Pink, red and white heart-shaped boxes decorated with vibrant roses, tied off with lacy ribbons that contain rows of small mystery-filled chocolates signify the valentine craze.
Valentine’s Day has always been a staple in relationships as a way to celebrate the love between people, since the 14th century when it became related to love. Many people plan elaborate date nights out to fancy restaurants or events, but a perfect Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to limit you to eating ramen for two weeks.
“Prices of dates should not increase because it’s a special day,” said Plattsburgh State student Andrew Coskey. “It should be more about just spending the day with your loved one, doing nice things for each other throughout the day and maybe going out and doing something that interests you both at a price you are both okay with spending.”
If you want to celebrate your feelings for someone, it shouldn’t be confined to an expensive night out or heart-shaped boxes of candy that last all of five minutes. Instead of spending about $60 to $70 for dinner and even more for flowers, you could rent movies for a few dollars or even borrow some from friends at no cost, except maybe a dash of dignity.
“I’d rather stay in, away from all the commotion of the holiday while saving money,” said PSUC sophomore Madison Odom.
In the U.S., one-fourth of all couples go out to eat for Valentine’s Day, according to research done by the National Restaurant Association.
One- fourth of the U.S. population would be out sitting, standing and conversing in restaurants, indeed causing a lot of commotion. Having a lot of people eating out means there are also many cars out on the road filled with couples trying to get from place to place, and having passengers in a car makes it 60 percent more likely that there will be a car accident that ends with a trip to the nearest hospital, according to Hancock Injury Attorneys. Staying in on Valentine’s Day and saving money could also not only save you from long lines at restaurants, but from an unwelcome trip to a hospital too.
“There isn’t an expectation to go out,” Odom said. “There’s an expectation to be together with your loved ones in any way possible.”
Since Valentine’s Day falls on a Wednesday this year it can be difficult to make plans to see someone in the middle of the week.
“I don’t have plans on Valentines day,” says Odom, “but I will be celebrating on another day.”
Feb. 14, the date of the day isn’t what should be important about valentines, it’s about showing love to the people you care about, rescheduling or having an unconventional Valentine’s Day for some reason should not take away from the meaning behind the holiday.
“The holiday doesn’t need to be advertised as much as it is,” Coskey said. “The ads for all the heart shaped candy and jewelry only make me look harder for a unique gift.”
Depending on your skill set and budget, there are many alternatives to the usual candy and flowers that accompany the holiday. Handmade items are always a good choice. If you can’t make something, then doing a favor such as bathing your significant others cats so they don’t have to later or doing some unplanned chores would also be a good alternative to an expensive and forgettable gift.
“Screw flowers that die in a few days,” Coskey said, “I’d rather do something meaningful and make memories.”
Email Abby Talcott at firstname.lastname@example.org