Quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts and physical touch- we are of course talking about the 5 love languages, aka the different ways we give and receive love. Said by some to have the biggest impact on relationship satisfaction and longevity, these categories were originally created by counsellor Gary Chapman in 1992, and have since formed the basis for much of what we know about relationship success. Simply put: without knowing your partner’s love language, any consistent effort to show up for them could be falling on deaf ears if it doesn’t fit with the ways they wish to receive love- effectively showcasing romantic feelings is all about recognising your partner’s individual needs.
The official 5 Love Languages website has a comprehensive quiz designed to help you discover your primary love language, what it means, and how you can use it to better connect with your loved ones, and once both you and your partner are on the same page it’s time to put into practice your new-found knowledge.
Whether your partner taking certain tasks off your hands is what makes your heart swell, or the idea of them picking up your favourite snacks on the way home makes you feel most connected to them, consider these date night ideas the perfect way to express and receive love in a way that means you and your S/O feel truly seen and loved.
Your partner feels loved when you carve out time specifically for them, giving them your full focus and attention without distraction. Whether this means putting your phone on ‘do not disturb’ or scheduling dates that require you to both be fully engaged in what the other one is saying, quality time is very different to the time you may spend together watching your favourite show or doing the weekly shop.
A Digital detox
Whether part of your weekend away or simply an add-on to your at-home dinner date, suggesting a digital detox where both of your devices are locked away in another room is an easy way to share time with your partner and give them your undivided attention.
A Road trip
Grab the snacks, make a curated playlist especially for them and hit the road, baby! Car chats are the best chats and the long open road ahead of you is surprisingly prime time for spending time one on one.
Block out their diary with a midweek date night
Essentially, a quality time lover’s wet dream, taking the initiative to make plans of your own accord and letting them in on the details later is a surefire way to win over those who are forever looking forward to the next date night.
Breakfast in bed
Simple, effective, beautifully intimate, a weekend brunch in bed is the stuff dreams are made of. Whip up a stack of fluffy pancakes or even order a McDonald’s to your door and start the day off together making eyes across a Sausage and Egg McMuffin.
A Spa Weekend
The ultimate digital detox, a day at the spa disconnecting from the outside world is the perfect way to spend quality time together whilst both feeling relaxed to the max. Massages, a dip in the pool and a glass of bubbly over lunch, what’s not to love?!
A weekend away
Perhaps the most costly and extravagant date option but one that will no doubt have quality time lovers weak at the knees, a weekend away dedicated purely to spending 48 hours with one another is the ultimate treat for those who value experiences and intimate time away with their partner. Whether it’s a U.K staycation to a new city or a more lowkey camping trip within an hour of home, it’s the thought that counts for those who never tire of hanging out with their other half.
Some words are felt deeper than others, and those who value words of affirmation tend to feel most connected to their partner upon hearing kind words or compliments- the less generic the better! These words of encouragement don’t have to be spoken aloud either, and could instead include a simple hand-written note or card.
Write each other a love letter during an at-home dinner date
If delivering a heartfelt speech across dinner feels a little try-hard for your liking, a more achievable, less self-ick-inducing date idea might include a romantic home-cooked dinner, followed by exchanging cards or letters to one another that are filled with kind words and true expressions of your feelings. Your S/O will treasure it forever!
Recreate your first date
There’s nothing like heading back to the location of your first date or time you met to evoke some serious heartfelt feelings, triggering heartfelt exchanges aplenty as you reflect on how far you have come as a couple and the feelings that have grown during your time together. Pass the tissues!
Plan a scavenger hunt, featuring heartfelt notes
Perfect for a special occasion date or to spice up your monthly date night, organising a scavenger hunt around your city or home is the perfect way to sneak some words of affirmation and compliments into your time together, including sentimental words that are sure to leave a lasting impact.
Organise a matching tattoo session
For long term lovers and those in committed relationships, a matching tattoo is not only the perfect way to immortalise your love, but can also act as a permanent reminder of a meaningful word between you, a phrase from a Valentine’s Card you treasure or a song lyric that speaks to you both. Commitment has never felt sexier.
