On a budget this year but still want to treat your honey to a great weekend away? We’ve got you covered. Here are our picks for the best budget* U.S. Valentine’s vacations (including flights** and hotels) from sea to shining sea!
Budget Valentine’s Flights to the Pacific Northwest: Portland, Oregon
Is lush, rainy Seattle the best city for lovers in the Pacific Northwest? Or does Vancouver take the prize? We’re gonna go with Portland for the win this year. Why? It’s got an utterly unpretentious, affordable, walkable city center, delicious dining options, and let’s face it – over the top quirkiness. One low-key Valentine’s Day itinerary might go something like this: Grab a cup of coffee with a whimsical treat at Voodoo Doughnut and head over to Powell’s Independent Bookstore for a morning perusing dog-eared copies of classic romantic poetry from Wordsworth, Pablo Neruda and Rimbaud. Close out the night with a Valentine’s Day dinner and “Under the Covers” concert at the Doug Fir Lounge.
The Ace Hotel is still a fun, cool option. Junior Suites ($164/night) come with their own turntable and assortment of vinyl, private bath, and funky décor. The front desk loans out complimentary books and bikes for guests, and Clyde Commons next door is a fantastic place to unwind and dine on the cheap.
Nonstop flights from San Francisco (Oakland) on Alaska Airlines for $123 and connecting flights from Austin on Frontier for around $230.
Romantic Southwest Valentine’s Trip: Phoenix, Arizona
Phoenix and Scottsdale are an active couple’s romantic break from the winter chill that covers much of the nation. There’s no end to top quality golf courses and there are literally hundreds of miles of hiking trails to experience together. Dining and entertainment options are varied and inexpensive so you can push that budget Valentine’s Day mood without breaking the bank. What’s not to love? With what you save on everything else, you can afford to go a little bit more luxe, with your hotel options.
Go big and stay in a secluded casita at the cozy, picturesque Royal Palms Resort ($660/night) and get the Romance Package. **
Nonstop flights from Los Angeles on American for $186, from Chicago (ORD) for under $193, and from New York (JFK) for $270.
Enchantment in the Midwest: A Kansas City, Missouri Budget Valentine’s Trip
We love big cities that have a small town vibe and Kansas City is one of the best. With no huge must-see sights, snuggly couples can just enjoy one another against the backdrop of KC. Spend time sampling some of the best BBQ in the world, strolling around the Power and Light District or visiting the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art.
The Cedar Crest Lodge is an affordable, idyllic rural Bed & Breakfast an hour outside of Kansas City. Oversized, luxurious rooms come with king size beds and 2-person steam showers. Rooms are $629/night for Valentine’s weekend “Couple’s package” which is a steal and a half. The couples package includes the follwing (from their website):
- Six chocolate-covered strawberries, your choice of champagne or sparkling cider, and two keepsake champagne flutes waiting in your room.
- That evening enjoy a delectable three-course dinner delivered to your room.
- After breakfast you will be found in the spa luxuriating in a one-hour couple’s Swedish massage.
- A tasty picnic lunch will be ready when you are, and includes a cheese/fruit appetizer, gourmet sandwiches, delightful salad and, of course, something for your sweet tooth!
- That evening, a second dinner for two in our main lodge will tempt your tastebuds and offer yet another wonderful culinary experience.
Take the train (how romantic!) from Chicago (ORD) for just $138. Flights from Detroit on Spirit are $270.
New England Romance Vibes: Litchfield Hills, Connecticut
When you’re thinking romantic getaway, do visions of a 330 year-old Connecticut manor dance through your travel dreams? Ours too! Winvian Farm in Connecticut might be just the ticket this Valentine’s Day if tranquil, patrician relaxation is your bag. Their website expressly states that at Winvian Farm, “every day can be as active or as idle as you wish,” and we think Valentine’s weekend is a great time to test that theory. A full service spa, fitness & yoga studio, wine cellar and farm to table dining room will not disappoint.
A la carte cottages start at $799 a night for Valentine’s week and include breakfast. Try the Secret Society Cottage (sleep in a king size bed directly under a panoramic glass ceiling).
It’s a 90 mile drive from LaGuardia and you can get flights from Washington D.C. (DCA) on American for $133 roundtrip.
A Southern Hospitality Valentine’s Getaway: Asheville, North Carolina
You could go with the traditionally southern gothic destination of Savannah (that’s also a solid choice), but since Asheville is definitely having a moment right now we’d love for you to visit and see for yourself why it’s coming up. The town’s got a strong microbrew game, it’s smack in the middle of the dazzling Blue Ridge Mountains for your stomping pleasure, and friendly locals who’re happy to steer you toward delicious dining. We like the lavender French toast at the Over Easy Café on a lazy morning. Win, win and win!
Stay at the Aloft Asheville Downtown and you’ll be in walking distance of everything. Prices vary but average around $300 per night for a room plus some seasonal, eclectic experiences. Rooms are spacious, modern and nicely appointed.
Nonstop flights to Asheville are nonexistent, and connecting flights are kind of pricey. Fly into Greenville, SC (a 45 minute hop) and you’ll score nonstop service and save big for your budget Valentine’s celebration. Flights from Atlanta on American are $333 and $346 from Denver.
For additional reading, here’s some V-Day tips for making the holiday go off without a hitch.
*Double accommodation and flights during Valentine’s week dates for under $2,o00 total per couple
**Fares include taxes and fees and are valid as of 1/25/23 on select dates between 02/10/23 and 2/15/23. Lowest fare seats are capacity controlled and may not be available on every airline, flight, or date. Fares subject to change without notice.