The Perfect Last Minute Date or Romantic Gift

Valentine’s Day is upon us…but what if you forgot? What can you do last minute that salvages the day? Fret not. We have the answers.

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As a writer I’ve had the pleasure of working for many online dating sites and online publications, writing about dating. As such, I’ve learnt a lot about the perfect date. Thankfully, it doesn’t take much. The main thing is to make it personal. So let’s have a look at what you can do to make Valentine’s great last minute.


Let us not forget the day begins with breakfast! If you live with the person you’re dating, this makes it easier for you. All you need to do is wake up fifteen minutes before your date, whip up their favorite cup of beverage (make sure to note beforehand what they prefer drinking — being served a cappuccino when you like it plain black is no hit, nor is coffee if you prefer green tea…) and serve it in bed with a note telling them you love them. If you’re a poet, make it poetic (or find a poem online). If not, a simple “I love you” will suffice.

If you have a flower handy, you can pop it on the tray too. A single red rose is easy enough.

If you have the time you can prepare a full on breakfast — waffles, an omelette, pancakes, heart shaped toast…whatever your date likes (really, it’s about what they like, not what you like…).


There’s nothing like receiving an unexpected gift. It can be a greeting card, it can be a poem, it can be a rose, or something much more elaborate. The trick here is to hire a courier and ship it to them during the day, as it’s something unexpected.

If you want, you can simply courier over the invite to the date in the evening…or the weekend if you’re busy on Valentine’s.

Can’t afford a courier? Send an email with a card. It’s something. And if it’s well written, it can mean the world to them.


Now it’s time to get creative.

There’s the dinner option. If you do go for this, make sure it’s a restaurant your date loves. If s/he loves Thai, you can find a Thai restaurant. If s/he loves the ocean, find an ocean themed restaurant. You get the gist.

Valentine’s means winter in the northern hemisphere. A packed picnic of mulled wine or hot chocolate and fancy sandwiches, taken to an ice skating rink, or sledge riding excursion is playful and easy enough to do.

In the Southern hemisphere, a picnic by the beach, or a lake, in the forest, or a park, a rooftop, or in the back of the truck…can work wonders for romance. Traditional picnic food would include a bottle of wine (at least where it’s legal to drink in public), cheese, cold chicken, baguette, grapes and possibly some pears and potato salad. Things that are easily eaten in the great outdoors. Chocolate for desert.

Raining? Have the picnic at home on a large rug that you toss the blanket over…or why not in bed?!

The home spa is another classic — toss rose petals and some essential oil blend in the bath, serve champagne and offer a massage.

The Gift

Want to buy a gift? The key thing is to make it personal.

If it’s jewelry, make it symbolic of something in your relationship, or something they love. Such as buying something representing their love of the ocean.

If you go for chocolate, or roses, then try to add a personal note. Something that shows your love for them, or why you like them, if it’s a new relationship. And make sure the chocolate is a kind you know they like (i.e. buying raspberry flavored chocolate makes sense if they love raspberries, you don’t have to know their favorite brand, it’s more the idea that you took enough time to figure out what they like!). If you opt for something other than red roses, make it a flower you know they love.

Any other gift — focus on what they love and what has meaning, like a memento for something you’ve experienced together.

Engravings are a great way of saying something too (like engravings on jewelry, watches, etc.), as are dedications (like writing a dedication in a book, or diary).

The main thing to remember is their personality (making it personal) as well as showing your love (making it symbolic, or adding a note of some kind). The same thing goes for dates — you want to show you cared enough to remember what they love. It’s not about making it big, but making it personal.

In Closing

Valentine’s, or any other date, doesn’t have to be a big deal. The main thing is that you show you care. That you show you want to do something special, or give something special, to the one you are dating. 

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