Visit a book store and buy each other a new book
Words of a different nature here, but for those who value words of affirmation, picking out a romantic, sentimental or poignant book you think they would love will likely trigger big feelings. Write a meaningful note in the front and boom- dream gift, secured.
Acts of service lovers feel most valued when their partner does something to actively make their life easier- be it cooking a meal, or running an errand without being asked, taking time to prioritise their partner by helping to reduce stresses where possible is an act of service lovers dream.
Organise a cooking class together
Practical actions are an act of service lovers dream, meaning organising an activity like a cooking class that can benefit both of you will get a big thumbs up. Bonus points if you listen carefully enough to recreate the recipes at home!
Take part in their hobby
It’s about actions over words, and taking part in a hobby of theirs- especially if it’s something you don’t normally do- is earning you major brownie points for AOS lovers. Take the initiative to join in and immerse yourself in their world and they will love you even more for it.
Surprise them with a mid-week lunch date
Unexpected “I’m outside” texts are hot, end of story. Surprise your other half at work by taking them out for lunch when you know they’re having a stressful week and alleviate some of that pressure with a debrief and hug over a Katsu Curry. Ask them what you can do to help and be there to support them when things feel heavy- they’ll be eternally grateful.
Make a playlist for them and listen to it together
Music is often the way to the heart, and this date idea will ensure they feel truly seen and appreciated. Surprise your S/O with a playlist to make them smile- whether it’s a combination of meaningful songs from your relationship or new tunes you think they would love- and listen to it together with a glass of wine in hand.
Although this love language may on the surface appear materialistic, gift giving is far more about thoughtfulness than the value of a present. Gift giving reminds your partner that they are on your mind, no matter how small or inexpensive the gift is, and affirms to them that even when you are apart you are thinking of ways to make them smile.
Head to your nearest BYOB pottery painting and prepare for the most wholesome date of all. Not only is it a perfect way to spend quality time together, but you both get something to take away and keep forever- cute AF!
Head to a gallery and hit up the gift shop
The perfect way to spend a rainy day, local galleries, museums and exhibitions can offer hours of intrigue and fun. Finish your cultured date with a visit to the gift shop and purchase a memento for your S/O- be it a keyring, book or poster, your gift loving partner will treasure it.
Surprise them with gig tickets
Be it as part of a birthday or Christmas gift or just because, experiencing a concert together is a memory that’s sure to last, and organising and purchasing the tickets for your partner is the ultimate impressive date night.
Summer and autumn dates just got a whole lot more outdoorsy thanks to the humble Pick Your Own strawberry/blackberry/pumpkin/squash fields up and down the country. Pay for your partner’s pickings and head home to carve your pumpkins, bake a blackberry crumble or make a refreshing glass of Pimm’s with a selection of juicy strawberries. Yum!
The ultimate in romantic gestures with an end result your partner will hold dear to their heart, a ring making workshop is the perfect choice for creative couples looking to create a lasting memory together. Stuck for inspo? We had bundles of fun making our own rings with Cast!
Those who value physical touch above all other love languages feel most loved when receiving affection through touch, be it a hug, sex, holding hands, an arm around your shoulders in public. Serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin are released when we touch those we love, with oxytocin in particular being known as the bonding hormone. Physical touch lovers are more likely to enjoy public displays of affection and spontaneous kisses or touching of skin.
Grab the hot oil, light some candles and prepare for a sensual evening like no other. You need not be a professional masseuse to impress your partner with this date idea- sparks will be flying no matter what once the lights are dimmed and clothes are removed…
Book a dance class
From swing to ballroom, foxtrot to tango, a dance class in which you’re up close and personal with your partner is sure to inspire some flirty fun. Start the night over a drink in your gladrags and enjoy some quality time strutting your stuff together and enjoying physical touch galore.
Share a booth at dinner
Dinner just got upgraded with this spin on your normal date night. Find a restaurant where you can share a booth and enjoy a delicious meal and drinks sat side by side. This simple switch to your normal routine offers a chance for your partner to feel physically close to you, and will truly make their heart sing.
Walk a new route holding hands
Sometimes the less expensive dates are the best ones, and really who can top a Sunday morning walk with a coffee and your love? Grab a pastry and find somewhere scenic to sit, before continuing your stroll hand in hand, feeling the love radiate between you both.