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This V-Day, go all out by staying in – and under budget.

By Dillon Wallace

Somewhere down the road romance became synonymous with getting away. Fancy dinners. Exotic beaches. All-inclusive resorts. Foreign countries. Snow covered cabins. Clearly whoever came up with these ideas treated money like toilet paper, free flowing.


But who said you have to travel far for a romantic getaway? So before you get all decked out for an impractical and super expensive Valentine’s Day date or weekend, consider a staycation! Need a little inspiration? No problem. We’ll play your wingman better than Goose to Maverick, so move over Cupid because we’ve got this V-Day covered.


Blanket fort, pizza & a movie marathon

No matter how old you get, there’s something liberating in channeling your inner kid. So tap into your childhood sleepover days and recreate that fun setting for you and your valentine. Order your favorite local pizza (or bake one at home), use up all the pillows and blankets in the house (bedsheets work wonders, FYI), light the fire place, crack open a bottle of red and pick out a few classic rom-coms to top off the perfect date night. The sparks from the fire won’t be the only thing that’s flying on this hot date.


Play tourist in your own city

Give that vacation vibe a local feel by venturing to new places in your town or trying restaurants you’ve never been to before. You don’t have to be Columbus to discover a new world, there’s plenty to explore right in your own backyard. Make it an adventure, together.


Get crafty

They always say it’s the thought that counts – and they weren’t wrong. Chocolates and jewelry are fallbacks – like getting a gift card for Christmas. You’re not really upset about it but you know little effort went into it. So blow your valentine off his or her feet by getting creative, literally. Put your craft skills to the test by building or making something – you can even do it together. Need some ideas? A picture collage of your relationship highlights, your own at-home wine and paint night, a handmade picture frame, a poster of all the movie and concert stubs you’ve attended together, or … how about a jewelry hanger for all those past

Valentine’s Day gifts?


Home spa

Why pay a stranger hundreds of dollars to give you an awkward massage and facial when you can play masseuse and treat your valentine with your own couples spa day? Dim the lights, throw on some Enya (just kidding … or not), light some candles, grab some oils and make the day all about pampering each other. If you want to throw in some hand-fed fruit, then by all means you do you, boo.


Cozy up to a good book

Couples watch movies together. All. The Time. Why not take it one step further and read the same book together. Throw together a solid cheese and fruit plate, uncork that bottle of cab and throw on a warm blanket as you let your imaginations soar together.


Game night

Looking to add a some heat to your date? Nothing stirs up some good passion like a little competition. Whether it’s just the two of you playing cards or a group of couples playing charades, you’ll be laughing and enjoying each other’s company more than ever. There’s also a couple other good uses of Twister if you haven’t tried them … just saying.



Wait, what?! Yeah, we know. Feng Shui-ing your home sounds more like work than a quality date, but hear us out. Remember when you first moved in together? Decorating your home was a joint effort where you both came together to begin creating a life as one. Redecorating can help freshen things up a bit. Let a little more light in, add some new décor, get rid of some clutter – whatever. Think of it more as spring cleaning for your heart. Out with the old, in with the love.


Plan a real vacation

This may seem counterintuitive to the list – after all this is a list about how you don’t need a fancy vacation to be romantic. But, planning that much needed actual getaway may be just the staycation idea you’ve been looking for. Set aside a date night to cook a good home dinner, drink a little vino and look into all those places you’ve been meaning to research. Check out deal sites like Groupon or Social Living for packaged deals to help alleviate the burden of setting up all the fine details (i.e. transportation). We promise you’ll both be exercising those romantic feelings when you’ve got a 10-day summer trip to Rome and Barcelona on your calendar.

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