Your Ultimate Valentine's Day Guide: Whether You’re Single or Taken

February 14, also known as Valentine's Day, is coming up quickly. It's a time when many consider how to celebrate this day of love successfully. Whether you are single or with someone, our guide is here to give you the best tips for making Valentine's Day 2024 special. Don't have a partner yet? Don’t worry—we've compiled all the important tips and information you'll need so you won't have to spend the day alone.

If you do have a partner, getting things ready early can make a big difference. We can help you avoid frantic, last-minute choices by offering suggestions for the perfect date and a gift that will make your partner adore you. While expressing love regularly is vital, Valentine's Day offers a unique opportunity to show how much you care. Have you ever thought about why we celebrate it, though?

Vday Article What's In & Out

Valentine's Day: A Brief History

The exact date of the coinage of Valentine’s Day is still uncertain. Some historians say that this day was rooted in the early Romans’ celebration of Lupercalia—where men hit women with sheepskin in the belief that they will become healthy and fertile.

The most popular belief of the day’s origin is that of Pope Gelasius’ declaration of St. Valentine’s Day after two men, who were both named Valentine, were executed for martyrdom. How St. Valentine became affiliated with a love-focused holiday was because he performed weddings for soldiers forbidden to marry – and he wore a ring with a Cupid on it—a symbol of love—that helped soldiers recognize him. He also handed out paper hearts to remind Christians of their love for God.

Either way, it seems like Valentine’s Day was ingrained from forbidden love, dark rituals and bloodbath. But the idea behind it changed after Shakespeare and other writers romanticized the word ‘Valentine.’ They used ‘Valentine’ for romantic confessions in their poems and writings. And just like any other thing that gets romanticized, everyone would follow the same thinking (bandwagon syndrome, but who’s complaining?).

As of today, Valentine’s Day is widely celebrated all over the world as a day of expressing love in a more extravagant and effortful way. Did you know that the average consumer spends $130.21 on this day alone?!

But of course, due to post-modernism, this day is no longer just for couples in love! Valentine’s Day has also become a day of declaration for self-love and appreciation. More and more people celebrate Valentine’s Day with family, friends, and even pets! Fun fact, in the US alone, researchers claim that an average of $886 million was spent on Valentine’s Day gifts for pets in the year 2016. My, how far society has grown and changed. But of course, most singles would still prefer to spend the day with a date, so how can you even get one ASAP?

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Valentine’s Day Trends and Statistics 2024

As Covid-19 took over the world in 2020, many lovers found themselves spending more for Valentine’s Day gifts than ever before – over $27 billion overall spent on this marketed holiday.

  • 56% went to buy and send sweet items (literally candy and chocolates) in mostly heart-shaped boxes with the hopes of sending love in the trying times of being far away from each other.
  • Another popular gift was greeting cards & flowers – nearly taking up 40% of gift items purchased and given. Even when prices skyrocket for flowers during this day, it still has not gotten out of style and makes every woman giddy.

But come 2022, where everything is starting to get back to normal – most couples are now more comfortable going out on a dinner date or a day out experiencing new things. In fact, 41% say that they would love to receive a “gift of experience” compared to 36% last year.

With fewer restrictions on going out, couples celebrating Valentine’s Day are planning for more extravagant ways to celebrate their love. Maybe being cooped up for a year filled up couples’ banks and adrenaline to try something new. So this year, it is estimated that Americans will spend $23.9 billion just for this day. It may be below last year’s spending but again, couples are spending more on experiences than delivered gifts.

