Which budget gesture should you make this Valentine’s?


Grand gestures of love – engraved Swarovski jewellery, a breath-taking helicopter ride over the city at sunset, an elaborate flash mob routine – all sound wonderful, but since when did love become such an enormous pressure on you and your wallet? What about those of us who have a heart brimming with love but can barely afford a Sainsbury’s meal deal? Well, here are a few gestures that folks of different relationship statuses can make this Valentine’s or Palentine’s Day (hooray for mates!) without the luxury of money or a mob.

For your mega crush or love…

A public proclamation… during lectures

This is risky, very risky. But if you pull this off, you’ll become a campus hero for three days, be featured in The Tab, and a video will almost certainly go viral on Facebook. Hopefully for the right reasons. Whether you have a simple message to give, or you’re serenading your sweetheart with a guitar, you’re doing it in front of hundreds of other students – so mad props to you regardless. Just be sure the lecturer isn’t going to furiously kick you out of the class and report you (let’s hope they’re also happily in love and find your gesture charismatic and adorable).

For your double date or group of mates…

Invite everyone to get competitive at the arcade

OK, so arcade games aren’t completely free, but with a group of you, they’re (almost priceless) fun. Not afraid to get sweaty? Make sure you head over to Dance Dance Revolution to dance your socks off. Love gunning down zombies in an infected hospital? You can probably do that too. I’m feeling the romantic thrill already.

For your full-time gf or bf…

Make a scrapbook

This is a classic budget option for those in longer-established relationships. Use any leftover printing credits (or secretly use your housemate’s old printer they lugged to uni from home) to print out some cute photos of you two together. The fun is in what you do with the photos! For example, loop a string through them in chronological order as a timeline of your relationship, or add handwritten captions, then hang the finished book up in their bedroom as a surprise.

For your best friend…

Host your own spa night for the two of you

Now, this is a stellar idea – literally just go on a kitchen raid for ingredients. Because of this very Pinterest-popular idea, DIY face masks are much easier to make (and cheaper!) than actually going out and buying one. Guy or girl, everybody secretly enjoys a pampering session; ridiculous selfies are also compulsory.


Pen a handwritten letter

I know, I know, cheesy… but not if it’s happening to you, right (admit it). Lover or friend, receiving a letter is incredibly heart-warming. And if you’re the one writing, you’ll find you give your words much more care and thought, which is a lovely surprise (for both parties, honestly).

What are your plans this Valentine’s (or Palentine’s) Day? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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