It's February, and you know what that means: Valentine's Day is right around the corner! If you're like most of us, you're probably already stressing over what to buy, where to go, and what it's going to cost you.
But wait! You don't have to spend your whole savings account on a special Valentine's Day for your person. Instead, check out these suggestions to find out how you can save money on Valentine's Day while still having a special time with your special someone!
Compare Prices Before You Buy
If you and your significant other plan to exchange gifts on Valentine's Day, don't wait until the last minute to splurge. Instead, plan ahead, identify the item you want to buy, and check out prices from competing distributors. You might find that one company offers the same gift for far cheaper, but you wouldn't have known that if you'd bought it on February 13!
And remember, your Valentine's gifts don't have to be fancy jewelry or expensive luxury presents. A practical household item or improvement could prove much more useful to you and your significant other, and was probably already on your to-buy list!
Don't Eat Out, Cook In!
Unless your plan is to pop the question, make a grand announcement, or propose some other huge life decision, you really don't have to drain your savings on a fantastic dinner. All your significant other really cares about on Valentine's Day is you — so why don't you treat them to a night in with a home-cooked meal!
Even if you aren't an aspiring chef, on Valentine's Day, you can pretend you are. There are literally millions of recipes and how-to guides online to show you exactly what you need to prepare a feast for you and your favorite person. And with the money you save on dinner, you might be able to buy them some of that awesomely discounted post-Valentine's Day jewelry after all!
Go to Lunch Instead of Dinner
If you absolutely must go out for a celebratory feast, opt for lunch instead of dinner. Prices are often cheaper at mid-day, so you can save a lot of money on your Valentine's Day meal. Many restaurants also provide special meal deals for lunch. You can likely afford to order an appetizer, drinks and dessert if you stick to the lower-priced lunch entrees.
Shop Smart for Flowers
Don't order through a national online store. Instead, go to your local florist in person, where you may find deals that aren't available online. You can also check out flowers at the grocery store or big warehouse stores. The quality is usually just as good as what you'd find online. Or make your Valentine last for months by purchasing a potted plant instead of flowers. Plants are cheaper, and they remind your Valentine of your love for a longer time.
Do Things Around the House to Show You Care
On Valentine's Day, you don't have to spend any money to show your love. Do you have a honey-do list that's a mile long? Tackle the projects your significant other has been asking you to finish. Nothing will compare to the smile on their face when you say you finally replaced the dryer's lint screen or built the bird feeder for your yard.
Create Your Own Valentine
If you aren't looking to buy something big, and you already have a flair for the creative, you might consider creating something from the heart for your loved one.
But even if it looks no better than the macaroni art you made in kindergarten, your SO will recognize the hard work and care you put into making something truly unique. They'll cherish the gift just as much or more than they would something created on an assembly line.
Fun & Frugal Valentine's Day Ideas
This year, you may want to try something a little bit different. Here are easy and inexpensive ways to spend the day with your favorite person.
At-Home Movie Marathon
Everyone loves movies! So, if you know your significant other's favorite genre, load up on movies. There may not be many Blockbusters around anymore, but there are a ton of movies you've never seen available on streaming services.
Tell your significant other you want to spend a romantic evening on the couch cuddling and watching movies, and they'll surely love the idea!
Picnic in the Park
A lot of really fun Valentine's Day date ideas involve putting a new twist on an old classic. Going for a picnic might sound a little cliche, but think about it: when was the last time you actually went on a picnic?
If the two of you are the outdoorsy type, you can always go to a public park for zero cost and set up a picnic spread on a big comfy blanket. The only cost to you will be the food (and maybe a bottle of wine), and the rest of the day is yours to enjoy!
If you've already established yourselves as outdoor lovers, maybe you'd like to take it to its furthest extent. As one of the more romantic ideas on this post, going out together into the great outdoors can be both very cheap, and exciting.
The thrill of being in the middle of some remote part of Texas, outside of areas like Longview or Waco, can be an incredible bonding experience. You'll get to prove to each other your worth as survivalists, making campfires, cooking food without the aid of electricity and other staples of modern living, and sleeping under the stars.
Don't knock it till you try it -- a camping adventure with your loved one is always a blast! Just don't forget the bug spray.
Extreme Outdoor Activities
Here's what separates boys and girls from men and women. If you and your partner are in shape (or could use some exercise to get into better shape, let's be honest) you might want to spend a frugal Valentine's Day pushing yourselves to the limit.
Activities like rock climbing, bike riding, longboarding, kayaking, or hiking can be not only extremely memorable but also rewarding. After spending the whole day together testing your endurance and stamina, you'll find no better ending than relaxing and patting yourselves on the back for your accomplishments.
Cook Dinner Together
Cooking can be very romantic. Getting in the kitchen together shows off a new side of you and your partner, and you may be surprised at how much you learn about one another. Unlike so many other Valentine's gift ideas, you don't even have to leave your home.
Find a recipe you both like online, and shop for ingredients together. Divide up duties to make the feast, and see whose strengths come out as you slice, dice, and marinate. The best part is the tasty reward at the end.
Make a Money Limit and Have Fun With It
One of our favorite Valentine's Day ideas for her or him is also one of the cheapest. Challenge each other to find the perfect gift for $5. Make this sincere. No cheesy gag gifts. You can find something appropriate if you use your creative side. You also can show your significant other how well you know them by finding the right gift for a low price.
Create a Coupon Book
If you want no-money Valentine's day ideas, this one is a winner. Make coupons offering your partner special moments, such as a massage, a homecooked meal, laundry duty for a week or a "get out of bedtime duty with the kids" card. You will have fun thinking of things you like to do together, and a homemade gift always comes off as more sincere. Plus, this gift is absolutely free.
Make a Special Card
Here's another free gift idea: create a homemade card using things around the house, and choose a theme to commemorate your time together. Maybe you both like kayaking or have a show that you watch together. It will mean more when you put sincere thought into the card and what you want to convey with it.
Write a Love Letter
This is one of the great ideas for Valentine's Day that never goes out of style — writing a love letter. Put all the sentiments you have ever had down on paper to help your significant other understand why you love them and the depth of that love.
It doesn't cost anything to write a letter, but the memories will last forever — and most likely, your partner will keep the card forever, too.
Here's something for the gamers out there -- or even just the casual fan of video games, board games, roleplaying games, card games, you name it.
A Valentine's Day spent playing your favorite games together can be just as rewarding as a wilderness bonding experience. By working together to solve problems and reach gaming goals, you can have just as much fun as spending the night on the town. And it's one of the cheapest options on this list!
Make Your Own Memories
One of the best ways to treat every Valentine's Day is to focus on experiences over purchases. If you know you cannot or should not spend a huge sum of money on making the day special, you can always find alternatives. Go out into nature, or go explore a part of a city the two of you have never been to. You probably know your significant other better than anyone, so make time for them and treat them to something they'll think about for years to come.
Remember, just because it's an important day in your relationship does not mean that your lover wants you to drive yourself into debt just to show them a good time. Be careful with your purchases, plan ahead, and come out on February 15th happier than ever!
And remember, if you want to really blow your partner's mind but need a little help with the financing, there's always the option of a quick and easy personal loan from Atlas Credit, which has locations throughout Virginia, Oklahoma, and Texas. We can lend you up to $1,500 that you can pay back at your own pace. Plan in advance and use our tips on how to save money on Valentine's Day with your sweetheart. Contact Atlas Credit before Valentine's Day to learn more!