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Locally Listed: Top 5 Places to Shop for Your Valentine

by Kaylee Stinebiser

Let’s recap.

The last two weeks of December, we were all so excited to be done with our Fall semester classes that we went on a shopping spree and spent too much money on Christmas presents.

The first week of January, we had to sell literally anything we could on Ebay to make enough money to buy our textbooks for the Spring (and you’re probably still shocked that someone from Kansas bought your old pair of Adidas).

Now, you’re back in class and not working as much, so you’re still broke, but now you have to spend the money that you don’t have on Valentine’s Day presents. So what do you do?

If you’re looking for a gift for someone you love — significant other, parent, grandparent, sibling, roommate, friend with benefits? — but you’re afraid that everyone in line behind you at the checkout will laugh when the chip reader machine bitches at you and declines your credit card, here’s a list of places to shop for your Valentine that won’t make your bank account cry.

  • Five Below

This whole store is generally a safe place to take your wallet — if you have retail self control (which I do not). If you’re good at going into a store, picking up what you went there for, and leaving without add-ons, then you’ll speed through your V-Day shopping here, and your wallet will thank you. If you often find yourself going into a store for a new T-shirt, and then suddenly you’re in the toy section holding a new puzzle, proceed with caution.

  • Old General Store

The Old General Store is a great place to find really personal, thoughtful gifts. The shelves are stocked with trinkets and dinglehoppers that your Valentine see on display at Walmart or Target, so the gifts are all the more special. It’s also full of things that look antique but really aren’t (if you’re into that sort of thing).

  • Joann’s

You can always find great materials for homemade gifts at Joann’s, and if you go with the right coupons in your pocket (via the app or printed off of their website), you can get out pretty cheap with a thoughtful plan. You don’t have to be artistic to shop here, though! There are tons of things — decorations, knick-knacks — that you can buy there, no further assembly required.   

  • Walmart

Everything’s cheaper at Walmart! At least, that’s what the commercials say. If you’re desperate for a cheap gift, the Valentine’s Day section is usually pretty well stocked. Don’t wait too long, though, because St. Patrick’s Day is *gasp* over a month after V-Day, and Walmart moves on fast.

  • Amazon

This is probably only a cheap gift-locator if you have prime (which most people do, these days). It’s also good for procrastinators (I ❤ two-day shipping). Amazon has everything, so if you’re too busy to get to an actual store and want it to show up at your doorstep instead, have at it.

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