You might not be Catholic or even have any idea who this Saint Valentine is, but he must have been a very important man, since everyone is spending hundreds of dollars on flowers, chocolate and dimly lit dinners in celebration of his special day. Or maybe you’re just a sucker for teddy bears and special set menus. Whatever it is, Valentine’s Day is probably the second most expensive day of the year to have dinner out, the first being New Year’s Eve.
If you’re determined to show your date a good time on the 14th of Feb without having to schedule your next date for 6 months later as you struggle to rebuild your savings, you’ll have to be very selective about what you choose to do. Here are some wallet-friendly suggestions.
Book a staycation on third party sites like Agoda
Due to the fact that most local adults live with their parents until marriage, hotel staycations are incredibly popular during Valentine’s Day, and this year will be no exception. This year, 14th Feb 2022 falls on a Monday.
Still, it is possible to arrange for a luxurious night’s stay without spending more than $200 if you never, ever book directly from a hotel.
Third party sites (Agoda is my personal favourite) often offer deep, deep discounts on room rates. At the time of writing, Agoda is offering rooms at Grand Copthorne Waterfront for $210, Studio M Hotel for $212, M Social at $177, and Porcelain Hotel at $99. Prices fluctuate, so start searching now if you haven’t already.
Tip: Use a credit card that’s currently offering discounts on Agoda bookings, such as the DBS Altitude Visa, AMEX Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, Citi Cash Back card, UOB One, and UOB EVOL cards. Compare credit cards here if you don’ t know which one you should use.
Head to a neighbourhood restaurant
If you want to have a romantic restaurant meal in beautiful surroundings, get ready to beg your boss for a cash advance when you get back to work on Tuesday, as Valentine’s Day set menus are insanely expensive. But the ambience at Subway or Seoul Garden won’t exactly have your date feeling amorous.
Instead, head to an intimate restaurant in a quiet neighbourhood where the food is good, the ambience cosy and prices not as inflated. You’ll be sacrificing breathtaking views of the city skyline, but it’s either that or your money. Go during lunchtime to save even more. Here are some recommendations.
- Peperoni Pizzeria – One Farrer Hotel & Greenwood Avenue – Woodfired pizza and other Italian fare. About $30 per person.
- Bruno’s Bistrot – 201 Telok Kurau Road #01-06 – Unpretentious and cosy little restaurant serving up Italian cuisine. Budget $35 to $50 per person.
- Megumi Japanese Restaurant – 443 Joo Chiat Road – About $30 per person
Tip: Use a credit card that offers cash back on restaurant spending, like the Citibank Dividend and the CIMB Visa Signature. Head over to our friendly credit card comparison page to decide which one to use.
Catch a play
Part of what people like about Valentine’s Day is getting to dress up in all their finery, which differentiates it from a normal day schlepping around in FBT or army shorts. You get to do just that at Singapore Repertory Theatre’s NC16 play, “Miss Julie” staged at the KC Arts Centre.
Tickets cost $45 to $70, so if you and your significant other rarely venture further than the neighbourhood hawker centre, this is a chance to do something special together.
Tip: Use DBS PayLah! to get up to $4 off your booking fee. There is no promo code, you’ll have to click to the checkout page to see the automatic fee waiver.
Go on a single’s meetup
If you are single… or got ghosted (we’re sorry but just take it as good riddance!), don’t wallow in self pity. Meet new friends and fellow like-minded singletons at the Valentine Vendetta Casa Amor event on the 14th February 2022, 7pm to 10:30pm at Chimi’s Marina Bay.
This is no dodgy and desperate singles event. In fact, this is the 11th year of the Valentine Vendetta singles meet and it is the longest-running singles event in Singapore. This year, the Valentine Vendetta has formed VTLs (Valentine Travel Lanes) in groups of 5. So, expect to fill up a questionnaire after you’ve secured your tickets so the organisers can find you the right match.
Tip: You have nothing to lose, go with an open mind!
Do you have any other cheap Valentine’s Day ideas? Let us know in the comments!