Bored teen on her laptop

I know how difficult it can be to find places to go when you’re bored and budgeting. Oftentimes, all those fun activities get pushed to the wayside to make extra room for groceries and to pay off debt.

But just because you’re budgeting doesn’t mean you can’t have fun! There are plenty of activities and places out there that you can still enjoy even when the funds are low. Here are some of my go-to places to check out when you’re bored that barely cost a dime!

Places To Go When Bored & With Friends

Two friends bored on a couch looking at their phones

It’s easy to run out of ideas for things to do – especially when you want to entertain more than just yourself. Here are low-cost options that you and your friends can enjoy together!

Karaoke Night

Not one person can feel bored on karaoke night! Renting rooms comes at a cost but many bars host free karaoke nights for those who aren’t shy to sing on stage.

Trivia Night

Like karaoke night, tons of pubs and bars host weekly trivia nights. Round up a group of your friends and see just how many questions you can get right.

Community Yoga Class

Most community centers offer budget-friendly yoga and other exercise classes. Bring your mat and get ready to move your body.

Farmer’s Market

Get your grocery shopping done and support local farmers and makers. Most farmer’s markets run on Saturdays or Sundays, and some are open year-round.

A farmer's market is a great place to visit when you're bored and on a budget

Local Art Gallery

Even the smallest towns have a local gallery you can visit. Larger galleries may charge an admission fee but usually have discounted prices or days for locals.

Garage Sale Or Flea Market

Whether you just want to window shop or look for a hidden gem, garage sales in the neighborhood or local flea markets won’t break the budget.


If the shops have closed, head out for the night and away from the light pollution to look up at the sky. Don’t forget a hot drink and blankets!


So many bowling alleys still have that classic charm and retro chic. Compared to most group activities, bowling is still fairly affordable for a fun night out – especially if you go on a discount day.

Jazz Bar Or Other Live Entertainment

Find a local bar, restaurant, or pub that advertises live entertainment. Enjoy a drink or two while you listen to the musician do their thing.

Dancing with friends

Roller Skating

Why roller skating ever fell out of style, I don’t know! This is such a fun and affordable activity that gets the heart rate going as you skate and jam to songs.


Regular golf requires you to have your own set of clubs or rent some in addition to paying for the game itself. So why not try the cheaper alternative of family-friendly mini-golf instead?

Pool Or Jacuzzi

Most community pools are geared towards families and will offer really affordable pricing. You can spend the whole time relaxing in the hot tub if you’d like!

Sports Game

Now it’s very pricey to see the pros in action, but you can still catch a great game by supporting a junior league or the local college or high school.

Tour A Local Eatery

See if any special eateries offer a behind-the-scenes look at how they make their food. This could be a chocolate store, bakery, or even a brewery.

Movie Theatre

While movie tickets aren’t as cheap as they used to be, most theaters have a special weeknight that offers discounted tickets as an incentive to get you to visit.

Local Comedy Club

If you’re looking for some laughs, check out some local comedy. You may just see the next Jerry Seinfeld or Chris Rock!

Two friends laughing at a comedy club

Boardgame Café

These wonderful café, restaurant, and bar hybrids have board games that you can enjoy while you eat and drink. This is a great idea for a night out with friends.

Horse Races

If you live close to a horse track, you can see the games live! While most people go and spend money by betting on horses, it’s fun in itself just to pick your favorite horse and cheer on the sidelines.

Rock Climbing

No, this is not bouldering! There are tons of indoor climbing centers that allow drop-ins for beginner climbers. Get some friends together and belay away.

Outdoor Places To Go When Bored

Getting outside is always a great idea – and most of the time, completely free! Check out these ideas for places to go when bored that get you out in nature.

Lake Day

While everyone might not have a beautiful oceanside beach to go to, I’m sure you have a lake that’s not too far away for you to have your own lake day enjoying the sun and water.


Camping is one of the most affordable holiday options out there, especially for families. If you don’t already have a tent or shelter to stay the night in, set up camp in the back of your vehicle. You can easily find a list of camping spots on Reserve America’s website.

Camping on a budget

Fly A Kite

It isn’t just kids who can have fun flying a kite. Hit up the dollar store and get yourself a kite before finding a nice, empty field and running with the wind.

Rent A Kayak, Canoe, Or Paddleboard

Owning a kayak or canoe isn’t cheap, but rentals can be! Get outside and on the water by booking a rental at your nearest body of water.

Kayak on the river - great thing to do when you're bored and on a budget

Bike Ride

Pick up speed and enjoy your local neighborhood by bike. Alternatively, drive out and try riding somewhere new. If you don’t own a bike, check to see if there is a nearby rental company.


Hiking is one of the most satisfying activities you can do absolutely free, especially when there’s a view! Find a trail at your fitness level and enjoy your time amongst nature.

hiking is a great activity on a budget


Everybody loves a picnic! Pack up lunch or some snacks you already have from your pantry, a big blanket, and head to a nearby park to enjoy your food.

Botanical Gardens

Check to see if there are any botanical gardens in your area. Most offer free or low admission, allowing you to enjoy the greenery and flowers on a budget.

Petting Zoo

Normal zoos tend to have high admission fees, but petting zoos are cheap and even free at times. Enjoy the company of the farm animals!

Drive-In Movie Theatre

If you’re lucky enough to live by a drive-in theatre, you have to go! Enjoy the nostalgia and the cheap concession prices while enjoying a movie outdoors.

3 friends watching a movie together on the floor

Free Walking Tour

Most major cities offer completely free walking tours hosted by locals who love their city. Become a tourist in your own city and learn a little bit of history you may not have known before.

Places To Go When You’re Bored and Alone

If you find yourself with nothing to do and not a ton of money to spend, here are some things you can enjoy solo!

Walk Out Of Town

When you’re on your own, you can make things much more exciting by exploring a new area. Take your phone with you just in case you get lost!


The library is a treasure-trove of wonders waiting to be discovered. Besides finding a new book, many libraries offer free events and other amenities you can also enjoy.

Fruit Picking

Pick some seasonal fruit by the bucketload at local farms or orchards. Not only is it one of the most fun places to go when bored, but it’s also a great way to save on produce! Enjoy some fruit now, freeze, or can some for later.

Local Museum

Most small museums have a very low admission fee. For the larger ones, check to see if they have a local’s discount or day for a better price.

Pop-Up Events

Every week, there’s always something going on in most major cities. Look for weekend-only or pop-up events you can visit on your own.


You’ll get so much joy by dedicating your time. Volunteer at a local food bank, animal shelter, library, community center, or other places that would love your assistance.

Volunteering with friends

Community Play

Why not support some local talent! You can catch some amazing quality plays at small theatres, colleges, or even high schools.

Go For Ice Cream

Ice cream is something that can be squeezed into any budget. Take a walk with your iced treat or simply sit and enjoy the delicious taste.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are plenty of places to go when you are bored and on a budget! Don’t fall into the trap of believing that no money = no fun. Just make smart choices and you can still have a blast!