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Valentine’s Day in the UK: expectations vs. reality

PicodiFebruary 9, 2021

Picodi.com checked the type of gifts British people would like to receive on Valentine’s Day, how much money they are willing to spend and if their gifts suit the taste of their partners.

What do lovers hope to receive on Valentine's Day?

Valentine’s Day is very popular in the UK: 63% of British people surveyed said they celebrate Valentine’s Day and 1% less will give something to their partner. This probably means that for some people spending time together is more important than getting a gift for Valentine’s Day.

What are British people going to buy as a gift? Among the men surveyed, the most popular answers were flowers (39%), jewellery (34%) and teddy bears (25%). Women on the other hand said they are going to buy sweets (42%), perfumes (28%) and dinner at a restaurant (19%).

We also asked what gifts British people expect to get from their significant others and according to women, the most expected gifts were flowers (41%), jewellery (38%), sweets (29%), dinner at a restaurant (24%) and tickets to a cinema or concert (12%). As for men, the most expected option was gift cards (36%), money (21%) and electronics (18%). 13% wouldn’t mind getting dinner at a restaurant and 11% expected cinema or concert tickets.

The worst Valentine’s Day gifts according to women are gift cards (21%), lingerie (19%), cosmetics (17%), small home appliances (13%) and flowers (9%). Among men, a Valentine’s Day card (42%) and flowers (28%) were chosen as the least wanted.

Valentine’s Day in other countries

We also looked into the financial side of Valentine’s Day. On average, we spend £86 on Valentine’s Day gifts in the UK, with men spending 53% more than women (£104 vs. £68).

How much money people are willing to spend on their significant others?

Among the countries researched, the highest amounts are spent in Hong Kong (€102), the United Kingdom (€96), and Ireland (€92).

In 2021 in the UK, the most frequently chosen gifts are flowers (men) and sweets (women). Irish men usually choose jewellery, while women choose sweets. In Germany, men give mostly perfumes on Valentine’s Day and receive handmade gifts from women.

Methodology

This report is based on results of a survey among over 11,000 people from 38 selected countries where Valentine’s Day is celebrated. For currency conversion, we used the average exchange rate for January 2021.

Public Use

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