Top 10 Ways To Save Money On Valentine’s Day Gifts

by Hank Coleman

save money on Valentines DayValentines Day gifts can be expensive. But, they don’t have to be! You can save money on Valentines Day gifts and still make your significant other very happy! You just have to get a little creative on Valentines Day gift ideas.

Valentine’s Day is an expensive holiday for most people. And, it’s very hard for couples and spouses to save money on Valentines Day. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), expected sales for Valentine’s Day this year are expected to be over $19.7 billion. That’s an increase of over $1.1 billion from last year.

The average person planning to spend $146 on candy, cards, gifts and more which is over a 10% increase from last year and the highest spending total in the 12 years that the NRF has conducted the annual survey. Consumers will spend $4.5 billion on jewelry alone. And, we’re even spending $753.87 million on our pets this Valentine’s Day with the average spend $25 on dogs compared to $21 for cats.

So, how can couples have any chance to save money on Valentine’s Day this year? The simple answer is that you have to get a little creative. You have to think outside of the standard roses and box of chocolates.

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Here are ten ways that you can have a wonderful time and still save money on Valentines Day gifts.

Ten Ways To Save Money On Valentines Day Gift Ideas

Save Money On Flowers

Shop Online – If you don’t have the time to check prices at every local florist near you to find the best day or find one that can deliver in your area, you may want to consider using an online florist. Online retailers like 1-800-Flowers, FTD, and ProFlowers give you the chance to shop and compare bouquets, prices, and a variety of different types of flowers. In the past, I was nervous using an online florist. I was worried about quality and delivery. But, lately I’ve been using online florists for all my flowers, and I couldn’t be happier. I don’t know why I was worried. It’s a great and straightforward process with a huge selection.

Use a Coupon – It may be harder to find a coupon or deal when shopping local, but if you’re shopping online, coupons are plentiful. I don’t buy anything online without searching for an online coupon or coupon code. You can find 20% off with an FTD coupon, a ProFlowers Coupon, or 25% off early Valentine’s Day orders from 1-800-Flowers.com.

Buy Early – Offers.com recommends placing your flower order on or before January 31 to take advantage of the early bird discounts many flower retailers are offering. You can find discounts as much as 30% off but only if you hurry in most cases.

Choose a Different Delivery Day – You can save a few dollars by having flowers delivered to your sweetheart a few days before Valentine’s Day. Or, you can have the flowers delivered to you a few days before the holiday and then hand-deliver them yourself in-person. Not only will this save you a few dollars, but you’ll be able to see the excitement on your sweetheart’s face when you hand deliver them.

“A couple of years ago my husband was deployed [serving overseas in the Navy], and he sent me flowers on February 12th because he thought that was Valentine’s Day,” says Colleen McAdams, a Communications Partner with USAA. “Now, it has become a tradition that he gives me flowers then, and he always talks about how it is so much cheaper!”

Skip the Vase – The vase can be a significant portion of the cost for flowers. It is a perfect place for many florists to upcharge you. You see this happening both online and in person. You may also just want to skip using a vase altogether and use a one that you have at home. Vases can cost as much as $20 or more, and the chances are good that you have a spare vase lying around the house. Reusing or regifting a vase from home will show off the floral arrangement just as good as the vase the florist tries to sell you.

Skip The Roses Altogether

Almost 200 million roses are produced for Valentine’s Day alone. It is also no secret that the prices of roses, like most things, are dictated by supply and demand. There are a finite number of roses, and there is a higher demand for those roses especially around Valentine’s Day.

There are so many factors that go into the price of roses all the way from the grower to the wholesaler and then finally to your local florist shop. The price increases for Valentine’s Day continues through the supply chain whether we like it or not.

The one way that you can save money on Valentines Day is to not buy roses. You may be able to find a better deal on a different variety of flowers if you have to be some type of flowers for your loved one on Valentine’s Day.

10 Most Popular Valentine’s Day Flowers

  1. Rose
  2. Peony
  3. Orchid
  4. Lily
  5. Sunflower
  6. Tulip
  7. Daisy
  8. Iris
  9. Hydrangea
  10. Violet

Shop Together For What You Really Want

I love to shop with my wife for gifts whether it is for Valentine’s Day, her birthday, Christmas, or some other occasion. It is not because I love shopping with her for the sake of shopping. It is because I don’t like wasting my money on things that she won’t like. I hate the guessing game.

So, I make a point to keep a note as to what she likes while we are out together and buy that instead. Then I have the potential to watch that item and get it at some point throughout the year when it goes on sale.

Make A Meal At Home

I dread going to a restaurant on Valentine’s Day. Restaurants are always so crowded. So one way that you can save money on Valentines Day is to stay at home and make a nice romantic meal there. There are great recipes from sites like Food.com, Epicurious, AllRecipes.com, and the Food Network.

Celebrate On An Alternate Day

If you cannot afford to go out on February 14th, another great way to save money on Valentines Day is to choose an alternate day. It will not only be cheaper, but it will be less crowded even if you pick one or two days to the left or right on the calendar to celebrate. A day is a day is a day and doesn’t really matter the actual date as long as you spend it with your loved one.

