Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day in your country? In the UK it’s the most romantic day of the year!

February 14th is traditionally a celebration of love, so how do people in the UK mark the occasion?


Sending a Valentine’s card to a loved one is a custom that started more than a century ago. Couples give cards to each other, but it is also traditional to send an anonymous card to anyone you secretly love. This practice is particularly common in schools and can be a source of great amusement and embarrassment as everyone tries to work out who sent a card and who has a secret admirer! Valentine’s Day symbols on cards include hearts designs, doves, and the figure of the winged angel, Cupid.


The card might also feature a poem. Probably the most famous lines from a Valentine’s Day poem are:

Roses are red, violets are blue,
Honey is sweet, and so are you.

There are some ironic variations on this poem such as:

Roses are red, violets are blue,
You look like a monkey and smell like one too!

Mobile love

Millions of people use digital means of creating and sending Valentine’s Day greeting messages such as e-cards, social media posts or printable greeting cards. Texting your Valentine message is an easy (although maybe not very romantic!) option. Valentine’s Day text messages include:

  • WUBMV – will you be my Valentine
  • xoxoxoxoxo – hugs and kisses
  • LUWAM<3 – love you with all my heart
  • ImRdy4Luv – I’m ready for love
  • :'-) – I’m so happy, I’m crying
  • ILUVU – I love you

Flowers and chocolates

As well as cards, February 14th is also a day for giving gifts. Traditionally, men give chocolates or flowers to their wives or girlfriends. There are lots of websites offering advice on which Valentine’s present to buy. Popular choices include red roses, a box of chocolates, romantic songs, a phone, jewellery, a photo frame or perfume.

Unusual gifts

Some people think that flowers and chocolates seem a little ordinary and so they look for a more unusual gift. For romantic people with plenty of cash, these gifts could include a helicopter flight, a balloon ride, the chance to test-drive a Ferrari or an all-day session at a health club.

Others, however, complain that Valentine’s Day is yet another opportunity for ever-increasing commercialism. For true romantics, the gift of love is enough. Valentine's Day is a popular day to either propose or get married – you’d never forget your wedding anniversary!

Valentine’s Day: love it or hate it?

We asked a few Brits about their views on Valentine’s Day and here’s what they said. Following the tradition of Valentine’s Day, all the comments below are anonymous.

Love it! I always send cards to my mates – and my boyfriend, of course.

I would prefer to go without it. I don’t want gifts or money or anything like that. Knowing that I’m appreciated and that I can make others happy is good enough for me.

I got a card last year – but I still don’t know who sent it. I haven’t got a girlfriend.

My mum sends me a card every year. It’s sort of sweet but I think I’m getting a bit old for that now.

It’s just really humiliating. I’ve never received a Valentine’s card in my life. A day to switch off my phone because I know I’m not going to get any messages.

My boyfriend sent me a text message last year on Valentine’s Day. I suppose that’s kind of romantic but I’d rather have a present or even a real card.

I sent an anonymous Valentine’s card to a boy in my class when I was younger. Then my brother told him it was from me. I was so embarrassed!

I’m single so it’s definitely irritating. It’s too commercial anyway.

If a girl likes me I don’t need to waste money sending her a card just because it’s a tradition.

Chocolates, roses, cards, presents. Bring it on! I love Valentine’s Day!

Total votes: 737


Do you celebrate Valentine's Day? If not, is there a similar day in your country?


Elsa007's picture
Elsa007 15 February, 2015 - 10:29

Yes, we celebrate Valentine's Day, although a market is more and more leading a commercialized farce...!

101 users have voted.
iva10's picture
iva10 14 February, 2015 - 17:23

Yes i celebrate Valentines day,but i don t have a boyfriend jet.Happy Valentines day everyone,wishes you iva10.

101 users have voted.
Wesal's picture
Wesal 11 February, 2015 - 08:21

We do not celebrate Valentine's day, but if someone love with each other in my mind there is no need for Valentine's day for lovers every day even every second is valentine's day moment, please enjoy your life with lovers, wherever you are.

104 users have voted.
JoEditor's picture
JoEditor 10 February, 2015 - 12:17

Hi maihuong,
I'm not sure what you mean by FA. Can you explain? 
Best wishes, Jo (LearnEnglish Teens Team) 

89 users have voted.
duonglinhha3333's picture
duonglinhha3333 1 March, 2015 - 09:10

Hi! I know the meaning of FA is forever alone that means you donnot have boy/girl friend or husband or wife, still alone.

91 users have voted.
CrazyArman's picture
CrazyArman 18 May, 2014 - 17:47

I am from Bosnia and Hezegovina,we celebrate it with buying gifts,flowers,cards,... But,if you like your should show your love everyday,not only on February 14th ...

18 users have voted.
Olenka_cake's picture
Olenka_cake 24 April, 2014 - 14:58

We celebrate Valentine’s Day at school. It's a good tradition. Everywhere we can hear the laughter and see the smiles. It's great. But as for me, I can't understand this holiday. I think it's a good way to get flowers and chocolate. I love chocolate ^_^ But Valentine’s Day isn't for me.

16 users have voted.
Acelorus's picture
Acelorus 24 March, 2014 - 12:49

I live in Estonia and I think Valentines day is celebreted in Estonia. People send cards and give gifts for their loved ones. In school we have a box where students can put their cards in.

14 users have voted.
Dia's picture
Dia 26 February, 2014 - 22:22

In Romania we celebrate the Valentine's Day on 14 February,but is a similar celebration on February 24 called "Dragobete", which actually is the traditional celebration of ancestors.

13 users have voted.
Konstantina's picture
Konstantina 21 February, 2014 - 13:53

Yes,we celebrate valentine's day,we do the same things<3It is sweet to see couples on the streets.I never got a present or a card or flowers but a child wrote my name on the school wall with big letters,this is my experience.XD lol

16 users have voted.
Kittylove's picture
Kittylove 19 February, 2014 - 21:27

In Turkey only couples and radio stations celebrate it.(In Konya, I don't know other cities a lot)

13 users have voted.
maybeoneday's picture
maybeoneday 16 February, 2014 - 19:42

I'm from Turkey. We celebrate this day but it's not a tradition to give cards anonymously here.
Couples give presents to each other. But , as you know women more cares about presents so men's presents are much more important than women's present.
Some Turks think that Valentines Day invented by malls :D I agree the shop owners earn a lot money before Valentines Day. :D

13 users have voted.
Melek's picture
Melek 16 February, 2014 - 18:35

I'm from Turkey. We celebrate valentines day in Turkey.Most of people gives eachother flowers and chocolate. -Dilara

17 users have voted.
AprilChellz's picture
AprilChellz 16 February, 2014 - 14:09

Hi! In Turkey, we don't celebrate it tradionally but some couples buy each other chocolates, flowers or gifts.

15 users have voted.