Red roses, boutique chocolates, and expensive dinners are often the hallmark of the year’s most romantic holiday, Valentine’s Day. But spoiling your loved one can be costly.

ME Banks’ 2020 Love and Money survey found that on average, couples spend $150 on gifts and dates, with married couples and millennials likely to spend over $200 on their partner. Due to this, a growing number of Australians are choosing to forfeit the loved-up holiday in order to save money. Rather than ditching the romance this Valentine’s Day, we have come up with a list of gift and date ideas so that you can celebrate the love without parting with your savings:
  1. Why drop a fortune at a fancy restaurant when you can create a five-star experience at home. If you enjoy cooking, put your culinary skills to good use and make a meal you know they will enjoy.

  2. Gone are the days of mixed tapes, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create a special playlist to let them know how much they mean to you. Creating a Spotify playlist that can be shared between the two of you is a thoughtful way of saying I love you.

  3. If it’s hard to get out the house with young children and sleep is minimal, a lie-in and breakfast in bed is the perfect way to honour Valentine’s Day.

  4. Why not put your Netflix account to good use and create your own home theatre for a night? Make your own popcorn and snacks, set up your seats with pillows and blankets and put on a movie you both want to watch. Voila, a private home cinema!

  5. Weather permitting, a picnic can be a great way to get outside and enjoy some fancy finger food without the cost. Pack some snacks and head out to one of Adelaide’s picturesque picnic spots. 

  6. Adelaide has so much to offer! A short walk around the CBD will uncover paddle boats, the central market, free art trails, disk golf, bike paths and much more. Visit the link for more ideas. 

  7. What says I love you more than some handmade, heart-shaped cookies. For the full effect, finish by wrapping the cookies in some cellophane and decorative ribbon.

  8. If you’re in the mood for some DIY, try creating a picture or scrap book reflecting your time together. If you don’t have any printed photos of you both together, stores such as Kmart and Officeworks have booths where you can get photographs developed, as well as a range of art supplies for a low cost.

  9. Unfortunately, flowers tend to rise in price for Valentine’s Day. Try picking some fresh blooms from your backyard or on your morning walk, you’ll be surprised what you can find in the local park or pathways – just make sure you’re not taking from your neighbour’s garden.

  10. Find it hard to state your affections? Writing a letter with a special message for your loved one is a priceless and unique way to show how much you care and putting your words on paper means they get to keep it forever.

  11. For couples who love the outdoors, South Australia has many walking trails for all fitness levels, duration, and terrain. If you’re a couple who like to spend time together being active and experiencing South Australia’s beautiful landscape, grab your hiking boots and find a suitable walking trail. 

  12. While boardgames don’t always bring out the best in some people, they can be a great way to spend some time together without digital distractions. Organise some snacks, find a puzzle, card or board game that you can enjoy together, and you’ll be set for a cosy night in.

  13. There are some great websites that offer highly discounted vouchers for a range of restaurants and activities throughout South Australia. Try websites such as Groupon, Scoopon, and Catch of the Day to find cheaper activities or gifts - the perfect way to save money while still celebrating Valentine’s Day in style.

  14. Want to spoil the whole family with love, including the children and fur babies? There are lots of full family-friendly activities throughout Adelaide, so grab your children (real and fur) and head to a pet-friendly park, café or market. Click here for a list of pet and family friendly venues.
At the end of the day, spending time together is what Valentine’s Day is all about. Turn off your phone and spend some quality time together, whether going for a walk, watching a movie, or simply enjoying a distraction-free dinner at home.