New and Old Trends This Valentine's Day

  • Gift Giving – Gifts never went out of style. Whether it's given personally or delivered to each other's doorstep, many couples still feel the rush and butterflies when buying and receiving gifts. Of course, the most popular Valentine's Day gifts are still flowers, chocolates, and jewelry.
  • Dinner Dates / Holiday Dates – As social restrictions are easing up, many couples are planning for romantic evenings or getaways. 
  • Virtual Dates – Some couples who won't be able to see one another during Valentine's Day are planning for virtual celebrations. There are many ways you can spice up your virtual dates – from watching a movie together to cooking dinner at the same time!
  • Galentines – For singles who do not have or prefer not to have a date, an ongoing trend for celebrating the day of Love is spending it out in the town or making homemade cocktails indoors with their girlfriends – talking about dating, boys, or any empowering topic.
  • Me Time – Many people are starting to celebrate Valentine's Day by showing love and kindness to themselves. Self-love is more and more practiced these days, and many are vocal about how they show self-love. It's no longer considered "sad" when women go to the movies alone or have dinner in a restaurant by themselves – in fact, society sees this now as empowering.

How to Get a Date on Valentine’s Day

Getting a date for Valentine’s Day doesn’t need to be hard. (Yes, even in today's time when a pandemic is still looming over us.) Right here, we’ve laid out tips on how and where you can find a date a week (or more), a day before, and even right on Valentine’s Day!

A week or more before Valentine’s Day

In this case, you still have plenty of time to find a date before the special day. You can try any or all of these activities:

1. Sign up on dating sites that host physical and virtual events — lots of Dating Sites such as Badoo host virtual and physical events in different neighbourhoods, which you can attend and have fun in. Most of these sites offer sweet discounts!

2. Go to bars and parties — make sure you look and feel good before you head out. Get your game on as you and your friends dance the night away. Somewhere out the dance floor, there is at least one single person who’s also scouting for a date.

Valentine's Day Online Dating

3. Host a "Bring A Friend" party for singles — host a party where all of your attendees need to bring at least one single friend. Not only are you finding a partner for yourself, but you're also helping other singles by playing matchmaker.

4. Attend community events — if your town has a circular or a website, you can check if there are upcoming community events–whether physical or virtual meetups. Not only do you become more involved with your community, but you might also even score yourself a date!

A day before Valentine’s Day

It’s not too late to find a date on Valentine’s Day even if you have more or less than 24 hours to find one!

1. Let a friend set you up — for sure, at least one of your friends knows someone who's also single! If a friend offers to set you up, there's really no harm in saying yes. If none of your friends offer, be proactive and ask them if they have single friends you can meet! 

2. Sign up on chat dating apps chat apps are the quickest ways to make a connection with other singles. Strike up a conversation, and if you spark a connection, go ahead and ask the person out!

3. Sign up on reliable dating sites — you’ll never know who you’ll meet on reputable  matchmaker dating sites such as Elite Singles. Or, try SilverSingles if you're over 50 seeking new love. You can find the perfect date on these dating sites, especially if you have serious intentions.

Or, if you already have an account, update it with new pictures and profile headlines such as "Looking for my Valentine" this would surely get you noticed.

On Valentine’s Day

Maybe you are feeling out of place that you’re the only one who doesn’t have a date? Or maybe you’re just feeling extra lonely tonight and can use some company? Don’t worry, you’re not the only person who feels that way.

1. Attend a speed dating event — a lot of dating sites and even restaurants host speed dating events on this day. All you have to do is search Google for one that is near you. Speed dating events are a great way to meet new people.

2. Sign up on casual dating sites — it may be hard to find a date outside the comforts of your home on the day of Valentine’s Day, as almost all establishments are packed with couples. However, you don’t need to spend this day alone! You can sign up on Casual Dating sites such as AdultFriendFinder and RedHotPie, and see what encounters await you there.

 After scoring a date, the next thing to do is to actually plan the date. Out of ideas? Read on.

Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

If you’re drawing a blank to what to do with your partner or the person you’ve just asked out on Valentine’s day, fret not! We have listed fun and inexpensive activities that will surely give you and your date a wonderful time together.

If it's your first date with that person, you might want to try these exciting date ideas that do not show too much effort, which could scare your date away, or too unconcerned that it would come off that you didn't really think about how to spend the day. These ideas are just right for the first date.

5 First Date Ideas

Valentine's Day Date Ice Skating

1. Have a picnic at the park — picnics are a classic, but definitely not overrated! You can prepare a sweet snack with a good bottle of wine, and get to know your date with the background noise of hummingbirds. Nice, isn’t it?

