Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and America’s sweethearts are expected to spend $25.9 billion on the holiday this year, and a new report on 2023’s Best Places for Valentine’s Day offers where the best place to spend it is.

It also released its nationally representative 2023 Valentine’s Day Spending Survey, which found that more than 1 in 4 of Americans expect their Valentine to not spend any money on gifts this year.

To determine the most romantic yet affordable cities for celebrating the Day of Hearts, WalletHub compared 100 of the largest U.S. cities across 26 key metrics, ranging from florists per capita to forecasted precipitation to the cost of a three-course meal for two.

*Cost data adjusted for the median household income of the city.

Valentine’s Day Spending Survey – Key Stats

  • Some People Anticipate Smaller Gifts. 23% of Americans expect their significant other to spend less on Valentine’s Day this year.
  • Dinner May Be Too Expensive. 36% of people say that going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day is a bad deal.
  • V-Day Debt Is Worth It for Some People. Almost 1 in 5 Americans think a Valentine’s Day gift is worth going into credit card debt.
  • Financial Infidelity Hurts. Over half (55%) of Americans feel that financial infidelity can be worse than cheating.
  • Bad Credit Might Keep You Single. Around half of Americans would not marry someone with a bad WalletScore or bad credit.
  • Reckless Spending Leads to Breakups. Half of Americans would break up with their significant other if they spent money irresponsibly.
  • Paid Dating Apps Are Undesirable. 82% of Americans say paying for dating apps is not worth it in 2023.
  • Bad Spending Habits Stink. More than half of Americans say that irresponsible spending is a bigger turnoff than bad breath.

Valentine’s Day Facts

  • $25.9 Billion: Total Valentine’s Day spending projected for 2023 ($192.80 per person celebrating).
  • 2X: Men will spend almost twice as much as women, on average, for Valentine’s Day 2023.
  • $9.9 Billion: Amount Americans will spend on jewelry ($5.5B) and a special evening out ($4.4B).
  • 25%: Share of marriages that begin online.
  • 33%: Overall online dating activity increased across the U.S. between February 1 and February 14.
  • $28.3 Billion: Projected global dating services market size by 2027.

Credit Scores and Financial Literacy

“People want to date people who are financially responsible, especially as high inflation continues to put stress on many Americans’ wallets. Half of Americans would break up with their significant other if they spent irresponsibly,” said WalletHub Analyst Jill Gonzalez. “If you’re looking to settle down, it’s a good idea to make sure you have a decent credit score, as over 47% of people would not marry someone with bad credit. Bad credit can cause someone to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars over their lifetime, so that statistic is unsurprising. Thankfully, people with bad credit can improve their credit score over time if they stick to a budget and practice responsible credit use.”

Men and Valentine’s Day Credit Card Debt

“Men are nearly 45% more likely than women to think that a Valentine’s Day gift is worth going into credit card debt, according to WalletHub’s new Valentine’s Day Spending Survey. Some reasons for this discrepancy likely include societal expectations for dating and historical gender roles. Even if we can explain this statistic, though, that doesn’t mean it’s a good thing. Buying a gift is never worth going into debt, especially during this period of high inflation. Luckily, 23% of Americans are already expecting their partners to spend less this year, so there’s less pressure to break the bank,” Gonzalez said. “People who can’t afford to spend much this Valentine’s Day can consider alternative gifts. For example, a handmade gift can often hold a lot more meaning than an expensive object.”

How singles can get their finances relationship-ready

“Some of the biggest turnoffs when it comes to romantic partners are bad credit and irresponsible spending. Both can reflect negatively on a person’s future earnings and how they might behave in other areas of life. Single people who have a problem with overspending or who have bad credit might want to work on improving their financial situation before trying to date,” Gonzalez said. “Some of the best first steps to take include increasing the amount of money you save or use to pay off debts, making fewer non-essential purchases, and sticking to a budget. You should also monitor your credit score and credit report regularly, as well as look for ways to boost your income. Taking time to improve your finances may lead to better romantic prospects.”

Source: WalletHub