Ten Ways To Save Money On Valentine’s Day

by Hank Coleman

save money on Valentines DayValentine’s Day is an expensive holiday for most people. It is 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 $18.6 billion. The average person planning to spend $130 on candy, cards, gifts and more which is a 2% increase from last year and the highest spending total in the 11 years that the NRF has conducted the annual survey.

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 chocolates box. Here are ten ways that you can have a great time and still save money on Valentines Day.

Ten Ways To Save Money On Valentine’s Day

Skip The Roses

Almost 200 million roses are produced for Valentine’s Day alone. It is also no secret that the price 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.

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 you 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. It is 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 hand on how much you are going to spend on gifts and food for the special day. Setting the limit and expectations before hand 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. Pinterest can be used 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 Valentine’s 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 giftcards for that even. These can be as simple as a foot rub, home cooked dinner, or an hour or two of alone time.

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. 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.

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 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. The USAA Rewards American Express Card lets you earn 2,500 bonus points after your first purchase. And, you can earn one point for every dollar spent there after and earn double points on gas and grocery purchases all the time. USAA Rewards™ American Express® CardApply Now!

You do not have to get fancy to have a good gift for your loved one this Valentine’s Day. The best 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 Valentine’s Day this year? Lets talk about it in the comment section below.

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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 is currently pursuing his Certified Financial Planner credentials. Email him directly at Hank[at]MoneyQandA.com.


Hank Coleman has written 525 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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