2. Go to an amusement park — amusement parks bring out the kid in anyone. It gives a sense of nostalgia and isn’t it just nice to feel young again?

3. Be a tourist in your own city —you can visit all the tourist spots in your place and pretend that it’s your first time seeing them. This can be most enjoyable especially if your date comes from another state, or better yet, another country!

4. Have a friendly competition at an indoor rock climbing center — a healthy competition never hurt anyone, plus, indoor rock climbing is a great way to have fun! Ask your date if it’s his or her first time doing the activity. If it’s a yes, and it’s not your first time, then you can teach him or her some tricks! If it’s both your first time, for sure you have a nice time trying something new.

5. Watch live music — if you’re both music fans, why not catch an up and coming band playing at a nearby pub? Music brings people together, and you’ll definitely have a good time. Watching live music on a first date can also be good for introverts who are not really excited to talk about themselves on a first date.

If you've been in a relationship for quite some time now, here are seven unique ideas that can spice up the excitement of your relationship.

7 Unique Date Ideas for Happy Couples

1. Spend the whole day in — for the entire day, keep the curtains closed from morning until night. Stay in bed in your favorite pajamas and be the epitome of Netflix and chill. Order take out from your favorite comfort food place, and have fun with dessert (if you know what I mean) ;)

2. Recreate your first date — if you and your partner have been dating for quite some time now, it would be fun to recreate your first date even up to the clothes you wore that day (if you still have them of course).

3. Have a baking session — it doesn’t matter if both of you don’t know how to bake. That would even make it more fun. Just get on the Internet and find an easy recipe to follow. The baking process would surely be enjoyable, and you’ll even have a treat afterward (if you duly follow the recipe!).

Valentine's Day Date Idea Netflix And Chill

4. Go for a hike and camp under the moonlight — this can be so romantic if you and your partner are both adventurous. Nature camping under the moonlight, with no cellular reception, does not only connect you deeper to the beautiful sceneries of the Earth, but to each other as well.

5. Pretend to be royalty for a night —if you have some cash to blow, this could be a good idea. You can start the day at a salon and barbershop to get a good grooming session, have dinner at an overpriced restaurant, let loose at an upscale club, and end the night at a fast food joint because let’s be honest, we are not Miley Cyrus to avoid that lifestyle!

6. Go for a drive without a destination — if you’re both game for something random, why not go for a drive without knowing where to go next. Just keep on driving until you find the perfect place to explore and spend the night. Don’t forget the music!

7. Ready to up your relationship level? Adopt a dog from the nearby shelter — getting a dog is a sign of a leveled up relationship. If you’re both ready, responsible, and are well, heading that way anyway, adopting a dog could be a good sign of commitment.

Now that you have a general idea about the date you'll plan, the next thing on the list is gifts. If it is your first date, gifts are optional. But when you have been in a committed relationship for quite some time now, your partner would surely expect a gift.

Valentine's Day Ideas During COVID


Maybe you're in quarantine or you're still uncomfortable going out due to COVID-19 pandemic – no fret. You can still celebrate Valentine's Day with your partner or even find a date if you don't have one yet! The past year, everyone around the world has experienced restrictions on dating activities – mandatory social distancing, stay-at-home and work-from-home orders, restaurants and bars closing down, etc etc. This led to conflicts of meeting new people, exploring romance and elevating current relationships. However, even with a pandemic still looming above our heads, there are still ways you can feel and spread the love this Valentine's Day whether you're single or in a relationship!

#1 Make reservations in a fancy restaurant – More and more restaurants are opening up and catering to a minimum capacity. If you want to get on a fancy date with your special someone, it's best to secure your slots and make reservations as soon as possible. All restaurants have a mandatory protocol of sanitizing and social distancing – so if you're vaccinated and up for a little risk, having a dinner date may be a good idea.

