By Emsie Martin
We all know it is sometimes difficult to make time to spend an evening with your partner or to have us-time together. Apart from not having time, worries about money could also prevent you from celebrating Valentine’s Day. But you can make the day or evening special without breaking the bank.
Matthys Potgieter, a debt counsellor working for DebtSafe, encourages South Africans to enjoy Valentine’s Day but for the right reasons, and to stick to an affordable budget.
Below are a few tips to help you keep your Valentine’s Day affordable and to sidestep all kinds of marketing tricks:
- Start the day by surprising your Valentine with an affordable, home-made breakfast.
- Enjoy a fondue meal at your coffee table. For dessert, melt chocolate and dip marshmallows or strawberries in it.
- Spread a lovely tablecloth on your picnic table in your backyard. Add candles, fancy cheese and chocolate, and voilà – five-star fun in your own backyard!
- Order your favourite takeaway meal but use your best dinner service for the occasion.
- Pack a picnic basket, drive to a lookout point in your area. The two of you can spend the early evening there and watch the sun go down.
- Visit a local market and enjoy the outing and have something to eat and drink.
- Do a hiking trail near you. If you both have to work during the week, postpone it to Saturday.
- Go for a long walk on the beach.
- Be on the lookout for special offers on spa treats for couples, a stay at a smart guesthouse or a dinner for two.
- Get someone to look after the kids for the evening.
- After your partner and you have enjoyed your main course at home, round it off by having a special dessert at your favourite restaurant.
- You don’t have to buy an expensive card; write a letter in your handwriting with a message that comes from your heart– it is really so special.
- A bunch of flowers from your own garden speaks volumes, so why spend money unnecessarily on buying expensive red roses that aren’t going to last?
- Watch a movie in your own TV room.
- Light a fire outside and watch the stars before you go to sleep.
There’s nothing like proper ‘quality time’
It’s time to go back to the heart of how love and appreciation can be shown to others and that is to spend quality time with your beloved. There’s nothing better than being together. Valentine’s Day is no reason to be extravagant with your money because special ideas to suit your pocket abound.
REMEMBER: Love wins, not debt.