How To: Celebrate Valentine's Day Without Breaking the Bank

Valentine’s Day is almost here! Finding the right way to express your love to your significant other, your best friend, your Galentine’s Day girlfriends, or your kids can be a challenge.


Traditional flowers and candy are sweet, but they can lose their novelty. Dinner out and fancy gifts can be expensive!


If you want to save some money and give your loved one a Valentine’s Day to remember, we’re here to help. Explore these fun ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day (or Galentine’s Day!) without breaking the bank!


DIY Valentine’s Day Gifts and Crafts:

Mason Jar Bouquets:

Turn the traditional gift of flowers on its head with this cute idea from the blog Design Improvised! Find glass mason jars online, at a home store, or from a secondhand store. You can use glass markers, hot glue guns, and other supplies to customize the jars with a special message! Then, put fresh or faux flowers in an arrangement for your special someone.


Custom candy box for him:

Get innovative by using a generic plastic organizer to create a thoughtful gift for him! This DIY candy box from the Mama Miss blog utilizes an organizer typically used for crafting or storing household items to create a custom gift. Fill each box with candy and top it off with a handwritten note for a fun (and reusable) Valentine’s Day surprise!


Date Night Jar:

Especially on Valentine’s Day, the “dinner and a movie” date night can feel stale. Mix things up together with a DIY date night jar like this one from Tastefully Eclectic! Pick up a mason jar and craft sticks or popsicle sticks to get started. You and your valentine can write down a variety of date night ideas – from outdoor adventures to quiet nights in – and take turns pulling from the jar when you want to spend quality time together. This simple activity can help you bond and think of creative ways to enjoy each other’s company.



Want more on saving money on gifts? Check out our blog post “How Much Should You Spend on Graduations, Wedding Gifts, and Birthday Gifts?”.



No-Cost Valentine’s Day Gifts and Activities:

No phones for one night: In today’s digital-drenched world, enjoying a mindful evening without distraction can be a challenge. You and your valentine can implement a “no phone” night by leaving your devices in another room, and agree not to check your devices until the morning! Spend the evening with board games, your favorite TV show, or with another fun activity. The choice is yours! This simple, no-cost Valentine’s Day idea can help you plug into your connection with the one you love.


Hand-written letter: Take Valentine’s Day back in time with old-school letter writing. Grab a sheet of paper and a nice pen to write a romantic poem. Or, get your favorite markers and stickers and channel your inner kid with a cute drawing! There’s no wrong way to do it. Make the message heartfelt, and your valentine will want to hang it on the refrigerator.


Secret notes: Use the element of surprise with this no-cost Valentine’s Day activity! The night before Valentine’s Day, take a stack of Post-It Notes and write down sweet or funny notes for your valentine. Leave them in places you know they’ll find them like the bathroom mirror, the car dashboard, or the refrigerator. They’ll be pleasantly surprised by the effort and appreciate the gesture.


Enjoy a homemade dinner by candlelight at home: This classic no-cost Valentine’s Day activity brings the traditional “dinner and a movie” date night home. Find a recipe you’ll both enjoy, light some candles, and cook a meal together. Enjoy it together phone-free for an added bonus! This simple activity is a relaxing way to spend time together.


Lower-Cost Valentine’s Day Date Ideas:

Book Valentine’s Day breakfast or lunch: If schedules allow, opt for a breakfast or lunch date rather than dinner. Dinner reservations on Valentine’s Day can be hard to land, not to mention pricey at some establishments. You could experience fewer crowds and a lower-priced meal when you book another time of the day.


Indulge in coffee and dessert at a nice restaurant: Love the idea of an evening out? Have a lower-cost meal at home and dress up for dessert on the town! Savor a cup of coffee and your favorite dessert together to get the experience of Valentine’s Day dinner without the hefty price tag.


Purchase a Groupon deal: If you and your valentine are looking for some adventure, try something new on Groupon! You can find deals on couples massages, cooking classes, hotel stays, events, and more. Choose your next adventure together and enjoy the savings.



Looking for a gift guide? Check out our post “50 Best Holiday Gifts Under $50”.