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Home » Relationships

Cheap Valentine’s Day Gifts

Submitted by on Sunday, 8 February 2009No Comment

In these tough economic times, how can you woo your partner on Valentine’s Day, and still not break your ever-tightening budget?  There are cheap alternatives to diamonds and pearls, and if you opt to go cheap this Valentine’s Day, it doesn’t mean you are cheap.  Lets call it being practical and still very thoughtful.  After all, it is the thought that counts the most on Valentine’s Day, isn’t it?

valentinesgiftBefore I get to my idea for a Valentine’s Day gift that your partner will love that is practically free, I wanted to share with you a few interesting Valentine’s Day statistics from the LIFE Foundation‘s recent Valentine’s Day survey.  (These stats were sent to me from the LIFE Foundation, who also have an idea for a Valentine’s Day gift – Life Insurance.  Sound interesting?  You can read about it at insureyourlove.org).  Here are the stats:

• Seven out of ten Americans (70%) would forgo celebrating Valentine’s Day this year in exchange for financial peace of mind.
• Nearly half (44%) of those surveyed would rather receive practical gifts this Valentine’s Day, such as money towards bills or gas, as opposed to more traditional gifts.
• Forty-two percent of those Americans who received a Valentine’s Day gift last year don’t think their gift was memorable and nearly half (48%) lamented that it lasted a month or less!

What do these stats tell us (me)?

  1. Your partner would rather be financially stable than receive any gift at all (so if you are going to give a gift, might as well give one that doesn’t break the bank).
  2. There is a near 50% chance that your partner would like a practical gift.
  3. Many traditional Valentine’s Day gifts are perceived as not being memorable and not lasting long enough.

So forget about roses and chocolates.  They are expensive, last about a week (of if you are in my house, those chocolates will last about a day), have zero practicality and can be easily forgotten (unless this is the one and only time you will ever buy them for her).

Here’s my suggestion:

Give your partner a set of personal “coupons”.  (If you think it sounds lame, it really isn’t – read on -)

Unless you are still living in the stone age, chances are you have a printer to go with the computer you are reading this on.  Type up some nice things you will do for your partner, print them up, cut them out, put them in a nice envelope or box with a bow, and you’re done.  Its quick, easy, inexpensive, and can be done from the comfort of your home.  Best of all, depending on how many coupons you give, this gift will last more than a month, can give you the opportunity to make great memories together, can be very practical, and keeps you financially stable.

Here are some coupon ideas:

  • you serve her breakfast in bed
  • you do her household chores for a week (i.e. if she usually does the vacuuming, you do it for a week instead)
  • various massages (done by you, of course)
  • you cook her favourite meal for her (and clean up afterwords)
  • you take the kids out and give her an afternoon off
  • you arrange for babysitting and have an evening out together (doesn’t have to be an expensive evening out, it could be as simple as going out for a walk and a coffee)

I’m sure you can think of many more ideas and even come up with some that are more personalized to your partner and your relationship.  You know what she likes and appreciates.

Love Buns and I exchanged coupons for each others birthdays and we had a lot of fun with it.  Just getting them and reading them was fun.  You can make them funny and use inside jokes to give your partner a laugh.  For example, I like to perform magic, and like most magician’s wives, Love Buns is the worst audience ever.  She gave me a coupon promising that she would watch me perform 3 magic tricks.  I laughed my ass off.

So if you are scrambling for a Valentine’s Day gift, with only a week to go, this is something you can do right now, just by opening up your favourite word processor and connecting your printer.

But before you do that, leave a comment to let us know your practical and inexpensive Valentine’s Day gift ideas!

Flickr photo courtesy of Cláudia*~Assad

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