There's no need to blow your budget on Valentine's Day this year. You can show your love and appreciation for your significant other while saving money.
It may be traditional to buy a dozen roses for your sweetheart on Valentine's Day. It can also be expensive. The bouquet lasts about a week, which is sad when you think of the $60 you spent on the gesture.
If buying flowers is a precious tradition, try to make it more personal. Choose blooms in your significant other's favorite color instead. Check your local grocery store's floral department for great deals on beautiful bouquets that won’t break the bank.
Cards can get expensive too, especially if you are considering a specialty card that plays music. You can easily pay $10 to $15 for a lovely Valentine's Day card. If you feel like the card is non-negotiable, head to your local dollar store or discount retailer to find a beautiful selection of cards that cost $1 or $2. This is a great place to grab Valentine’s Day cards for your kids as well, either from you or if they give them out at school.
When you buy a heart-shaped box full of tiny bites of chocolate, you pay for the box, not the good stuff inside. Instead of spending $15-50 on Valentine's Day-themed chocolate, shop for premium chocolate without the branding. Or consider your loved one's preferences and buy their favorite snack. In some cases, three bags of their beloved Hot Cheetos could earn you more points than the biggest heart-shaped box of sugary milk chocolate.
The dinner reservation
If there's a lot of pressure on Valentine's Day to get a reservation at a nice restaurant, try to think of something original. Some lower-fare restaurants like Waffle House even take reservations for Valentine’s day. Would a picnic at the park, or with a scenic view be more fun? Don't be afraid to be creative. These type of Valentine's Day outings make the best stories. Anyone can make a reservation and drop $100 on dinner. Do something special. You could even cook his or her favorite meal instead.
If you don't have a significant other on Valentine's Day, you don't have to stay home. Organize a small dinner party for your single friends and serve appetizers. Put together a movie marathon, get out of the house and go see a local band, or sing karaoke with friends. There's more than one way to celebrate this fun holiday, and it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.
Learning to manage a budget becomes a fairly simple task with a bit of practice. Take a look at The Basics of Budgeting to get started.