In Dubai, Love shouldn't cost a thing: ways to remain budget-friendly this Valentine's

In Dubai, Love shouldn't cost a thing: ways to remain budget-friendly this Valentine's
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Published February 12th, 2015 - 21:57 GMT via SyndiGate.info

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A night out on the town can easily drain one’s wallet, with fine dining options on Valentine’s Day costing upwards of Dh1,500 per couple in Dubai.
A night out on the town can easily drain one’s wallet, with fine dining options on Valentine’s Day costing upwards of Dh1,500 per couple in Dubai.
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Whether you love it or loathe it, there’s no escaping the 14th of February. Valentine’s Day is one of those holidays of the year when the household budget of loved up couples takes the backseat.

According to the National Federation’s Valentine’s Day Consumer Spending survey in the US, each person celebrating the day of hearts will spend more this year than they did in 2014. The average per person spend is expected to reach $142.31 (Dh522), up from $133.91 in 2014. Total consumer spending for Valentine’s Day is forecast to reach $18.9 billion.

Personal finance experts, however, said one doesn’t have to break the bank to please a loved one, even in places like Dubai where lavish dining and gift options can tempt the most budget-conscious consumer.

“You can have a great Valentine’s Day with your loved one in UAE. Just avoid traffic, arguments and malls. How about a nice picnic or a lazy day at the beach?” Preeti Bhambri, managing director of MoneyCamel.com suggests.

Bhambri has come up with a list of money-saving options couples can try this weekend.

Theatre Date

If watching a stage play is your ideal romantic evening, take your significant other to Madinat Theatre on Jumeirah Beach Road and enjoy once again the most romantic story ever told. The play Romeo and Juliet is on from 11th to 14th February, with ticket prices ranging from Dh150 to Dh250.

Dance lessons

Tired of sitting on the couch on weekends? Shake off those idle limbs while you and your partner dance to the music. “You could do something a little non-traditional and take a dancing class together. It will be fun and romantic at the same time,” suggests Bhambri. Valid until 14th February, the Dance for You Studio is giving couples a chance to learn some new steps at 10 per cent off the regular price.

Meal for two at home

A night out on the town can easily drain one’s wallet, with fine dining options on Valentine’s Day costing upwards of Dh1,500 per couple in Dubai. Bhambri says your bank account will be happier if you skip an elaborate restaurant lunch or dinner this year. Cook your wife’s favourite meal, dress up the table and light a candle. If the budget permits, throw in some flowers. “Opt for a cosy meal for two at home. You can cook a simple yet thoughtful meal for your lady. This is guaranteed to win you a lot of brownie points.”

Dine at a discount

Should you wish to enjoy dinner outside, the Radisson Blu Hotel in Deira Creek offers a 25 per cent discount on Valentine’s Gala Dinner Buffet. At Toko Dubai, you can bring home a complimentary sweets gift bag worth D200 when you pay with your Emirates NBD card. If you prefer Indian cuisine, the La Porte des Indes Restaurant at The Address Dubai Mall offers diners a 20 per cent discount if they pay with an FGB credit card.

Enjoy an inexpensive date

If you want to enjoy some quality time with your wife outside your home, there are plenty of budget-saving options out there. “You could go bowling, ice-skating or even go-karting together. Spend some proverbial quality time with each other. That’s really the point of it all,” says Bhambri.

At Al-Nasr Leisureland, go karts can cost Dh30 on weekends for five minutes, while bowling can cost as little as Dh15 per game.

Go out of town

Since Valentine’s Day falls on a weekend, you can spend a day outside the city. There’s no need to spend the weekend at a five-star resort, though. Neighboring towns like Al Ain, Ras Al Khaimah or even Abu Dhabi have some outdoor spots to visit or hang out at. “You could go for a long drive leaving the hustle and bustle of the city behind. You can drive to Ras Al Khaimah or Jebel Hafeet with a picnic basket, with your favourite songs playing in the car. Sounds like the perfect date, right?” says Bhambri.

Flowers

Who doesn’t like flowers on Valentine’s Day? Prices of a bouquet of roses usually go up on Valentine’s Day, but buying one doesn’t have to be a thorny affair. At Jenny Flowers, you can get a 10 per cent discount on the total bill if you pay with your FGB credit card or Emirates NBD card.

Chocolates

Another Valentine’s Day favourite, a box of mouth-watering chocolates can be heavy on the wallet. At Chocola, you can get 15 per cent discount on the total bill using your FGB credit card. For Emirates NBD cardholders, a 15 per cent discount awaits shoppers at Ti Amo Chocolates.

Jewellery

Anything that glitters can easily please a loved one. If you intend to surprise your better half with a piece of jewellery this weekend, get them at a discount. It’s going to be a bit pricey than a dinner at home, though. At Liali Jewellery, FGB credit card holders can buy a Valentine Heart pendant with chain for only Dh650 instead of Dh799. Bait Al Arab Jewellery is offering a 15 per cent discount or a free diamond solitaire pendant worth Dh2,000 when you buy a diamond jewellery set for Dh4,000.

 

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