Thrifty Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

by Kim Merrikin, Seattle Goodwill
February 12, 2016

Last year for Valentine’s Day we put together a number of Valentine’s Day date ideas that were budget-friendly and focused on spending time with your loved one(s). Many of the items that can make these date ideas a success can be found at any one of our 24 stores! To make your life, and date idea hunting easier, we compiled them all into one spot:

As Seattleites, we all want to escape cabin fever in February. If the weather cooperates, what better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with an outdoor adventure?

When it comes to jaw-dropping skyline views and Puget Sound vistas, you can’t beat the Bremerton Ferry ride. All the beauty is surprisingly budget-friendly—just $8 roundtrip to travel as a foot-passenger, and half-price for youth and seniors.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we take coffee seriously. We like to know where the bean comes from, how it’s been roasted, and how best to brew it. One thing that the coffee pros do to really understand the bean is a coffee cupping—and it’s an excellent way to spend some time with a special someone, or a group, and enjoy the much-loved beverage in a new way.

Here in the wonderful world of 2015, you don’t need to go to a theater to have a wonderful movie-watching experience—and quite frankly, you can watch a movie just about anywhere you want! Check out three of our favorite spins on the private movie theater for this Valentine’s Day. You can get many of your favorite movies, both current and throwback, at Goodwill!

If you’ve known your date—or your group—for a while, you probably know a bit about their past, and what they loved as kids. You can have a lot of fun by planning out a day (or half day, or a few hours) by finding some of those throwback memory items, and creating an activity schedule around them.

Here in the great Pacific Northwest, there are thousands of outdoor places you can go. Even when the weather disagrees, many parks have wonderful gazebos and covered areas—and often a wooded area is enough protection from the northwest mist to have a wonderful experience outside. Adding a date and food to the outdoor adventure is a no-brainer!

An arts and crafts project can be a great way to relive those childhood memories, while slowing down and spending time with a loved one. You could plan your project in advance or be more impromptu. The ideas below can help you get started.

An ingredients-only potluck is as entertaining as an episode of “Chopped,” minus the stress and picky judges. It’s a perfect way to enjoy Valentine’s Day with friends, as a group date, or as a couple

Vintage board games, comfort food, and delectable desserts are a winning combination for a Happy Valentine’s Day, whatever your relationship status. Think about an evening in with your sweetheart, or festivities with your friends. Not sure what to play? Hit the shelves at Goodwill for some awesome table top finds! 

This thrifty Valentine’s Day idea might require a bit more planning—but is definitely worth it! Take your date on a city-wide scavenger or treasure hunt with clues that you’ve created to remind your significant other of shared memories and favorite moments between the two of you.

Thrift and thrill this Valentine’s Day as you and your loved one choose perfect gifts for each other. Try out our Thrift Shop Challenge!


Kim fancies herself a professional communicator. She has experience in writing, graphic design, and social media, and is always looking to expand her knowledge base into other fields of communication. She loves people, coffee & Seattle (including the rain).

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