Set A Spending Limit

Not having a spending limit is one of the biggest problems that get the most people in trouble with overspending on Valentine’s Day. You should have a frank and honest discussion with your loved one before on how much you are going to spend on Valentines Day gifts and food for the special day. Setting the limit and expectations before can help you managed the day and save your wallet too.

Skip The Holiday Altogether

This will hit home with everyone who is heartbroken and bummed out during this time of year. But, there is nothing wrong with couples and married folks simply skipping this particular holiday in favor of saving money.

Homemade Gifts

My wife has finally jumped onto the Pinterest bandwagon with full abandon. I can’t complain though because we have never eaten better as a family. She has found more healthy foods to cook than ever before, and they are simply delicious.

You can use Pinterest for Valentine’s Day too, though. You can find great simple, cheap homemade gift ideas that you can make yourself. Here are some of my pins for homemade Valentines Day gifts. Be sure to follow me and Money Q&A on Pinterest as well!

Homemade Construction Paper Gift Cards

One way to save money on Valentine’s Day is to pretend that you’re in elementary school again and give your loved one a gift card. But, I’m not recommending you give any old gift card.

Instead, consider saving money the “old school” way by doing something for your spouse and giving her a few times on the handmade gift cards for that even. These can be as simple as a foot rub, home cooked dinner, or an hour or two of alone time. You can also slip your IOU gift card into ecards for Valentine’s Day to make them extra fun.

Plan Ahead For Gifts

I am notorious in my house for buying gifts for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, other holidays, and birthdays throughout the year. I watch what my wife and children notice, talk about, and like throughout the year while we are shopping. Then, I write it down and eventually buy it and surprise them with the gift months later.

Not only does this allow me to get a gift that they wanted but weren’t necessarily expecting, but it also allows me to time my purchases throughout the year when my budget can support it. I can also look for sales using this “wait and see” method of gift buying.

Honorable Mention – Use Credit Card Reward Points

My wife loves to use our American Express card and its reward points to give gifts throughout the year. Using your reward points to buy Valentines Day gifts is a great way to save money on Valentines Day.

We use our American Express card throughout the year for ordinary purchases and pay off the balance every month. Our points continue to climb, and we cash them in for gift cards usually that our friends and family would love to receive as gifts. You can also use cash back rewards cards too for help buying your Valentine’s Day gifts.

USAAThe USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express lets you earn 5% cash back on your first $3000 in gas and military base purchases annually. After that, earn 1% for the remainder of the year. And, you can earn 2% on the first $3,000 of groceries and 1% on all other purchases. 

The personal finance comparison website finder.com has conducted some research on Americans’ Valentine’s Day spending habits. And, almost half of Americans (47%) are planning to use their credit cards to help pay for Valentine’s Day.

You do not have to get fancy to have a good gift for your loved one this Valentine’s Day. The best Valentines Day gifts when you are trying to save money on Valentine’s Day come from the heart, are typically handmade and are thoughtful. They can be simple and still get your meaning across.

How are you finding ways to save money on Valentines Day gift ideas this year? Lets me know in the comment section below.

Top 10 Ways To Save Money On Valentine's Day Gifts

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About Hank Coleman

Hank Coleman is the founder of Money Q&A, an Iraq combat veteran, a Dr. Pepper addict, and a self-proclaimed investing junkie. He has written extensively for many nationally known financial websites and publications. Hank holds a Master’s Degree in Finance and a graduate certificate in personal financial planning. Email him directly at Hank[at]MoneyQandA.com.


Hank Coleman has written 575 articles on Money Q&A. Learn more about Money Q&A on Twitter @MoneyQandA and @HankColeman.


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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

JT

Well, we won’t be spending any money on candy. Dinner at home with dessert out and a movie might be a good way to go. We have $20 in movie gift cards that we need to use so out of pocket expense should be much less than $130.

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Elizabeth @ Simple Finance

We always skip dinner on Valentine’s Day and opt for a dinner a week before or afterwards. We find we have access to a broader menu on those days, and a better chance of getting a good table at a good time. Oh, and order the prosecco instead of champagne – tastes the same but is usually cheaper!

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John S @ Frugal Rules

Shopping together s a great idea, I’ve never thought of doing that. We usually skip going out on the night and go out the weekend before or after. It saves money and we don’t have to battle the long waits.

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krantcents

All good points! I bought my wife a sampling of candy this year! It was the pieces she likes but considerably less money. Celebrating on another day is a good money saver too.

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Tie the Money Knot

Good tips, dining at home can be a great choice. The idea of skipping the holiday, however, is one to be careful with – or at least, be careful suggesting the idea 🙂

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Love It For Les

Hey Hank . . . I’d go with setting a budget . . . Maybe even make it a competition to make it more fun. This year we did $10 limits. $10 gets you a fair bit of Valentines Tack in the dollar store 😉

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