Valentine’s Day Date Night on the Cheap
Much like New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day and the desire to get out and celebrate for the night can end up leading to some not-so-lovely splurges that you may regret in the morning.
Don’t let the holiday spending hangover happen to you.
Instead celebrate your love in a way that won’t break the budget.
Here are a few ideas for Valentine’s Day date night on the cheap:
Cook a special dinner together at home instead of fighting crowds of fellow lovebirds at the restaurants. The key word here is “together”. This is not the time for one of you to be slaving away in the kitchen, while the other falls asleep on the couch. Make the cooking process part of the date itself. Grab a bottle of wine and get cooking. Since you’re saving on restaurant markup (and tips and, potentially, a babysitter, if you just cook a late dinner after the kids go to bed), you can “splurge” a little at the grocery store on your meal. Try making sushi together or put some steaks on the stove to sizzle.
Get outside your comfort zone
Admittedly we’re mostly a dinner-and-a-movie couple, too. And movie night totally has its place. Take this opportunity, though, to switch things up a bit and get out of your normal routine. Head to the bowling alley or roller rink for some friendly and frugal competition.
Sometimes the most cultured dates are also the most budget-friendly. Check the event calendar for your local bookstores or universities to see if there’s a love-themed (or not) reading in town. Or make a late-night coffee date and take in some live music at a local cafe. Do any nearby museums offer nights with free or low-cost admission? Take a stroll and be inspired by art or history as you celebrate your own history together.
Have you and your partner made a resolution to get fit in the new year? No time like Valentine’s Day to get those hearts racing! Find a 5K and run (or jog or walk) it together. Believe it or not, there are even Valentine-themed runs scheduled for mid-February that encourage couples to run as a team. Search for runs and other activities offered in your area at active.com.
Get active in your community
Skip the restaurant lines and spend the day or evening together truly sharing the love. Choose your favorite charity and volunteer together. You could share your love of reading by planning a book drive or by reading to senior citizens in a senior community. Help stock your neighborhood food pantry. Do either of you have a special skill? Volunteer to teach kids or seniors a new hobby. Donate your time together and see how your love blossoms while lending a hand to others.
However you spend your Valentine’s Day together, know that the important thing is what you’re celebrating (your love for each other), not how you choose to celebrate it.