The ringgit is shrinking, and we don’t need 2.6 billion reasons to tell us why. If you are short on money but still keen to spend a fun Valentine’s day and night with your significant other without declaring bankruptcy, it’s time to put on your kiamsiap (read: kedekut, thrifty-bordering-onto-stingy) hat and learn how to charm the pants off your partner this Valentine’s Day without even leaving the house.
Here are 7 ways to get into the V-day mood at home without breaking your bank (or relationship):
1. Clean the house
I don’t care who wears the pants in the house, but I’m telling you: if you clean the house each day without being told to, it’ll be Valen-effing-tine Day every day! But just for today, make sure it is thoroughly clean, and that means finally throwing out the tangerine plants (goodbye, CNY) and don’t stinge on the Febreeze!
Cost of hiring a helper to clean the house: RM50 /2 hours (wah, you think Febreeze grows on trees ah?)
Cost of doing it yourself: Free (but do splurge on air freshener)
2. Prep a romantic dinner yourself
“Yes honey, I did it. All. By. Myself. Yep, I didn’t even order a single takeout from the Italian restaurant across the road.” If this sounds like you, kudos! All it takes is ample time (say, 8 hours prep time for kitchen virgins?) and a little creativity (from all those Kemahiran Hidup and Ekonomi Rumah Tangga classes you took throughout high school).
Cost of a romantic (read: overpriced) three-course dinner for two in a restaurant: From RM150 (wah, highway robbery, man!)
Cost of cooking yourself: RM50 or less
3. …And don’t forget dessert!
Dessert can be simple to make. Think about an easy-to-bake brownie or cupcakes that you can prep in a jiffy. But if you don’t own an oven, it’s okay to cheat. You’ll be forgiven if you get her a piece of molten egg yolk croissant she’s been hankering after from the local hipster bakery.
Cost of buying an overpriced Valentine’s Day cake: RM80 or more (that’s like, a week’s worth of groceries for some families)
Cost of baking dessert yourself: RM10 or less
4. Be your own bartender
Forget exorbitantly-priced champagne or alcohol with fancy-sounding names you can hardly pronounce. Buy your own alcohol or beverage of choice and have fun mixing it all up. I personally prefer no-frills beer as the perfect ending to a delicious home-cooked dinner. -burp-
Cost of Dom Perignon: RM600+ (*gasp*!)
Cost of Belgian beer: RM11 from KK Mart
5. Have a campout movie night in the bedroom
Found your old tent and some old sleeping bags? Dust them out, hang some fairy lights and you can now roleplay as campers in your very own star-lit bedroom minus pesky mosquitoes and creepy crawlies! Marshmallows sold separately.
Cost of movie night out: RM50+ including popcorn set
Cost of Netflix and chill: Free! 😉
6. Turn your living room into a dance floor
It doesn’t take a lot to please a music-loving guy or girl. Be it Bieber or Black Sabbath, playing his or her favorite tunes and dancing (head-banging?) to the beat will score you some serious V-Day points. Ear plugs are optional.
Cost of a clubbing night out: Hundredsss of Ringgit
Cost of music/DJ: Free million dollars
7. Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt
Before bae returns home, do take time to scatter little gifts around the house. Lead him or her on with sweet notes while dropping clues about where the next gift will be. This is probably a good time to hide an engagement ring before proposing to her (just don’t forget where you hid it!).
Cost of expensive gift: Too expensive for my taste
Cost of treasure hunt thrill: Priceless!