Consumer Watch: Cutting the costs of Valentine's Day

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by Andy Treinen

WHAS11.com

Posted on February 7, 2013 at 5:58 PM

Updated Thursday, Feb 7 at 6:01 PM

(WHAS11) -- Love is not cheap. A new survey finds Americans will spend a whopping $18.6 billion dollars on Valentine's Day gifts this year, and men will spend twice as much as the ladies. But, if Cupid needs to cut some costs this year, there are ways.   To watch Good Morning Kentuckiana’s Andy Treinen and today's Consumer Watch, just click the video player above.

Retailers anticipate Americans will spend more on their sweeties, but they'll be cautious about it. “They want to stay on budget but they still want to find something sentimental and special,” said Kathy Grannis from the National Retail Federation. The National Retail Federation finds shoppers will spend about $131 on Valentine's Day gifts, which is up about $5 from last year.

$1.6 billion will be spent on candy, 1.9 billion on flowers and 4.4 billion on jewelry, but it'll be more budget, than bling. “They might buy silver instead of gold or gem stones instead of diamonds. Jewelry is actually still a very popular Valentine's Day gift and I think we'll see that this year too,” said Grannis.

The nest-dot-com says spending time is more important than spending money. “I think it's really prudent in this economy to not spend a crazy amount of money on Valentine's Day and to just focus on spending it together and having some quality time, says TheNest.com Editor, Heather Morgan Shott. One financially-savvy option for couples, fore go pricey presents and put the money toward a shared goal like a new home or a dream vacation. Just acknowledge the day in a smaller way.

“A sweet card always means so much more than a gift idea,” said Morgan Shott.  Thinking ahead can also save some cash. More time means more options than last-minute chocolates and flowers. What do you say guys? Let’s not blow it this year.

If you have a consumer issue you’d like us to look into send an e-mail to: consumerwatch@whas11.com.

 

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