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Valentine Gifts and Gift Ideas: Valentine’s Day: A true holiday or a day to stimulate the economy?

Tiffany Drinnen

Valentine’s Day holds a different meaning to different people. This holiday is said to have both Christian and Roman traditions tied to it and there are a few different legends that surround Saint Valentine and why this holiday was celebrated in the first place. Presently, there are some people who don’t believe in or understand only professing your love on one day a year, other people count down the days until the holiday arrives and consider it a big part or their year, and then there are those who completely despise this day and refuse to celebrate in any way. For some, this day is ironically the day they want to forget about love all together. In fact, the movie Valentine’s Day covers a story from each of those perspectives. It even illustrates the Anti-Valentine movement where sometimes there is even a celebration that has become increasingly popular throughout the years.

A lot of the cynicism surrounding Valentine’s Day comes from the costs associated with a day some have quipped a “Hallmark Holiday.” There are national consumer surveys that show how much money the average American spends on Valentine’s Day and what they actually spend that money on. Although the economy has seen its worst, it seems that the past few years have been quite stable for the Valentine’s Day market. It has been estimated that floral companies make up to 40% of their annual revenue during the month of February. So there is some validity in this holiday being what some consider a commercial holiday. Although having the term “Hallmark Holiday” defined by Wikipedia may help give it some sort of legitimacy, companies like Hallmark simply can’t make up a holiday just to promote a product for, unless the demand came first. They simply produce products that fit a holiday where there is a need, like Valentine’s Day. On the other hand of the argument lies that fact that these items or other things that are purchased particularly for this holiday will most likely be purchased any way, at any given time. Maybe it’s the inspiration of the holiday that helps nudge someone to get their significant other that piece of jewelry they want or a an upgraded meal at a nice restaurant. Whether Valentine’s Day is truly a holiday that people want to convey their love through gift giving, then so be it. But whether this day is commercialized to the point where people feel almost obligated to participate is really up to the consumer. This can also be argued by whether a person is single or involved with another person when this day arrives and where they choose to categorize this holiday, a day specifically to celebrate love or a day that certain simply stimulates the economy.


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