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Neighborhood Credit Union

5 Affordable, Yet Romantic, Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is 7 days away and you’ve probably been bombarded by commercials trying to spark ideas of what you should do for your special someone. If you happen to be short on cash this year, don’t sweat it. There’s plenty of things you can do to give your partner a great Valentine’s Day.

The trick is to think outside the box and not focus on the crowded restaurants and dark movie theatres. You’ll be surprised how romantic an untraditional Valentine’s Day can be.

Get crafty with your gift

We all know gifts can get expensive, but they don’t have to be. Just because you want to save money doesn’t mean you’re going to give a bad gift. Nothing says “I love you” and “You’re important to me” like a handmade, personalized gift.

Channel your inner creativity and make a card with a personalized note or funny saying that is special to your partner. If you’re skilled on the computer and like to make videos, make an audio/visual slideshow that tells the story of your relationship.

However, if your creativity is lacking and don’t think you can make a good gift, finding nontraditional gifts that appeal to your partner’s interests are great options. If they are a book worm, hit up your local book store where there are plenty of gift ideas your loved one will love. Just be sure you know what kind of books they like.

Cook dinner and stay in

Let’s face it, every restaurant is going to be packed. So why not skip the crowd, and higher prices, and have a romantic, candle-lit dinner in the comfort of your own dining room?

Guys, this next part is for you. If you don’t normally cook, think of a special meal you can make to surprise your significant other. It’s a simple gesture that will go a long way to show them how much you care. Not to mention, you may find out that you love to cook and want to do it more often.

Not only will you save money by avoiding fixed priced Valentine’s Day meals, but you and your loved one will be able to enjoy a peaceful dinner without the added distractions you normally get at a restaurant. And if you want to venture out for dessert and drinks after dinner, you’ll have some extra cash to do so.

Make it a game night

Ditch the standard fancy night on the town and break out the games! Video, board, and card games are great ways to spend time with people, so why not spend Valentine’s Day playing your favorite games with your favorite person?

Dust off the Scrabble board to see who the better wordsmith is, or be more adventurous and look to learn a new game. There are plenty of games you can buy if you don’t feel like spending a lot this Valentine’s Day. Go check out book stores, thrift stores, and online stores as well.

If you don’t have very many 2 player games, grab another couple and make it a double date!

Take a class or do a project together

Valentine’s Day is meant to be spending time with your partner and doesn’t require shelling out hundreds of dollars on dinner, drinks, and entertainment. If you both like to cook, take a cooking class together because it doesn’t cost a lot and will create a great memory for you both.

You can also work on a volunteer project as well. Now this doesn’t sound like a very romantic Valentine’s Day, but doing something together, making a difference, and getting to see your partner in a different light can help you both get closer. Plus it’s free.

Celebrate the weekend after

What? Don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day on Valentine’s Day?

Yes, we know this one might be met with some raised eyebrows. When Valentine’s Day falls on a weekday, like it did this year, it can be tough to have a romantic date night after you both get done with work. If you wait until the weekend to have your night out, or in, you won’t be tired and you’ll be able to save a good sum of money.

First of all, Valentine candy will be at least 50% off the day after. Be sure to stop by the store, grab your loved one’s favorite candy (if you can find it), and pay a fraction of what you normally would. If you choose to go out, you won’t have to deal with Valentine’s Day “specials” at restaurants where they offer fixed price, multi-course meals.

Most importantly, you will be able to truly spend the night together without having to worry about work tasks clouding your thoughts.

Bonus tip: If you can, take advantage of rewards and cash back features that can help you save even more money. Take MyNCU Rewards for example. You can save and earn cash back on restaurants and products that might make your Valentine’s Day even better.

See, who said you had to break the bank in order to have a nice date on Valentine’s Day? Now, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to treat your partner, but if you’re wanting to save a little this year, it’s definitely possible!