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Save, Splurge or Skip: Valentine’s Day Gift Survival Guide for Men

Planning the perfect Valentine's Day for your wife or girlfriend can be incredibly stressful. Making hard-to-get reservations, picking out the right gift and sending cards and flowers is a lot to juggle, and making sure it all goes smoothly is even more overwhelming. 

Luckily, we've narrowed down what's really important for a fun and successful Valentine's Day with your lady. You want to make sure she feels loved and appreciated, but you also want to make sure you don't break the bank in the process.

Check out what you need, what you can save on and what you can totally skip this Valentine's Day.


What to Splurge On

Flowers: If you remember nothing else, at least remember to order her some flowers. Not only do they make for a gorgeous display she can admire for days, but the thought and time that went into picking out the perfect bouquet and having it sent to her will absolutely make her day. And quality flowers means a quality, long-lasting arrangement. Check out the gorgeous options on 1-800-Flowers.com.

Special, Personalized Gift: The typical Valentine’s Day gifts are all well and good, but try to think about something that is truly unique to her. Did she casually mention she wanted something for Christmas that she never got? How about picking something out that reminded you of a special moment you two shared together? Taking the time to find the perfect gift or have something specially made will make for a gift she’ll cherish forever. 


What to Save On

Over-the-Top Dinner Reservations: Booking a table at a n exclusive 5-star restaurant is a nice gesture, but after drinks, a couple courses and desserts, you’re dropping some serious cash that could have been spent on a nice piece of jewelry (or a down payment on a car). Sometimes, cooking for her at home can be even more romantic, and proves you took the time and effort to make something truly special for her. With a few candles, some freshly mixed cocktails and the right music, a surprise homemade dinner is something she’ll never forget. (If you’re seriously challenged in the kitchen, find a local restaurant that is famous for it’s killer food, not it’s over-the-top décor).

Expensive concert tickets: Unless it’s her absolute favorite band, and she’s been bugging you about these tickets for months, your money is better spent on looking for local live music in a more intimate setting. This way, you can still enjoy each other’s company without the overwhelming crowd, and support local art at the same time. Check out Local Music Vibe for some concert listings in your area.

Gaudy jewelry: Diamonds are always appreciated, but think before you decide to drop a ridiculous amount of money on a cliché gift from a mall jeweler. Unless you are 100 percent sure she wants a certain piece of bling, your money is probably better spent on a more personalized gift, such as an engraved bracelet or picture frame.


What to Skip

Oversized stuffed animals: Nobody needs those. Like ever. They just take up space in her apartment and will get super annoying. Same goes for regular-sized stuffed animals. They will most likely end up in the Goodwill donation pile by March.

Balloons: Even if they are attached to flowers, what’s the point? Save these for when someone has a baby or a kids’ birthday party.

Expensive wine or champagne: Odds are, she won’t know the difference between the $80 bottle and the $25 bottle, as long as the label doesn’t say Yellow Tail or Andres.

Too out-of-the-box date night ideas: Signing up for a mixology class together? Super fun and sexy. Signing her up for skydiving without her knowledge? Maybe not the best idea. While it’s always great to try and be creative, pulling the wool over her eyes will most likely end in disaster.

Most of all, know your partner. If she’s terrified of heights, don’t take her on a hot air balloon ride. If she’s a major foodie, then booking a table at that restaurant she’s always wanted to try might just be your best bet. The bottom line is Valentine’s Day should be about showing how much you love and appreciate your partner. Find something she’ll appreciate and cherish forever, and make memories by spending time together and bonding. And make sure you stay within budget. Going all-out means nothing if you can’t pay your rent that month. 

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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