Valentine’s Day is viewed as a consumer holiday spent on candy, greeting cards, flowers, jewelry, clothes, gift certificates, and a romantic night out. According to the National Retail Federation, U.S. consumers are expected to spend a total of $18.2 billion dollars, averaging $136.57 per person this Valentine’s Day.
Here are some alternatives for budgeting love over money this Valentine’s Day — and for any of you anti-Valentine’s readers out there… Remember these ideas are for any time of the year—not just Valentine’s Day. These frugal and thoughtful ideas can be very helpful, especially if you’re in college and on a tight budget.
1. Share an Experience.
The National Retail Federation states that “gifts of experience,” are most popular this Valentine’s Day. Although this is the most popular, it is estimated that only 24% of gift givers will actually give an experience as a gift.
There are plenty of ways to create laughter and fun memories without breaking the bank:
- Go for a hike or take a walk in nature
- Explore local food trucks or check out a local festival
- Try something silly—be a kid again
Did you know that emotional memories are more likely to stick with you in the long term? The mental peace and happiness you experience is something money can’t provide. Start brainstorming what memories you want to create today.
2. Get Cooking!
Valentine’s Day is a great way to spend quality time at home wearing comfortable clothes, celebrating and relaxing with your family and friends. Cooking actually does help you relax! Grab your favorite person, pick out a recipe, and get cooking.
3. Be Sweet, Write a Note.
Kind and thoughtful words can have a stronger impact than material goods. Handwritten notes are a great way to express thanks. After all, you only need some creative thinking, paper, and something to write with. It’s all about appreciating loved ones—a small act of kindness can go a long way.
Try to make this Valentine’s Day more meaningful, creative, and thoughtful rather than spending loads of money. If you’re on a budget, stick to it! Don’t blow off all your money management efforts just for a holiday. Wait to do that until you’re a billionaire or until someone finally invents those money-growing trees!