#2 Cook together at home – Skip the takeout and get your aprons ready because nothing is more romantic than cooking together in the kitchen. Bonus points if both you and your partner are just average cooks – see if you can make a great meal together. And for dessert – you can spice it up and try "it" out on the kitchen counter. ;)

#3 Have virtual meets – Single? There are many dating sites and dating apps where you can chat (text or video) with members who are also looking for some company during Valentine's Day. It doesn't have to be a date, per se, it could be a random hang with new friends too! 

#4 Video chats never went out of season – Spending the day in quarantine or away from your boo? Thanks to instant messaging platforms, you can set video chat dates with your partner this Valentine's Day. To make it more special than your usual video calls, you can eat at the same time or even watch a movie together. There are many in-app features video conferencing and instant messaging tools now offer their users.

#5 Send gifts to your partner – Gifts never went out of style. Even if you're far away from your partner, sending one will surely make them flustered and feel the love even from miles away! Scroll down and see our Valentine's Day gift ideas.

Valentine’s Day Gifts

Gifts can be a bit tricky because sometimes you can't think of anything special that your partner doesn't have yet. Especially when you're out of time to order a personalized gift. You tend to turn to overpriced flower bouquets and boxes of chocolates with Valentine's Day cards with a big "Happy Valentine's Day" together with cheesy Valentine's Day Quotes! 

But here we've compiled a shortlist of thoughtful gifts you can give to your partner.

Gifts for Men:

  • Tickets to something that he likes — your guy a fan of sports? Get him two tickets to watch a live game (with you of course).
  • Something rare related to his hobby —whatever the hobby of your man is, there is one thing that he definitely wants but wouldn’t really buy himself. Or, maybe you can get him a limited edition of something related to his hobby. A rare find would surely blow his mind off!
  • DIY Coupons — your guy would surely appreciate a set of handmade coupons that entitles him to certain perks and activities with you. You can think outside the box and be creative as much as you want.

Gifts for Women:

  • Calming soaking salts — any girl appreciates something that can help her relax after a long day at work. Trust us, she will look forward to the day she gets to enjoy a nice bath, and you might be invited to join!
  • Silk pajamas —there is nothing more comfortable and sexier than sleeping in silk pajamas.
  • Framed calligraphy from your wedding vow — if you’re married, giving your wife a framed calligraphy of the words from your wedding vows would surely send tears to her eyes! Every time she sees this, she will be reminded of one of the happiest days of her life.

5 Ideas How to Enjoy Valentine’s Day As A Single

If you choose to celebrate this day without getting a date, that's more than fine. Here are suggestions on what you can do on the official day of love:

1. Host an “Independence” dinner. Invite all your single friends to a dinner party hosted by you and toast to your success and independence!

2. People-watch at your favorite bar. Stay off of social media and grab a seat at the counter of your favorite bar. Order your favorite drink and just observe all the live social interactions happening around you. For sure, you will have a fun time. A bonus, someone may just approach you!

Valentine's Day Singles

3. Book a weekend getaway for one. If you’re dreading to see all the posts on social media about romantic confessions, then you can keep your head far from it. Book a getaway for the weekend and spend Valentine’s Day preparing your itinerary and outfits for that trip! You never know, you might just meet the right person on your while on vacation!

4. Stay in and pamper yourself. Give your body the all-star treatment starting with a pamper session at your salon. Get a new haircut or a new hair color. After, have a photoshoot with your other single friends and create your online dating profile! Cap the night with a long, candlelit bubble bath with a glass of your favorite wine on the side.

5. Just an ordinary day. The easiest way to enjoy Valentine’s is to just keep up with your daily routine. At the end of the day, February 14 is really just a normal day… for some. :) Author Chris Pleines
Chris Pleines
Founder of Dating Scout and Author of the book "Online Dating for Dummies"
Chris founded Dating Scout 15 years ago, and today he is one of the leading Online Dating Experts. He is the author of the book "Online Dating for Dummies" and the author of the Internet's largest online dating study analyzing 20 Million Profile Pictures with artificial intelligence. Chris Pleines holds a master degree in media science and appeared in numerous television interviews and publications to give expert advice as well as tips about online dating.