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Save Money Without Compromising This Valentine’s Day

The Fine Art of Frugal Romancing

A happy couple; photo courtesy Alex Davis

Copyright © 2014 Ella Moss; all rights reserved; content may not be copied, rewritten, or republished without written permission.


Although shops and restaurants encourage us to spend like mad each February 14th, Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be expensive. There’s no need to give in to consumer pressure when you think about the true spirit of the occasion.

After all, the day shouldn’t be focused on gifts and fine dining, rather spending quality time with the one you love. If you’re wondering how to save money this year, try these easy to follow tips that will help you have a memorable day while keeping some extra cash in your pocket.

Make Your Own Card

In 2013 on both sides of the Atlantic it was popular to send a romantic text message on this holiday; according to CNN 29% of Americans did so last year, while figures in British Airways business magazine suggest that nearly ten times as many texts were sent in the UK in 2013 as in 2001.

Sending a romantic text message is certainly one way to avoid the cost of a card on February 14th, though there’s no need to go without a card altogether. As points out, when you browse the Valentine’s Day cards available, you’ll find they always are more expensive and the more romantic the design and wording, the greater the price hike.

It’s cheaper and more thoughtful to make a card yourself. That way you can create a card that reflects you as a couple and tailor the wording; there’s no need to make do with a generic card when you can design one that fits the bill exactly.

You don’t need to go out and buy specialist materials though, as you can use items such as colored cards, doilies, and ribbon to good effect and you can even make stampers using cut out corrugated cardboard attached to a wine cork. Even if you aren’t that artistic, they suggest a card displaying a cherished photo of you together is a simple yet effective idea.

Choose Your Flowers Wisely

While picking flowers from your garden is the ultimate way to save money on a Valentine’s bouquet, if this isn’t possible or you’re set on giving a dozen red roses, there are ways to save money on your flower purchase.

As an article on Reuter’s website highlights, the price of roses varies widely. A source quoted in their article suggests purchasing a bouquet from a discount warehouse or supermarket is the cheapest way to buy roses, as these usually offer much better value than florists and online retailers, where you pay a premium for delivery.

You could also look at your local market for roses that offer good value for money. As another option, buy a small rose bush so the flowers will keep coming.

Eat In

The same meal on this day costs much more than usual when you eat out, so Reader’s Digest advises you to celebrate at home with your partner. However, not only does this let you save money, but you also get to choose exactly what you want to eat and drink, and the chance to create the perfect atmosphere.

They suggest laying out a blanket in front of the fireplace, enjoying a picnic-style dining experience; even if you don’t have an open fire, use candles or tea lights to create a similar mood.

When it comes to the fizz they recommend Prosecco, which tastes just as good as champagne, but comes at a fraction of the price, while a light sorbet for dessert is an inexpensive way to round off the meal; it’s even cheaper if you make your own.

Spend the Day Together

Another alternative to a meal out, as reminds us, is to spend some time outdoors together. We live such busy lives that taking the time out to enjoy a few hours together during the day will probably mean a lot more than sitting down over dinner and not only will you appreciate each other’s company, it’s a great way to appreciate your local surroundings.

You don’t have to go far, but a hike somewhere close by that you both enjoy is one option if the weather is on your side. If alternatively there’s snow on the ground, they suggest sledging together then finding somewhere to enjoy a mug of warming hot chocolate.

Give a Gift the Following Week

Although it’s nice to receive a gift on the day, you often pay a premium for certain items in the run up to the official day. Particularly if your partner is fond of jewelry, PRNewswire advises that it makes financial sense to buy this shortly after 14th February, as usually these items will be on sale the following week.

You won’t be alone if you do this, as they report that last year the biggest shopping day around this time was actually 16th February. If you spent the 14th together, receiving a gift after the event will also be a nice surprise.

There’s No Gift Like Financial Security

Although it might not seem the most romantic of offerings, according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, one of the best gifts you can give your loved one is peace of mind that your finances are in order.

This doesn’t relate to the amount of money in your bank account, but that you manage your money wisely, so that no matter what happens you will both be in a better financial position. They give a list of ways to gain financial stability, ranging from keeping track of your spending and making your money go further to boosting the money in your savings account.

Taking these actions demonstrates your commitment to your future together and no matter what your circumstances is a present you can offer.

Do you have any lessons learned or tips on this topic? Why not share with other readers in the comment section below?

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