Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and according to the National Retail Federation, adults across the U.S. plan on spending an average of over $160 this year1 on their sweeties. That’s over eight months of cell phone service on a Republic Wireless 1GB plan! Since 40% of you plan on celebrating the holiday this year with a loved one2, we wanted to share some of our favorite date night ideas that won’t blow your budget. We believe that you don’t need to spend an arm and a leg to show your love and appreciation for your spouses, partners, friends, and family.
Date Night Ideas for Staying In
Planning a romantic night in is not only a smart financial choice, but it can also help you and your partner take time out of the busy hustle and bustle of everyday life to reground and reconnect. Some of our favorite home-based activities include:
- Cook together. Making a meal with your partner, no matter how simple or complex, is a wonderful way to improve your communication, learn a new skill, learn something new about each other, and create new memories. This Valentine’s Day, consider setting aside the time to cook something together that neither one of you has ever made before – it will be fun to challenge yourselves with some new ingredients, new flavor combinations, and new cooking techniques. Here are some of our favorite appetizer, entree, and dessert recipes. Or, share something from your childhoods with one another – maybe your dad’s award-winning rib recipe or your grandmother’s favorite flourless chocolate cake. However you do it, mixing love and fresh ingredients is always a recipe for success!
- Tackle a DIY project together. Speaking of improving your communication, checking a project off of your household to-do list together can have a serious positive impact on your relationship. While this activity may sound more stressful than romantic, if you pick something small and achievable, you can make it fun. Think about heading out to your local hardware store together to explore the paint chips aisle for that back bedroom you keep meaning to paint. Or, start thinking about your landscaping plans for the year – 50% of you told us that you plan on doing some gardening this spring2, and while it might be too early to start planting, it’s never too early to start planning. There are a number of free planning tools available to help you with your landscape design, and setting up a design competition with your sweetie could be a fun way to shake things up!
- Enjoy a game night. In the spirit of healthy competition, one of our favorite, low key ways to spend an evening with a loved one is by breaking out the board games and enjoying some snacks with hot chocolate or a nice wine. Scrabble, Yahtzee, and Phase 10 are some of the oldies but goodies, but if you prefer something a bit more fast-paced, we also love Bananagrams, Codenames Duet, and The Metagame.
Date Night Ideas for Going Out
Although we love a night out on the town at our favorite restaurant, we tend to avoid that same restaurant on Valentine’s Day – in our experience, restaurants can be noisy, overcrowded, and often overpriced with expensive prix fixe or other special menus on Valentine’s Day. That doesn’t mean you must be homebound in order to celebrate, though. If you do want to get out of the house, you can definitely do so without taking a hit to your wallet, and here are some of our favorite ideas:
- Out-on-the-town scavenger hunt.
Working together to achieve the same end goal is another fun way to reconnect with your partner, and one of our favorite ways to do this is to go on a scavenger hunt around your town. Create your own list or download ours, hit the road, and start searching! We love using our Republic phone to take photos of one another while we’re hunting – it makes for some fun memories and great pictures. The best part about a couples scavenger hunt is that you both win!
- Be a tourist in your own town. While taking a trip out of town might be a bit luxurious for some of us this Valentine’s Day, it doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate the sights and sounds of our own cities. Pretend like you have to plan an itinerary for an out-of-town visitor, and then follow that itinerary yourself! What museums, coffee shops, boutiques, and record stores would you be sure to tell them to visit? If you go to the highest viewpoint in your city, whether it’s the top of a building or the top of a hill, what’s the view like, and how is it different from your everyday view? Exploring with fresh eyes and a new outlook can give you a whole new appreciation for your hometown and for your partner.
- Get some fresh air. We know, it’s still bitterly cold across most of the country, but Punxsutawney Phil did see his shadow this year, signaling an early spring, so there’s still hope. Even in the cold weather, bundling up and going on a hike or city walk can breathe fresh air into your soul and into your relationship. Be sure you dress for the weather and bring snacks!
Including the Whole Family
Valentine’s Day isn’t just a day to celebrate romantic love – it’s also a day to celebrate and honor all those around us we love, including our children, extended family, and friends. All of the ideas we have included here are family friendly, and would be a wonderful way to celebrate the holiday with other members of your family or your friends.
Share the Love
How do you plan on celebrating Valentine’s Day this year? We’d love to see your Valentine’s Day stories. Post your Valentine’s Day celebration using the hashtag #RWDateNight and tag us. On February 21, 2019, we’ll randomly pick one winner to receive their next month of cell phone service with Republic for FREE!3 Just think – more savings for another date night!
1 National Retail Federation Valentine’s Day Data Center
2 Monthly Member Pulse Survey with 357 randomly selected Republic Wireless members; conducted by Republic Wireless; February 2019
3 Bill credit is at current plan level, excludes telecom fees