Wednesday, February 8, 2017

23 Ideas for Your Best Cheap Romantic Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is coming, to the dread of many. More romance is something that most of us would love in our lives and society forces the issue in February. But, who has the time or the money for romance when there are bills to pay, work to do, kids to raise? Here are some inexpensive romantic ideas and strategies (can strategies be romantic?) that Mr. Awesome and I have shared in the past:

1) First of all, take turns! Valentine's never falls to just one of us. We take turns. One year one of us plans our anniversary and the other plans Valentine's Day and the next year it switches. This reduces the pressure on one partner. 

2) Communicate! This isn't just important in planning a big romance day like Valentine's, this is important for the strength of your relationship. Don't believe me, check out this article. I'm not saying let the cat out of the bag for your big plans, but if you're thinking the budget for the big day is $500 and she's thinking $50 you might end up in a big fight on the day you're supposed to be celebrating your love. (Trust me, I've been there.)

3) Get creative! Here are some Cheap and Fun Romantic Valentine's Ideas (A list within a list, things that fill me with joy!)

  1. Have a floor picnic in front of the fireplace in the living room.
  2. Make gifts together. Pick up some nontraditional flowers (i.e. not red roses that have a 2,000,000% mark up around V-Day) from the grocery store and watch YouTube tutorials together on flower arranging to make your own inexpensive bouquets. Or grab a roll of sugar cookie dough and some icing from the baking section and decorate sugar cookies together. Maybe pick up some strawberries and some Hershey's chocolate and make your own chocolate dipped strawberries. Get creative. 
  3. Write a story together...maybe even a naughty story.
  4. Act out your naughty story.
  5. Don't celebrate on the big day, pick another day. Mr. Awesome and I seldom celebrate on actual V-Day. Partially this is so we can spend the actual day sharing the love with family and partially this is because it's hard to be romantic when crammed into an overflowing restaurant that's maxed with desperate people trying to make love happen and getting grumpy at the slow service and food that wasn't given proper love by an over-harried cook in a busy kitchen.
  6. Run a bath and put a message in a bottle for your significant other.
  7. Two words: Massage Oil
  8. Choose Your Own Adventure cards. I once put together envelopes for each aspect of our day long celebration (breakfast, day time activity, lunch, afternoon activity, dinner, post dinner) and each envelope held three options so Mr. Awesome could choose his own adventure.  
  9. Be a tourist in your town. What does TripAdvisor have to offer in your community? Is there an art gallery you've never been to or a bowling alley down the street? What's your scene? For one Valentine's, I rented a boat at a nearby lake and packed a picnic. For 40 bucks we shared a memorable Valentine's Day. Sharing new experiences together is proven to strengthen relationships. 
  10. Play the thrift store game. Pick five categories (clothing item, accessory, home decor item, book, and free category, for example) and the you each get 30 minutes to pick an item for the other person in each of those categories that you think they would like best and least (10 items total). The person who curates the best collections gets $10 to spend at the thrift store on whatever they want. Playing this game, I discovered Mr. Awesome would actually do a pretty good job dressing me. Maybe he missed his calling in fashion. 
  11. Reminisce. Take a walk down the memory lane of your relationship. It's wonderful way to increase your positive feelings sharing memories of your various anniversaries, birthdays, holidays, trips, adventures, early dates, how you met, etc. 
  12. Take reminiscing one step further and recreate your first date
  13. Play silly games, especially snuggling together, like "If I were a beverage what would I be and why?" or "If I were a dog breed what breed would I be and why?" or "Would you rather? I.e. Would you rather live for six-months under the sea or visit the space station?"  This is a fun and cheap way to connect and learn about each other. We're forever learning about each other. 
  14. Plan your next trip. Boot up the computer or head to the library and wander through the travel section, grabbing books (or Pinterest pins) for any destination that catches your fancy. Pour a glass of wine and travel the world together. This also gives you something to look forward to too. 
  15. Be grateful. Take turns telling each other all the things the other person does that you appreciate. If you're a planner, you could write down one thing your partner did that you appreciated each day for the last month and then wrap it up and give it to them on V-Day. 
  16. Check out those discount websites: Groupon, LivingSocial,, or local news outlet deals, here in Utah KSL deals is a good option. We've used these resources to tour distilleries, get massages, ride in a hot air balloon, get meal deals, swim in a geothermal crater, and even bagged a vacation package for our anniversary trip to New Zealand. Just be sure to read all the fine print before you purchase.
  17. Take a class together. Common interests keep you connected and offer something to talk about over dinner other than bills and the behavior problems of co-workers, kids, or the world at large. One year, Mr. Awesome surprised me with an Italian cooking class for V-Day, which introduced us to the electric pressure cooker, now one of our most beloved cooking implements. 
  18. Get outdoors. Hike, snowshoe, cross country ski, downward ski, do whatever you like to do outdoors together. Being outdoors increases positive feelings. 
  19. Put together a tasting. Grab four or five dark chocolate bars or kinds of beef jerky and put together your own taste test. 
  20. Read poetry to each other. I imagine some of you want to gag at this suggestion, but there's no denying the romance of poetry. 

Wishing you the Happiest Valentine's Day. We would love to know your thoughts or creative ideas. Please share in the comments. 


  1. Looks good, guys. Very well written and organized. Bet lots of young couples will enjoy your suggestions for a romantic valentines.