Valentine’s Day on a creative budget

Why should it break the bank?


Lovers Jessica Rubin and Jacob Stenson taking in the view of the Golden Gate Bridge. “No matter the weather, we stick together.”

Kelly Williams, Staff Writer

What’s Valentine’s Day all about? Some people say it’s a holiday motivated by capitalism, but if you’re a romantic you strive to give your significant other a memorable night out. Valentine’s Day sets the stage to make date night a little bigger and more special, which for some means trying not to break the bank. As much as staying home and relaxing can be enjoyable on Valentines Day, upping your game comes with some brownie points.

Giving your date an exciting and adventurous outing without losing a month’s pay is a lot easier than you think and depending on what model vehicle you drive, with the average cost of $3.14 per gallon, $35 to $70 will get you a full tank. For the Valentine’s Day options below, gas will most likely be the biggest expense for you and your date.

Here are a few amazing options that offer affordable dates to make your evening magical with equally magical savings.

Golden Gate Vista Point is a breathtaking spot where millions of people travel each year just to enjoy the astonishing view. Bring a packable meal with a blanket and lay it in your car or on the ground while watching the sunset go down on the Golden Gate Bridge. To add some elegance, you can bring pillows, music, blankets and candles.

If you want the whole day to sweep your date off their feet, another option is the glorious towering Palace of Fine Arts located 5 minutes away from the Golden Gate. The Palace is 17 acres of beautiful architecture and as you stroll through the grounds, beauty abounds and is sure to mesmerize, keeping you locked in to its wonder.

Take pictures, grab on-site ice cream, feed the ducks or just take in all the Palace has to offer. Bottom line, you could be there for hours and the site provides free entry, meaning you won’t ever need to reach in your pocket to grab more money.

Our last suggestion is within walking distance from of the previous suggested location. Crissy Field offers up some of the most spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the  East Beach are has free parking, as well as a foot washing station.

Kick your shoes off, go seashell hunting, build a sandcastle or just dip your feet in the water for a casual stroll with the one you love. The slogan “long walks on the beach at sunset” could actually be a reality. It may seem cheesy but you’ll be sure to get that Valentine’s Day romantic movie vibe.

Budgeting is a huge part of life and while we want to give our love ones the best, the best sometimes can come with a large price tag. Although value is in the eye of the beholder, affordable dates aren’t as elusive as we sometimes think. It’s your mindset, consideration and your effort that makes the other person feel loved.