here’s no getting around it--long distance relationships can be tough. It’s hard not to see your person very often and spend your time trying to coordinate busy schedules for phone calls. Planning some fun and creative long distance dates can help you feel connected to your partner while you’re apart. Let’s talk about:

  • Phone call date ideas
  • Video call date ideas
  • Ideas for feeling connected when you’re not talking 
A man in a long distance relationship stares out a window.
A long distance relationship can feel lonely at times, but creative long distance dates can make the feeling of distance disappear.

The Best Long Distance Dates Over the Phone 

Long Distance Date #1: Go for a Walk 

Sitting for hours with your phone to your ear is okay some days, but sometimes it feels boring and stale. It’s okay to be easily distracted while you sit and talk on the phone--that doesn’t mean you and your partner have nothing left to talk about.

One solution to phone call fatigue is to change your scenery. You can both head out for a walk around your separate neighborhoods or find a hiking trail or park and chat while you get some fresh air and exercise.

There’s plenty of time on a walk to talk about the topics you normally cover and fill each other in on anything interesting you see along the way. Send pictures of cool plants or cute dogs to give your partner context or see how good your description skills are.

Just remember that the people around you can hear you talking, so wait until you move away from someone before you describe their weird outfit to your partner. 

Long Distance Date #2: Ask All the Big and Little Questions 

Asking your partner questions is a great way to keep conversation flowing when you haven’t seen each other in a long time. You can either ask fun silly questions or have some serious relationship talk in preparation for when you’re together again. 

If you’re looking for some fun light questions for a long distance date, check out this list of 99 fun questions to ask your partner in a long distance relationship

Long Distance Date #3: Do Some Storytelling

Take turns reading to each other for a cozy story time style date. If the two of you like being creative you could take turns writing stories to then read. You can assign each other different prompts, like write a horror story, or write a story that starts with the main character learning to fly.

If you don’t want to write the whole story, try Mad Libs--tell your partner what type of word you need and then read back the weird story they created. Or take turns writing lines of a story one by one and see where it gets you. 

Long Distance Date #4: Have a Watch Party

Start a Netflix Party or just hit play at the same time and stay on the phone with your partner through whatever movie, documentary, or TV series you choose. You can chat during the slow parts, ask what other movie that actor was in, guess the ending, and whatever else you and your partner normally talk about while watching something. 

Long Distance Date #5: Plan for the Next Time You’ll See Each Other

Make a date of planning your next in person date. You don’t want to waste any of the time you have together when you see each other, so it makes sense to figure out all of the logistics now.

Where are you meeting? Where are you staying? What restaurants do you want to go to? Work together to plan the most amazing reunion date possible or plan separate secret dates to wow each other. If you’re a competitive couple, make it a competition for who can plan the best date.

A woman watches a movie at home in bed.
Get into your sweats, grab some popcorn, and put your partner on speakerphone for a movie night together. 

The Best Long Distance Dates Over Video

Video Date #1: Cook or Bake Together (While Apart)

Pick a recipe for a meal you both love, share a favorite with your partner, or choose something totally new for both of you. Once you have your recipe and ingredients, you’re ready to set up your video call and get cooking. You might even shop for ingredients while on the phone with your partner to be together for the entire process. 

This date works even if you live in different time zones because you can choose a recipe that one of you can reheat later when it’s actually dinner time. 

With a cooking date you get to figure out the recipe together, chat while you chop vegetables, and laugh together when things go wrong. You two will be doing the same things and smelling the same things and at the end of it you’ll already be prepared for a virtual dinner date. 

Video Date #2:  Do a Video Game Night

There are quite a few games that you can play over a video call. Some of your game night options are online versions of games you can both log into and some are games you already have at home. 

Online games:

Games you might have:

  • Scattergories
  • Yahtzee
  • Trivial Pursuit (just move your partner’s piece or set up matching boards)
  • Pictionary 

Video Date #3: Have a Long Distance Spa Night

With a virtual spa night you can pamper yourselves while on a video call. Get a face mask, some scrubs, a new nail polish, or whatever else you like to give yourself a spa experience. 

You can both light candles, play soothing music or wave sounds, and chill out together while giving yourself some well deserved self care. Adulting tends to be stressful and adding a long distance relationship to that stress isn’t easy. Having a calm stress reducing night while spending time together might be just what you need.  

Video Date #4: Be Active Together

If you aren’t big on sitting still, there are options for long distance date ideas that involve getting up and moving. 

One option is to have a dance party. You can take turns picking the music and dance your hearts out. You can set it up like a night out, complete with outfits and drinks, or dance around in your pajamas. 

If you prefer a little structure, learn a dance together. You can find videos and instructions online for anything from TikTok dances to the Charleston. You can pick a complicated partner dance and learn it separately with broom partners so you’ll be ready to wow everyone when you see each other next. 

Another great way to get your cardio in during your date is to do a workout together. You can take turns being the personal trainer and choosing how many reps of which moves, or you can both follow the same workout video online. If you’re competitive, have a push up or squat competition. 

These video dates will keep you in shape and give you something to bond over the next day when you’re trying to figure out which dance or exercise made you so sore. 

The ingredients for making homemade pasta sit on a counter.
Cooking together is a fun and rewarding date, even if it’s happening while you’re apart. 

Staying Connected Off the Phone 

What If You Barely Have Time for Long Distance Dates?

When you’re both busy or in different time zones (or both) it can be challenging to find time for frequent long distance dates. Here are some ways you can keep your long distance relationship going when you don’t have time for all those dates. 

1. Read the Same Books or Articles

Knowing your partner is reading the same book as you can make you feel closer to them and give you two quick easy check ins every day. Text your partner when something crazy happens (no spoilers of course) or when you find a line you really like. 

Reading together when you can’t be in the same place gives you something to share and knowing somewhere your partner is turning the same pages is a comforting thought. You can also have book club meetings when you do get a chance to have a long distance date.

If you save the books you read with your partner you can have a long distance bookshelf when you two are reunited. Made it through long distance and became well read? Talk about a power couple.  

2. Send Each Other Letters (and Presents!)

Using the good old fashioned postal service is a fun way to add another form of communication to your relationship. Sure, you can text and call whenever, but a handwritten letter is personal and involves careful thought. 

Writing letters also means the lovely surprise of a letter in your mailbox. You can bring your relationship back to the 1800s and wait dramatically for the mail to come everyday--while continuing to text as usual. 

And who doesn’t like presents? Sending each other care packages of favorites from home, snacks you know they’re missing, and inside jokes is a great way to feel connected. You’ll be immersed in your relationship while you make a care package and while you open one, whether or not you two are talking while you do it. 

3. Keep a Journal of Things You Want to Tell Your Partner

It can be hard to keep track of all the things you want to say to your partner when you’re stuck with phone calls and sending a text every time something happens during the day might get old. 

Instead, keep notes throughout the day of anything that makes you think, “I need to tell my partner about that.” This could be in the form of a stack of post it notes on your desk where you can jot down little things like when someone steals your yogurt or your boss compliments your work. 

Another option is to write down every time you think about something you miss about your partner or a reason why you love them. Paying attention to these thoughts and sharing them with your partner later can help keep you strong throughout long distance rather than leaving you bummed about how much you miss them. 

A couple reunites after being in a long distance relationship.
Long distance dates help keep your relationship happy and healthy in between the times when you get to be together in person. 

Time to start planning your next long distance date! Use these guidelines to create the perfect set of long distance dates for you and your partner and stay happy and strong until you finally get to see each other again.

Aug 18, 2020

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