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

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

Cards

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.

Poems

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

Discussion

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

Comments

Cosmo Myzrail Gorynych's picture
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Cosmo Myzrail G... 12 February, 2013 - 05:43

Ahoy from Kamchatka!
We are from Russia and we do celebrate St. Valentine's day! As usual we celebrate it as British people do - we send cards, give roses and buy chocolate :) But in my view men send cards more often than women - a man should make a "first step towards love". Also I can say that this holiday is more popular among young people rather then adults. (To say truth English teachers make us to celebrate this occasion and to write cards although it isn't an official holiday at all ;D )

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SARAH K's picture
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SARAH K 11 February, 2013 - 20:24

ALBANIANS CELEBRATE A LOT ST VALENTINE'S DAY. I THINK THAT IS THE ONLY DAY WHEN ALBANIANS ARE THE LOVEST PEOPLE IN THE UNIVERS. I DO NOT REALLY LIKE THIS DAY.

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Gabby's picture
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Gabby 10 February, 2013 - 12:23

Here in Brazil we don't celebrate Valentine's Day, but there is a special day just for boyfriends and girlfriends exchange presents and spend time together. It happens at 12th June.

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Darina's picture
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Darina 8 February, 2013 - 09:41

I live in Kazakhstan and here people don't celebrate Valentine's Day , but I with my friends celebrate this day. It;s such nice day ))

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Mr Cheese's picture
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Mr Cheese 8 February, 2013 - 09:16

I think Valentine's Day is a great day. It's the day of Love.
Personnally, I'm single and I didn't celebrated yet.
Maybe this year.

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ingrida's picture
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ingrida 7 February, 2013 - 20:11

HI !!! I live in Albania and Valentine's Day celebrated here but I'm not sure if it is like in different countries of the world. but i like this day

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bugs bunny's picture
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bugs bunny 7 February, 2013 - 14:47

In Greece we celebrate st.Valentines day too. But we are orthodox here so we celebrate it unofficialy. We have st. Yakinthos day in July... but very few people know it. I don 't like st Valentine 's day. Such romantic stuff reminds me I don 't have a girlfriend :(((

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Demy 14 February, 2013 - 14:46

Hi bugs bunny! I heard about this day!!! I am very glad that you remind me about it! I often visited Greece and I already miss this wonderful country! Maybe I will come soon... How is there now?
Please answer! I wait.........

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Sabina's picture
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Sabina 7 February, 2013 - 12:31

I live in Ukraine,and we here celebrate this day.
I love this day because,it's romantic.
I do a postcard and this day is a chance for use my imagination.In this day I give a present not only boyfriend,but and friend and teachers.In this day any be happy for a postcard.
My friends are very happy when I give him postcard made by myself.

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merlin's picture
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merlin 4 February, 2013 - 21:22

i am from albania and my country doesn t celebrate valentine s day as well as the others but has recently started to be celebrated by the young age .i think valentine day is very special

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TeenGirlie's picture
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TeenGirlie 4 February, 2013 - 14:11

I live in Ukraine, and people here also celebrate St. Valentin's Day, usually by giving cards, tiny presents, chocolate etc.

So glad to read this article, and to feel the atmosphere of a coming holiday! Waiting impatiently for it! <33

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crystal_'s picture
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crystal_ 31 January, 2013 - 09:32

I'm from China.Many young couple will celebrate this romantic festival.But no me,beacuse I'm a High school students so I was forbidden love. T- T. But happy to all couples.

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AnnaK's picture
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AnnaK 29 January, 2013 - 17:44

hello^^ I am from Ukraine. and we celebrate Valentine's day. We give valentine cards. Last year I got 101 valentine cards^_^

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Ess96 29 January, 2013 - 12:31

In Egypt we celeberate valentine's day on 4 November but actually I don't believe in valentine's day if there are couple love each other , it should be all their days like valentine's day not one day only

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megisiana's picture
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megisiana 24 January, 2013 - 14:46

i don't celebrate the Valentines Day....but in my country is same with Britain ,..........in Albania is celebrated by all couples.....................

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Vasso 23 January, 2013 - 00:29

I'm from Montenegro. In my country, we celebrate Valentine's day, but on our language it's called St. Triphun ( Sveti Trifun ) and Valentine's Day ( Dan Zaljubljenih).
It's very important day for me now!
When you find true love, you don't care so much about Christmas, New Year or Easter, you care about Valentine's day!

I love it!

We celebrate it in my school, all wearing yellow t-shirts while sleeping and red sweaters on 14th of February. :D

I hope, I haven't made many mistakes, sorry!

Best wishes, Vasilije

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kristina sheme's picture
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kristina sheme 21 January, 2013 - 21:06

Hello.. I'm from Albania. Here we also celebrate Valentine's Day.. It's the same as in Britain. All the lovers share with each-other different gifts to show their love.. such as chocolates.. flowers teddy bears etc.. but i think that the most important thing is to be near the one you love that special day :)

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Kheda Brattford's picture
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Kheda Brattford 20 January, 2013 - 17:54

Hi everybody! I'm from Russia. I'm not Russian but we also celebrate this day (especially in school). There are "Angels of Love"(they're schoolgirls/boys dressed as angels) greet at the doors of our school in every Valentine’s Day. We have such postmen for anonymous scholboys and girls)

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