This Is How Much a Date Night Cost 100 Years Ago

Dates in the 1920s were so much fun for so little money.

In the Roaring ’20s, fun was cheap—especially for a young woman and her date. June Chatterton of Milan, Illinois, recalls that a young lady could don her $ 1.98 hat, dust on some fine Armand powder, which cost $ 1, and be ready for a date.

Her fellow arrived on time, thanks to his $ 1.50 Ingersoll pocket watch, carrying a one-pound box of fine chocolates, purchased for $ 1. Away the happy couple went to watch Dolores Del Rio in The Bad One at the Garden Theatre in Davenport, Iowa. A 40-cent matinee ticket included a vaudeville show. This is what food shopping looked like 100 years ago.

For a snack after the movie, the couple might stop at Kresge’s (psst—do you know what the K in Kmart stands for?) for a 15 cent afternoon special at the soda fountain—only 10 cents with a coupon! And to finish off the date, a lovely moonlight excursion on the steamer “Capitol” cost just 75 cents.

vintage ticket what a date used to cost movieCourtesy June Chatterton/Reminisce

“Yes, those were the days,” June says. “Whenever I look at my scrapbook of the late 1920s, I’m reminded of the good times we enjoyed…for the right price.” Dates are certainly more expensive these days. Check out how much it cost to get married in Las Vegas in the 1950s.

1920s Date Night Prices

  • Ladies hat: $ 1.98
  • Pearl necklace: $ 8.50
  • Armand cold cream powder: $ 1
  • Men’s Ingersoll pocket watch: $ 1.50
  • Tickets to a dance: Ladies free, gentlemen $ 1
  • Tickets to a matinee movie: 40 cents
  • Soda fountain special: 10 cents with coupon
  • Moonlight excursion on a Steamer: 75 cents
  • Chrysler “77” Royal Sedan: $ 1,725

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