Valentine’s Day in Romania: what women want and what men really think

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What are the expectations of Romanians towards the holiday of love? What does the perfect Valentine’s Day look like according to women and men? Which gifts are the most expected and which should be avoided? Picodi Analysis Team decided to look into one of the most commercialised holidays in the world and check how much love is still there.

The popularity of this holiday is evident if you look at the number of Romanian people who declare that they celebrate Valentine’s Day — a staggering 74%. Although an overwhelming majority of people prepare a surprise mainly for their significant other, there are some who don’t leave out their friends (3%) or relatives (15%).

An average Romanian person is going to spend 218 RON on a Valentine’s Day gift. Men spend around 50 RON more than women do: 246 RON vs 194 RON.

What’s interesting is that more than half (51%) of Romanians don’t think about Valentine’s Day gifts until February. This is consistent with Picodi’s internal data, according to which we can observe a spike in shopping activity around two weeks before Valentine’s Day. Especially in demand are products such as jewellery or perfumes. 7% of Romanian people leave shopping until the last moment — 13th and 14th of February.

Women’s take on Valentine’s Day

What is it that sparks joy in a woman’s heart on Valentine’s Day – a gift, displays of affection and love or perhaps a promise of commitment? The survey results show that both material and non-material aspects are equally important for almost half of the surveyed women (46%). 31% of women find gifts to be important on Valentine’s Day whereas 23% of respondents would rather spend time with their partner.

Women chose flowers (41%), perfumes (41%), jewellery (35%) clothing (29%) and cosmetics (21%) to be the perfect Valentine’s Day gift whereas plush toy (28%), Valentine’s Day card (27%), sweets (21%), money (17%) and flowers (16%) were deemed as unpopular gift choices. Interestingly, flowers were also voted as the least desirable gift by the surveyed women.

What is the perfect way to spend Valentine’s Day according to women? The survey results don’t give the perfect recipe for a successful Valentine’s Day date, however, among the most popular activities were having a romantic dinner at a restaurant (30%), cinema (23%), trip out of town (19%), cooking dinner together (16%) and movie at home (14%).

It turns out that relaxing doing nothing is a bad idea (34%), same as playing board games (21%) or theatre (10%). Going to a concert turns out to be controversial — some women chose it as a poor way to spend Valentine’s Day, also taking a romantic bath.

Men’s take on Valentine’s Day

The answers of the surveyed men show that pleasing them can be more difficult than pleasing women. 36% of men expect a material gift from their partner, 34% does not want any gifts but they would like to spend time together with their significant other and 30% declares that they would like to get both.

The most desired gifts:

  • Valentine’s Day card (29%)
  • Electronic devices (24%)
  • Perfumes (20%)
  • Plush toy (14%)
  • Underwear (9%)

The least desired gifts:

  • Valentine’s Day card (22%)
  • Plush toy (17%)
  • Gift voucher (13%)
  • Sweets (12%)
  • Clothing (11%)

Valentine’s Day cards and plush toys seem to have stirred quite a controversy among men since they voted those items as both the most and least desirable gifts.

What does the perfect Valentine’s Day look for men? In this case, they partially agree with the fairer sex: men would like to go to the cinema or a restaurant, take a romantic bath, make love or cook dinner together. The list of unfortunate Valentine’s Day dates among men looks similar to the one compiled by women.

On average Romanian people spend 218 RON on gifts (around €46), which places them almost at the end of the ranking. They spend less than Germans (€67) and Cech people(€68) but more than Hungarians (€43).

People don’t splurge on gifts in India ($35), Belarus ($34) and the Philippines ($33).

This report is based on results of a survey conducted in the second half of January 2019 among 6400 people from 38 countries where Valentine’s Day is celebrated. For currency conversion, we used the average exchange rate for January 2019.

For the Romanian version click here.

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