It doesn’t matter if you’re spending P500 or P5,000 this Valentine’s Day. Bottomline, you have plans and you’re paying.
Just like Halloween, Valentine’s Day is rooted from pagan traditions. Long before it became a commercial affair in the mid-1800s, the lovers’ holiday is dark, gnarly, and full of animal sacrifices.
Valentine’s Day—is it good for the economy?
People in the U.S. are expected to spend $19.6 billion on Valentine’s Day this year. According to economists, this type of “discretionary spending” is a strong indication that the economy is moving in the right direction. “If you treat yourself to something on next Thursday, just a random day of the year, there’s an issue of whether it becomes a routine,” says Dan Ariely, a behavioral economics professor at Duke University. “But if you splurge only on Valentine’s Day, your spending is more confined.”
I don’t know if it’s just me but being in a long-term relationship made me realize that you don’t need to splurge to enjoy this holiday. Discretionary spending is a result of herd mentality—which means going out and buying chocolates, flowers, and cards are all part of a normative behavior. I wish I can say the same for those in the ‘honeymoon phase,’ but stay in a relationship long enough and you’ll start seeing past the teddy bears and half-dead flowers.
So, is it good for the economy? For big retail companies, yes; for our bank accounts, no.
Going on a fancy date is not a requirement
Thanks to rom-coms, commercials, and social media, the image of a “perfect date” has become objective. Again, there are a bazillion ways to enjoy the company of your loved one that doesn’t include a fancy restaurant or a spontaneous trip to the Maldives. We wrote an article on how you can spend Valentine’s with only P500. You can read it here.
As for single people, you’re not off the spending train just yet. According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), more than a quarter of consumers who are not planning a romantic evening have an alternative in mind: shopping or getting together with friends and family instead. To each their own, we say.
To all the couples who plan on saving more this year, good on you. If you’re invested in long-term relationships, you should know that after the love comes marriage and starting a family—which is a whole lot more expensive.
Header courtesy of Unsplash
Writer: BEA LLAGAS