Between flowers, dinner and those heart shaped boxes of chocolates, the average American spends $133.91 on Valentine’s Day. Here’s the thing though; flowers die, fancy restaurants are crowded and chances are, you’re only going to like about one-tenth of those chocolates after biting into them. Valentine’s Day shouldn’t burn a hole in your pocket, especially if you’re a broke college student. Here are some unconventional places to take your significant other that won’t break your bank and are right on Purdue’s campus.
Why shell out major cash on an expensive dinner when all you really want is a Big Mac? If you head to McDonald’s on February 14th, you’ll find candlelit booths covered in white tablecloth. The crew will even greet you at the door, take your order table-side and deliver it to you. It’s just like a fancy restaurant where you can sit back and relax, no reservation necessary.
Qdoba is urging its customers to share the love this Valentine’s Day. Their popular BOGO for a Kiss promotion is back for another year. Anyone who purchase one entrée and then shares a kiss with a significant other at the cash register will receive a second entrée for free. A burrito for me and nachos for you? Quesadillas? Tacos? The possibilities are endless. It doesn’t even have to be a significant other so just bring along anyone willing to kiss you for free food.
3. School House of Chili
Nothing says “love” like chili and booze. For just $12.99 you can get 2 BYOB, 2 beverages and a heart shaped brownie with your meal at the School House of Chili. Bonus points if you have the same name that they choose to receive a free bowl of chili that day. I’m still waiting for them to use Claire.
Skip the pricy box of chocolates and get Baked! This relatively new cookie shop is a really unique experience. Think Coldstone meets Insomnia. You get to choose your dough plus your mix-ins and they bake your cookies right in front of you. Then you can choose any additional add-ons after it comes out of the oven. Just for Valentine’s Day you can get a heart shaped cookie cake with a customized message. Bathing suit season, here I come.
5. The Discount Den
Everyone gets thirsty, so why not bring a partner to The Discount Den anytime on Friday and get not one, but two 30 ounce drinks for the low, low price of 60 cents. Beware, they recently implemented a two dollar minimum to use a credit card, so you should probably buy your sweetie some Doritos to go with that soda.
6. Papa Murphy’s
If you’re a pizza lover like me, fear not. Papa Murphy’s is offering its cleverly named “HeartBaker” pizza for just $7.00 through Friday. Speaking from personal experience, this is a fantastic deal. Just pick up one of these from the Papa Murphy’s in West Lafayette and then enjoy a nice evening at home while you and your boo heat things up… to 450 degrees. Honestly, the only thing heartbreaking about this deal is that Papa Murphy’s is a take-and-bake restaurant, so you have to wait 20 minutes for the pizza to cook.
If the only committed relationship you’re in is with Netflix, there’s no shame in just staying at home and avoiding all the overrated hype of the holiday. Snuggle up with a bottle of wine, try out your own version of the cookie dough Oreo and forget all about your romantic woes.