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Virtual date ideas: 8 activities for long distance couples in lockdown

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Lauren Geall
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A woman on a virtual date

Want to make your next Zoom date extra special? Surprise your partner with one of these easy virtual date ideas.  

Although the coronavirus lockdown restrictions may be beginning to ease and some semblance of normal life might be returning to our streets, social distancing rules mean it might be a while before every aspect of our lives can return to normal.

Take dating, for example. Although some couples may have found themselves isolating together, others – whether they’ve only just started dating or have been together for a while – have found themselves suddenly forced into a long distance relationship. And while socially distanced walks may now be an option for some, for others, virtual dates will remain an important part of their relationships for the foreseeable future. 

Luckily, we live in a time where video-calling apps such as Zoom and FaceTime allow us to communicate easily with our loved ones – instead of taking a trip to a local bar or popping round their house for a drink, we can now jump on a video call and speak face-to-face within moments.

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Of course, having a drink together over video call is still as good an idea as any, but adding in a few activities to your Zoom session can help you to feel more connected to someone, no matter what stage in your relationship you’re at.

So without further ado, here’s a list of great virtual date ideas to help you add a little extra fun into your relationship during this difficult time. 

Try an online escape room

Yep, online escape rooms really are a thing – and they’re a great way to feel closer to your partner from a distance (if, that is, you don’t end up arguing about who’s right).

Put your heads together and work out the clues to escape from the room of your choice – with themes ranging from Harry Potter to Grimms fairytales, there’s no shortage of fun challenges to take on.

Play the pancakes vs waffles game

Pancakes
Virtual date ideas: play the pancakes vs waffles game.

We were confused about this one at first too, but bear with us.

Pancakes vs waffles is a game which allows you to find out more about the other person and have a laugh while doing it. It starts off pretty simple – player one poses the question “pancakes or waffles?” to the other player, who then has to choose one of the options. In the game’s universe, the other option now ceases to exist.

The game then continues with the chosen option, say waffles, versus a new object, say chips. The trajectory of the game is up to you: either stay light-hearted and debate the values of various foodstuffs or go deep and argue about whether education or policing is more important. It’s up to you!

Once you reach a point where the person is unable to choose, you can simply swap roles and play all over again.

Order each other dinner

If your local restaurants are still delivering takeaways, why not mix things up and order a meal for each other? Sure, you could just order your own food and eat it at the same time over FaceTime, but there’s something extra cute about ordering a meal for your date.

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All you need to do is set a budget, pick a restaurant (or not, if you want a real surprise) and get ordering – bon appetit!

Watch a film

Bring movie night online with Netflix Party, a chrome extension which allows you to watch a TV show or film with your date over the internet.

Forget the days when you had to click play at the exact same time or pause your screen because the other person’s was buffering: now, having a virtual movie night is as easy as pie.

Cook together

A woman cooking
Virtual date ideas: cook together.

If you’d prefer not to splash the cash on a takeaway date, why not have a go at cooking together?

Simply pick a recipe (it could be one neither of you have tried before if you want to set yourselves a challenge) and get started. If you’re looking for something special, plenty of restaurants have shared their most popular recipes so you can have some takeaway treats at home.

Not only do you then get to spend some quality time together and have a laugh when someone inevitably messes up, but your food will be ready at the exact same time, meaning you’ll be able to sit down and have a more conventional date afterwards. 

Answer 36 questions

Dive straight into the deep end and put the science to the test by playing the 36 questions game. Based on a study by psychologist Arthur Aron (and others), the 36 questions are broken up into three sets and gradually get more personal. They were designed to test whether intimacy between two strangers can be accelerated when you ask personal questions. 

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If you’re feeling brave enough, why not give it a go? It’s all in the name of science, after all… 

Go for a walk together

Although holding hands and going for an evening stroll is no longer on the agenda, getting out of the house (within government guidelines, of course) and speaking over the phone is a great way to get the conversation flowing.

You could even take it in terms to narrate everything that’s going on around you.

Play an online game

Nintendo Switch controllers
Virtual date ideas: play an online game.

Let your competitive streak run rabid by playing online games alongside your partner. The best bit? You can now play most games you’d play in real life online, including famous card games like Cards Against Humanity and Exploding Kittens. 

If you’ve both got a gaming console like a Nintendo Switch, you could play a number of your favourite games in online mode including Animal Crossing (you can visit each other’s islands, it’s incredibly cute) and Mario Kart.

If you’re an avid Stylist fan, you’ll know it’s not always possible to find an issue of our magazine. Often they’re gone before you head into work (they disappear fast!), or you live in a part of the UK where you can’t get your hands on a copy. Add to this the fact that millions of us are not commuting right now, and we wanted to ensure you don’t miss out on the magazine any longer.

Which is why we’re delighted to let you know that Stylist magazine is now available in a digital format, both for Apple and Android users, allowing you to download the full magazine directly to your smartphone or tablet, wherever you may be.

Pricing for our digital magazine starts at just 99p for a single issue, or £21.99 for a full year’s subscription –that’s less than 50p a week! Simply click on the link to activate your Stylist app download from either the Apple store or Google Play and enjoy!

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