7 Valentine’s Day ideas that won’t break the bank

Valentines Day 2013 banner

Yes, it’s probably the most commercial celebration after Christmas, but one can’t help but want to be part of what’s supposed to be the most romantic day of the year. After all, who doesn’t love feeling loved?

But we know how February 14 can put quite the dent in your wallet, so we’ve put together seven ways you can still celebrate Valentine’s Day without having to break the bank.

1) Get frisky in the day
Instead of waiting until dark — if at all — why not start the day right by getting frisky between the sheets. (We would suggest taking the day off work though, as rushing through sexy time at the crack of dawn probably won’t appeal to most people.)

7 Valentine’s Day ideas that won’t break the bank
Image: Getty

Prepare breakfast together, sans clothes of course, and enjoy it in bed as you lounge on fresh sheets and rose petals. Throw in some sensual niceties like a bubble bath, relaxed conversation or champagne, and get sweaty in the daylight. Who would have thought getting naughty would be so nice? And best of all, it’s free!

2) Celebrate before/after

This year, Valentine’s Day falls in the middle of the work week on a Thursday, which may put a kink in romantic dinner plans. Why not celebrate on the weekend before or after instead? If you have kids, plan for them to have a sleepover while you have your own, either at home or at one of these staycation venues. Set up a tray of luxe aphrodisiacal delights such as oysters, caviar, chocolate and champagne.

In this way, you can avoid the hectic rush on February 14 and will be able to enjoy the romantic holiday without work hanging over your head, and Valentine’s markups from retailers and restaurants.

3) Go on a romantic movie marathon
Forget about jostling with the other couples on their movie-dinner mission. Stay in and share a bowl of popcorn as you both watch that movie you’ve been dying to see or an old favourite. You can also relive your early dating days by watching the first movie you ever watched together, or simply pick a few from this list of most romantic movie moments for inspiration.

4) Share a gift
Love is all about caring and sharing, so why not combine your finances and get one gift you both can enjoy together. It could be anything from a practical item like a coffee machine for caffeine junkie couples, something kinky like a sex toy you’ll both enjoy, or something a bit more indulgent like a couples spa package.

5) Make your own vouchers

Giving the gift of experience is a creative and personal present that your partner will appreciate more than any store-bought gift. Write out vouchers for anything from a massage to a romantic dance. Another good option is to offer an IOU for a chore your partner dislikes to do, or a “get out of jail” card where your man can redeem something like “winning an argument, no questions asked”.

6) Make a book of memories
How about starting something you can work on over the years by creating an album made up of just Valentine’s Day memories? All you need is a camera to fill up with snaps of your day. Photos of each other, food, places you went to or just interesting things you found along the way — basically anything to remind you of your time together — will all add up to a collage of incredible sentimental value.

7) Go on a playful picnic
The go-to romantic idea for couples on a budget, a picnic is not only cheap, it’s also thoughtful. Put together a picnic basket of all your sweetie’s favourite foods and we guarantee he’ll be as touched as he will be impressed. Also, being outside a bustling restaurant and cuddling in a beautiful park will create plenty of intimacy, which may lead to memorable night.