Valentine’s Day is changing.

Gen Z are spending more money than ever on the most romantic day of the year, but more of it is being spent on themselves rather than other people.

New figures from Finder show that Gen Z (those born between 1997 and 2012) are spending significantly more money than any other age group for Valentines.

However, more people are treating themselves this Valentine’s Day and this could be down to Gen Z’s non traditional take on the age old holiday.

As Valentine’s Day has always been a very commercially-driven holiday, businesses are taking note of Gen Z’s apathy towards the traditional ‘romantic’ celebrations and have begun hosting ‘Galentines’ and singles events across the country.  

Liverpool’s Bierkeller will be hosting a ‘Galentine’s Ball’ on February 10 for £5 per ticket.

‘Skint Tuesdays’ will be going ahead as a Galentine’s special on Valentine’s Day at Peacock and Moloko for £5 per person.

A ‘Galentine’s Ballpit Bottomless Brunch’ is also being held at The Ball Park Liverpool on February 11 at £37.85 per ticket for those looking for something different.

Gen Z women share time with their friends

‘Galentine’s’ is being embraced by Gen Z women who are opting to use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to share the holiday of love with their friends.

TikTok videos featuring the tag #galentinesday have been collecting millions of likes, with young women sharing their plans to host a valentine’s party for their friends.

Lorna Mcritchie, a 21-year-old Liverpool University student is planning a ‘Galentine’s Day’ party for her and her friends.

She said: “I do plan on celebrating Valentines Day but celebrating love in friendship which I think is more important.

“It’s the non-traditional way, but we’ll be spending the day baking cookies and having brunch.” 

Plenty of Liverpool bars and nightclubs are using Valentine’s Day as an excuse to host singles nights, as Gen Z’s appetite for a non-traditional Valentines is becoming more apparent.  

However, exploring why Gen Z is less likely to celebrate a traditional Valentine’s is less hearts and flowers.  

Gen Z are Dating Differently

Paper heart decoration for Valentine’s. Original public domain image from Wikimedia Commons

It is easy to see why Gen Z may be more sceptical of the romantic holiday when a body of research supports the notion that Gen Z have a more ‘pragmatic’ approach to dating and sex. 

This could be down to the large amount of Gen Z having entered adulthood during a pandemic, and the online dating revolution altering the way Gen Z approach relationships. 

 A State of the Youth Nation 2020 survey revealed that 40% of 16-24 year olds are “happily single”, which was a 10% increase from 2018.

This can be attributed to the isolation of a pandemic and a less pressing need for young people to ‘settle down’.  

In 2023 marrying young no longer feels like a necessity for Gen Z and young women have been embracing their independence.

So it is unsurprising Gen Z are putting off the celebration of eternal love – or are altering it at least.

The emergence of ‘Galentine’s’ can be chalked up to a drastic change in the Gen Z approach to love and dating.

It appears that young people are prioritising the lasting relationships that are their friendships this year.


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