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How Much Should You Spend On Valentine’s Day?

$161.96! Not the answer you expected? Well, that is how much you should spend on Valentine’s Day if you want to be considered an average spender!

Valentine’s Day Data

According to National Retail Federation fewer people will spend money on Valentine’s Day this year, but the ones who do will spend more! Apparently, they started spreading the love and include children, parent, friends and co-workers. “Those surveyed said they would spend an average $161.96 “ There is so much love that the estimated spending for 2019 is 20.6 billions!! YES! BILLIONS.

In 2017, out of an estimated $18.2 billions spending, 2 billions was expected to be on flowers alone. They don’t even last:(

So much love! Can you imagine what could be done with 20.6 billions?

Valentine’s Day is the “day of romance” so why do we feel the need to spend money on kids, parents, friends and co-workers? Why do we even feel the need to spend any money at all, even on our partner?

Find out about the origin of Valentine’s Day in this article from the New York Times.

Social Conditioning?

From an early age, kids are being encouraged (by the school and their parents) to bring cards, candies and/or gifts to their classmates and even their teachers. We, as parents, are conditioning them to become future Valentine’s Day consumers.

I tried not to participate in it at all when my kids were younger but it was so hard to do because everybody else was doing it. And I didn’t you don’t want your kids to feel totally left out.

I am not sure where to start to break the cycle, do you?

Social Pressure?

There is this misconception, in today’s society, that if we love someone, we have to spend money to show them how much we truly love them, particularly on Valentine’s Day. The pressure is everywhere, you can’t avoid it (unless you don’t set foot in any stores at all and close your eyes every time there is a commercial!)

Even your friends or co-workers probably ask you what you are getting your loved one on this special day? Do you feel the pressure yet?

VALENTINE DAY'S gifts - How much should you spend?

You Don’t Need To Spend Money To Show Your Love!

Here is the good news! You can celebrate Valentine’s Day with your special someone without breaking the bank!

Here are some ideas to celebrate Valentines’ Day , without contributing to the 20.6 billion estimated spending :

  1. Take a vacation day and spend it doing something you both really enjoy!
  2. Send them a personalized eCard! You can use on-line tools to create your card, add pictures, draw or write your personalized message.
  3. Make a video to tell them how much you love them and why. It can be romantic or humorous or both. You can keep it personal and for their eyes only or post it on YouTube‌ for the world to see!
  4. Write a love letter .Remind them why you fell in love with them, which of their qualities you admire the most and why they are so special to you.
  5. Bake something special. A cake, cookies or even chocolate truffles. Most of it doesn’t require special skills, it’s pretty easy.
  6. A scavenger hunt. Make up your own, be creative, include special (to your life together) items to find, and come up with an awesome prize(s). Offering to do the dishes for a week is not that awesome but whatever rocks their boat!
  7. Have a romantic movie marathon. Take the day or the night off, grab the popcorn or their favorite junk food and binge watch romantic movies or whatever movies you both enjoy.
  8. Bring her/him favorite lunch to work.
  9. Have an impromptu picnic; Gather everything you need to enjoy a picnic (outdoor or indoor). Do you have a tent? Set it up in your living room and decorate with lights, candles (watch for fire hazard) and a nice tablecloth.
  10. An old favorite: Romantic candle light dinner at home. Cook his/her favorite meal (or favorite take out if you really suck at cooking), open a bottle of wine, dimmer the lights, light a few candles, turn on the stereo and enjoy!

Wrapping Up

You don’t need to spend $161.96 on Valentine’s Day this year! I mean How many chocolates can one eat? (Actually never mind, one can actually eat an endless amount of chocolate – We know I can!) .

The point is; you shouldn’t have to spend money to celebrate Valentine’s Day, unless you really want to! The BEST gift will always be the most thoughtful one and rarely requires spending money.

How about you, how much will you spend on Valentine’s Day this year?

Related post: Don’t get sucked into Valentine’s Day Consumerism!

18 thoughts on “How Much Should You Spend On Valentine’s Day?

  1. Hi Caroline, I like the 10 ideas. They are very special, and it doesn’t cost much.

    Luckily I don’t feel the social pressure for Valentine’s Day or any holidays. We are going to enjoy the American buffet again. Since I was not at home during the last Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year, our birthdays and anniversary, we are going to combine all and celebrate together. Less than 30 bucks for two of us, quite cheap, huh? It should be a great time.

  2. i think we’ll be near zero except whatever we eat and drink. what we eat and drink on a thursday is like a lot of peoples’ special occasion food and wine anyhow. sometimes mrs. smidlap draws me a card, which i love. it’s good to have an artist around. sometimes we have people over for dinner but really it’s nothing more or less than another day in the life.

    i take it back, maybe i’ll get some chocolate, like the good stuff. i hope you enjoy whatever you do from your list.

    1. Hi Freddy, did you end up getting the chocolates? What is the good stuff?
      I ended up making my partner’s favorite meal, chicken parmigiani:) and I did get chocolate!

      1. we had chicken picatta and it was great. i never did get the fancy chocolate bar. mrs. smidlap got some 1/2 price chocolates the next day and they were terrible. i hope you enjoyed the day.

  3. A few years ago after a few holiday meltdowns (me, all me), my husband and I sat down and talked about our expectations. We grew up in very different households so this helped us understand what was important to each other. We will now usually have a quick chat before each each holiday so we know we’re on the same page. Before Christmas we decided that we’d do stocking stuffer type gifts only since we’d made a big purchase the month before. Valentine’s Day isn’t terribly important to me, so I suggested cards only this year. It’s maybe less romantic to have these chats, but it prevents the very unromantic arguments that we had in the past and that many of my friends have with their significant other around the holidays (or the next month when the credit card bill shows up!).

  4. Lovely pin! I’ve pinned it.

    I dont’ think we are celebrating Valentine’s day. Perhaps we will celebrate by having a nice sleep haha that might be the gift our toddler gives us. A post 6am wake up time.

  5. If we do anything it’s just a nice meal at home (but who are we kidding, we’re foodies and will take any excuse when can get…) Luckily the kiddo won’t be at preschool that day so we can dodge it again this year. It will be interesting in two more though once he starts kindergarten.

  6. Thanks for the gift ideas, Caroline! I’ve done the flower thing and made a bigger deal of valentine’s day in the past. But now I’m more about a nice meal and bottle of wine at home. Studying business marketing in school nearly ruined all days like this lol. It makes it seem like a big money grab. I like your ideas and I agree that it shouldn’t be something you have to do. In fact, I think a random gift would be more meaningful. Great post!

  7. $169 isn’t that bad actually! I thought the bayimana average was going to be twice that! Actually…is that Canadian average or US? I was planning to body tackle my husband this year to show him the huge impact I’ve made on his life hahaha 😆 that’s free

  8. wow surprised the avg is that high. You are right about kids. that generally is Ll we spend on the holidays. maybe 10 bucks for cards and some heart chocolates.

    Sometimes i debate sending the wife flowers but they are so expensive. If we do go out for dinner its always a different day and not the holiday its to busy.

    Its just a night we make sure to enjoy each others bodies!

    Thats good enough for me. haha

    cheers Caroline.

    1. Hi Rob, I always love getting flowers but I prefer to receive them when I don’t expect it, so much nicer.
      Hope you got to enjoy each others bodies! lol
      Cheers.

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