Family Money Saving Tips

Great Valentine’s Day Present Ideas

Great Valentine’s Day Present Ideas
Written by Oana Schneider

If you think that you can ‘survive’ Valentine’s Day simply by offering your significant other a box of chocolates and a bouquet of flowers, think again. Over the years, the celebration of Valentine’s Day has become more of an experience, a national holiday of sorts for couples.

This means that there’s more work to be done by men who would like to impress their lady love. Reservations for fine dining restaurants are almost impossible to find a week before February 14, and tickets to Valentine’s Day events are easily sold out.

In the following sections, we will learn a bit more about how men actually outspend women on Valentine’s Day, and what you can do to celebrate the occasion if you are on a budget. If you are looking for Valentine’s day present ideas, we got you covered!

Valentine’s Day Present Ideas for Men

First, let’s take a look at a few studies which show just how much men are willing to spend to make Valentine’s Day a special occasion for their significant others:

  • Credit card company American Express conducted a survey which showed that couples are willing to shell out around $200 for Valentine’s Day-related expenses.
  • According to the National Retail Federation, the average American spent $116 on Valentine’s Day merchandise – dinners, flowers, gifts – despite the recession on 2010.
  • Still according to NRF, Americans spend up to $18.6 billion on chocolates, candy, cards, gifts, etc. for Valentine’s Day. $10.5 billion of this go towards gifts for significant others; another part is spent on family members, classmates and friends; and there’s even a huge $815 million spent on Valentine’s Day gifts for pets!
  • Based from the studies conducted by the American Express Spending and Saving Tracker, men plan to spend more than women on gifts for their significant others. The same survey indicated that 48% of the women do not plan on buying any gifts at all for their significant others.
  • Some of the most common gift ideas that men have for Valentine’s Day are: flowers – 49%; jewelry – 17%; gift cards – 12%; lingerie or sleepwear – 11%.

As you can see, men do outspend women when it comes to gifts, dinners and other activities during Valentine’s Day. But if you are not part of the bunch who think that you should shell out most of your hard-earned bucks during this time of the year, is there any way for you to celebrate the occasion without having to spend too much? Read on to find out. These are the best Valentine’s day present ideas!

Ways for Men to Save Money on Valentine’s Day

Just because you’re not willing to pay for an overpriced box of chocolates or a bouquet of flowers for Valentine’s Day does not mean that you should miss out on all the fun.  Here is a list of some Valentine’s day present ideas for men, wen it comes to celebrating Valentine’s Day with their significant other, without burning a hole in their pocket:

Know where to buy flowers

Nothing melts a woman’s heart faster than a bouquet of flowers. These might be hard to score on Valentine’s Day, however, so know exactly where to find them.

First, here are some things to remember when buying flowers. If red roses are what you’re looking for, they are best stored by florists on an ice cold temperature – between 32 to 36 degrees. What does this mean for you as a buyer?

The number one thing to keep in mind is that it does not really pay to get your flowers from vendors on the side of the road. The blooms will probably last for one or two days, but after that – the petals will start wilting and look an unsightly red-black. Flowers should also never be bought online, simply because FedEx and UPS trucks are not flower-friendly.

If you must purchase flowers from a nearby source, check out the local florists in your area. Just be sure to make your reservations in advance because they are typically swamped with orders during Valentine’s Day.

If there are grocery stores, supermarkets or even warehouses in your area which sell flowers, ask first if the blooms are kept refrigerated. If yes, then they would have a chance of lasting as long as flowers bought from professional florists.

When choosing flowers, look for tight buds which will blossom within a few hours and stay lovely for a good number of days. Roses with already open buds should last you for one or two days. Keep reading for more Valentine’s day present ideas.

Great Valentine’s Day Present Ideas

Have a sweet Valentine’s Day!

