L2G: Love well
on a budget!
Money saving tips for your best Valentine’s Day ever
You can’t have failed to notice that it’s Valentine’s Day! As soon as Christmas and New Year were over, shops began to stock up with the predictable array of red cards, hearts, flowers, cuddly toys and the like. Love is all around, apparently.
Many of us rebel against this blatant commercialism. But no matter how strongly we feel that this year we won’t get dragged into it all, it still has a subtle influence on us. Like it or not, it makes us feel that we need to do “something” for Valentine’s Day. But what?
The problem is that if you do decide to do something special for your loved one, everything is just so expensive. Yes it’s a nice idea to go out for a meal together, but many restaurants put on some kind of Valentine’s special: which often means a much higher price than usual. So if you are on a tight budget it either means you can’t go to these kind of places – or if you do, your evening will be spoiled because you’ll be worrying about the bill.
So what can you do on Valentine’s Day that doesn’t cost the earth? Here are a few ideas that may help:
- Come dine with me
A romantic dinner for two is nice on Valentine’s Day, but why throw money away on an overpriced restaurant? Cook something special at home. It doesn’t have to be expensive, just something your partner will enjoy. Even better if you can prepare it in advance so that you can relax on the evening as well. Or you may choose to have an indoor picnic instead!
As you’re saving money on food, why not splash out on a bottle of champagne to enjoy together: there are lots of good deals from supermarkets especially for Valentine’s Day so take advantage of these.
But the most important thing is that you enjoy time together, so either make sure that the kids are tucked up in bed early or arrange a sleepover for them with family or friends. Light the candles, put on some of your partner’s favourite music, and enjoy your exclusive dinner together.
- Romantic walk
February weather can be unpredictable. There have been years when we’ve had heavy snow around this time of year but others when it has been mild and even sunny. So if we do get pleasant weather this Valentine’s Day then a romantic walk would be lovely.
If you can go during the day, find either some beautiful countryside near to you or take the time to explore the nooks and crannies of your nearest large town or city. Why not take something with you to eat and drink? It doesn’t have to be a full picnic: probably too chilly for that! But a flask of tea or coffee – or maybe something stronger – and a few snacks would be perfect.
If you are doing a night walk then perhaps try to base it on a theme, such as churches or historical houses or reputedly haunted spots. Then finish by warming up in a cosy pub for a little night cap.
Night or day, most of us have never taken the time to explore our local area fully, so now just might be that time!
- Recreate your first date
No matter how long you have been together, your first date will always be special. So why not recreate it as far as you can? You may not be able to go to exactly the same place but either find somewhere similar – or re-enact it in your own home.
The main thing is to reminisce about the people that you were then. Think about your expectations for that first date: what did you think of them, did you ever expect it to last? How did you feel before the date; were you nervous? What did you wear? What did you talk about on that night?
It can be great fun looking back and then marvelling on how far you have come since then. A lovely nostalgic way to spend Valentine’s Day.
- Treasure hunt
Gifts do not have to be expensive: there is a lot of truth in the old saying that it’s the thought that counts. Many people actually prefer small personal gifts to something more extravagant. So this year why not delight your partner with lots of small gifts that demonstrate how well you know them and how much you love them?
A lovely idea is then to make a treasure hunt with these gifts. Hide them all around the house with clues leading from one to the next. Your partner will love the gifts and have fun finding them. A much nicer way to spend an evening than shelling out a small fortune in a crowded restaurant!
- Movie night
We all love the movies and this is a movie night with a difference, because you and your partner have the leading roles! You are going to watch your story. It will take a bit of advance preparation but will be well worth it.
You need to locate as many video clips of the two of you as you can, and get them roughly into chronological order. If you are short of good clips, or there are some gaps at certain stages, then find photographs to supplement the videos. You might even want to produce a little programme to go with it, with information about what you are going to see and who is featured in it: similar to what you would get in a theatre.
Then on the night you can sit down with your favourite drinks and snacks and enjoy looking back on your journey together.
We hope that these ideas will help you to have the best Valentine’s Day ever without breaking the bank! For more money saving tips from Loans2Go check back here soon. Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Loans 2 Go.