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2014 Valentine's Day Survey Results Are Live!

By Kelly Dobkin
February 10, 2014

Valentine's Day is one of the busiest nights of the year for restaurants, but with so many different ways celebrate, are most folks planning to dine out this year? You'll find the answer to this and more burning questions with the results of our 2014 Valentine's Day Survey. From PDA at the table, to favorite romantic cuisines, we asked you for your opinion on all things romantic-related when it comes to dining out. Check out this year's results below, and let us know what we missed in the comments.

  • This Year, More People Planning to Dine Somewhere New for V-Day

    Valentine's Day is one of the busiest restaurant days of the year, and that's even with 54% of people saying that they either stay home and cook (30%), order in (5%) or don't celebrate at all (19%). The 42% of folks who do go out plan on trying someplace new (that they haven't been to before) this year; in fact, 43% say they plan to visit a new restaurant for V-Day this year (compared with only 29% last year). While 22% say they will hit an old favorite, there were a fair share of procrastinators in the bunch, as 29% hadn't decided on their plans at the time of the survey.

    Will you be dining out?
    Yes: 42%
    No, I'll celebrate with a home-cooked meal: 30%
    No, I'll be ordering in: 5%
    I'll be celebrating, but not with a meal: 4%
    Don't plan to celebrate at all this year: 19%

    Where will you be dining out?
    Someplace new: 43%
    Haven't decided: 29%
    Old favorite: 22%
    Don't know/my date will surprise me: 6%

  • Any Other Day but February 14

    Dining out on Valentine's Day proper can be a big hassle, and our survey results reflected this. Most folks don't find it all that important to dine out on February 14, with 56% saying they preferred to go out another day.

    When celebrating Valentine's Day with your romantic partner, would you prefer to go out to eat on:
    Another day: 56%
    February 14: 44%

  • Going Dutch Still Not Sexy; Couples Spending More on Dinner Than Gifts

    V-Day dinner is always a pricey affair. Those surveyed said that they expect to spend an average of $158.43 on dinner for two, that's up from $142.11 in 2013. But how much is too much to spend on a V-Day dinner date? $258.98 is the breaking point, according to our surveyors, with males ($277.04) willing to spend more than females ($249.99).

    So how about splitting up the check for a little financial relief? Most folks say: forget it. Only 10% say that they expect to go dutch, with the overwhelming majority of respondents saying that either they (56%) or their date (34%) will pick up the full bill.

    For some, a romantic night on the town isn't enough, you also have to show up with a special gift: 58% percent say that they will give gifts on February 14. But most folks are spending more on a big meal than the gift itself. The reported average spend this year is $93.17, down from last year's average spend of $103.79. Add that to the average price of dinner, and you're in it for over $250. Cupid's arrows don't come cheap, that's for sure.

    Do you intend to pay for the entire dinner out?
    Yes: 56%
    No, my date will pay: 34%
    No, we plan to go dutch: 10%

  • It's Not You, It's Me

    Thinking of popping the question at the dinner table? Think again, say our surveyors. 73% of voters say that marriage proposals at restaurants are cheesy, so maybe getting down on one knee elsewhere is a more creative option.

    While proposing at the table can be cringe-inducing, breaking up with your significant other is even worse. Only 10% of surveyors said that restaurants are an acceptable place to do the deed, while 90% say "no way." It should also be noted: breaking up is a surefire way to kill both your appetites. Just sayin'.

    Marriage proposals at restaurants: cheesy or romantic?
    Cheesy: 73%
    Romantic: 27%

    Are restaurants an acceptable place to break up?
    Yes: 10%
    No: 90%

  • How Long Do You Have to Be Dating to Celebrate?

    Is Valentine's Day only for well-established couples? Our survey says: not really. Only 15% of survey takers think that turning Valentine's Day into a special occasion is acceptable after less than a month of going out, while 44% want to celebrate after one to five months of dating. Then there's the 19% of folks who think you have to be going out for 12 months or more to turn the holiday into something special. With most folks stating that less than a year is just fine for celebrating, we're glad to see commitment phobes are in the minority. 

    How long do you have to be dating before turning February 14 into a special occasion?
    Less than a month: 15%
    1-5 months: 44%
    6-11 months: 22%
    12 months or more: 19%

  • Now That's Amore

    When it comes to what type of cuisine diners find most V-Day appropriate, Italian (28%) and French (27%) were the top picks, with New American (19%) just behind in third place. Spanish/Tapas came in a way-distant fourth place with 7%, and after that, Japanese, rounding out the top five slots with a mere 4%. Guess most folks will skip the sushi this February 14. Check out these results in the infographic above.

  • PDA: How Much (If Any) Is OK at the Table?

    PDA, aka public displays of affection, are always a controversial topic when it comes to dining out. But it turns out, most folks aren't bothered by a reasonable amount of it, with 54% responding that a canoodling and short kisses were just fine, 33% said hand-holding is where it should stop, while a mere 5% said "anything goes." Only 4% responded "can't touch this."

    What level of PDA (public display of affection) is acceptable in restaurants?

    Canoodling and a few quick kisses are fine: 54%
    Hand-holding is as far as it should go: 33%
    Anything goes: 5%
    Passionate kissing doesn't bother me: 4%
    No PDA whatsoever:  4%

  • Photo by: Jenna Barrett

    Dating in Bars: Not So Much

    As for the singles side of things, this can be a big time of year for picking up a potential date at a local watering hole. With the popularity of online dating, are people still meeting in this "old-fashioned" manner? Sure, but it seems like most folks are pretty shy when it comes to going up to a stranger in a bar and asking for their digits. 45% responded that they've never dated someone they met in a bar, while 23% said they did and it went nowhere, and another 23% said it turned into a relationship. Go figure.

    Have you ever dated a fellow patron you met in a bar?

    No: 45%
    Yes and it turned into a relationship: 23%
    Yes and it went nowhere: 23%
    I don't go out to bars: 9%

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