Exert some effort in cooking for your loved one

If you are promising an elegant dinner for your significant other on Valentine’s Day, be prepared to deal with heavy traffic, higher-than-usual prices, and never make the mistake of thinking that you can reserve a table one or two days prior to the date. The occasion has grown so big over the years that even small diners have Valentine’s Day promos. Tables need to be reserved weeks or even months in advance and most places are packed so you cannot have an intimate conversation, anyway.

If you would like to save money while still having a cozy dinner with your lady love on Valentine’s Day, exert the effort to cook it yourself. Have a nice table setup in your home where you can light some candles and play romantic music. Of course, you need to make sure that dinner is palatable – and the mere fact that you exerted the effort to cook everything will definitely earn points in your favor.

Picnics by the beach or under the moonlight are other romantic dinner ideas that you can borrow on Valentine’s Day. One of the least expensive and yet best Valentine’s day present ideas is to cook something special for the love of your life. 

Be an expert at buying jewelry

If you’re buying a Valentine’s Day gift for your fiancee or your wife, it does need to be extra special. You can go online to have an idea about the on-going selling prices of diamonds, but just like flowers, it’s never a good idea to buy diamonds or other jewelry online.

Look for a karat stamp if you’re buying gold. For diamonds, the four Cs to look for are carat, cut, color and clarity of the stone. Get the most beautiful jewelry that your budget allows, and make sure that you are buying from a reliable dealer.

Go on a romantic getaway, but before or after Valentine’s Day

Themed hotels, casinos and other establishments offering accommodations would be fully booked on Valentine’s Day. If you must go away for a romantic trip, do it a week before or after February 14. This will give you the opportunity to book rooms at cheaper prices, and the places that you will visit will be less crowded.

Plan ahead

If you would like to buy lingerie or sleepwear for your significant other, make sure that you have her measurements spot on. If you buy a size or two too large, prepare for her quiet wrath. Also, know exactly what to say when you hand out the gift. Saying that the gift is for you as a man may simply lead her to taunt you to never wear your gift. On the other hand, giving her a sincere compliment or a note that says “Try this on” with that naughty-cute smile on your face which you know she can’t resist would make the gift sexy instead of tacky.

Great Valentine’s Day Present Ideas

Make a reservation for Valentine’s Day!

Do give her something…

When coming up with Valentine’s day present ideas, you have to keep in mind one thing: no matter what it is, you have to give her something.

Let’s say that you and your partner are planning a quite expensive getaway to a tropical island somewhere. She says that you should not bother giving her a gift because that trip will be your Valentine’s Day celebration.

When February 14 arrives, you live up to your agreement of not giving her anything. This might just earn you the cold shoulder because even if she says outright that you should not give her anything, she still clearly expects you to give her something for that special day.

Simply tone the price of your Valentine’s Day purchases down, even if she says that you should not bother giving her anything.

Score free shipping, credit card rewards, etc.

Romantic gift baskets, chocolates, candy packages or care packages are readily available for men to purchase online. If you would like to take advantage of the convenience of online shopping, make sure to use your credit card rewards, discount coupons, vouchers, or score free shipping. The competition between online stores is quite stiff during this season, so they should be able to provide you with such incentives. Need more Valentine’s day present ideas? You got it!

More tips to save money for Valentine’s Day

Simply use your imagination and you can find something affordable but memorable to give your significant other on Valentine’s Day. It could be something pretty, a memorable experience or even a well thought-out evening which is all about romance and intimacy. Since you do not have to worry so much about the monetary part, you can focus all your energies into making the evening as memorable as possible for her and for you – since that’s what Valentine’s Day is all about, anyway.

Now you have plenty of Valentine’s day present ideas to choose from, so there’s no excuse! Have a great Valentine’s Day and may the inspiration be with you when you purchase a gift!

About the author

Oana Schneider

Oana Schneider is a published author located in Chicago, Illinois, who currently works for DontPayFull.com as a communication specialist and blog editor. She writes about lifestyle, family budget, has a degree in Communications and advocates for women’s rights. Her future plans include getting a Labrador and losing a few pounds.

11 Comments

  • This year, my partner and I are having to celebrate Valentine’s Day on the 15th rather than the 14th, because he works evenings and cannot use any holidays at this time because obviously a lot of other people are trying to do so, and somebody has to work. What shocked us was the huge price difference between the Saturday and the Sunday night. It is literally half of the price at the time that we have booked, so it made us realise that maybe in the future we should try to do the same time and book and other times. It is a good idea and one that many people should try, because if you’re not all that concerned about when you celebrate the day, you can get a much better deal from it.

  • I am currently on a long distance relationship. Doing some of these are beyond my current budget seeing we are on opposite sides of the world. My idea is to craft a wonderful love poem or a letter sent to her. Since this is my forte, I think I can put a wider smile on her face.

    Speaking of getting the fit right, I did that once without knowing the size of her fingers. I bought her a simple ring. Her eyes lit up and then said to me “how did you know my size?” Getting the size right does matter. She kept it since.

  • Reading the section on flowers makes me wonder, if you bought the roses a week in advance, would they store successfully in a freezer at home? It might be harder to hide these from the recipient that way, but maybe they could stay in a friend’s freezer? I’m curious if anyone has ever tried it, or if the price is any cheaper a week before Valentine’s Day than they are on Valentine’s Day. It would be a fun experiment sometime!

  • I too am in a long distance relationship and she insists on ME making a big deal when it comes to Valentine’s Day (she has never bought me a single present in the five years we have been together as she rarely has any money) so this year I am taking her away for the weekend.

    When it comes to flowers I have used online sites to buy them in the past and have been very pleased with the service and quality, plus I scour Google for discount codes so I get them so much more cheaper than in a offline physical store.

  • Waiting to go on a Valentine’s getaway after Valentine’s day is a great idea. I never thought of it before. There are going to be major discounts even immediately after. Honestly, I think it would be no less special than going on the holiday itself. You can surprise your significant other with tickets or some kind of paper work on the 14th so they know you did not forget about them. Have a low key evening with a home made dinner in order to save money for the getaway.

    • I’d say that a post-Valentine’s getaway is just a vacation, though. It’s definitely not the same thing as celebrating on Valentine’s Day, so I see no reason to postpone a trip until after Feb. 14, at least if you’re trying to feel some of the Valentine’s Day magic. Otherwise, it’s just another vacation that can still be enjoyable, but it’s not the same thing.

  • The last few years I was doing very easy things like making homemade cards or a scrapbook. It may not seem like much but one of us always works around Valentines day or the days to follow so we don’t do much. We sometimes go to dinner but that really is about it. I think cooking at home is good though especially if done together.

    • Handmade items are always great Valentine’s gifts, and there’s nothing wrong with one partner being busy on the day. There’s always time to find at least something small to do, and I’d have to agree on cooking together with your loved on for a Valentine’s meal. That’s actually what I’m thinking about doing this year, although I’m not sure yet.

  • I’m not sure what I’m going to do for Valentine’s Day next weekend, but I will be spending the day with my partner. We’re still trying to make plans, but we’re probably going to go get dinner and dessert rather than exchanging gifts or anything like that. We’re not that big on gift giving. We prefer going out and doing things.

    • My boyfriend and I have not talked about it at all except on one occasion. It was very brief, consisting of him mostly cringing at the thought of Valentine’s day. I am a tad bit worried about how things will turn out. I know I am not planning on purchasing a gift. We’re both broke. I figured I would write or make something instead.

  • Nice ideas and great statistics provided for Valentine’s day. I agree that Valentine’s day is a special time of year and should be spent with your special lady. Chocolates and flowers are so ordinary so I will be switching it up this year. This year I will take your advice and cook for my princess! I believe cooking from the heart instead of chocolates will display my romantic creativity.

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