Valentine’s Day: Southeast Asians are spending more

Photo via

By Jason Thomas/ – Southeast Asians are spending more on Valentine’s Day, with new research confirming that the most romantic day of the year is becoming increasingly commercialised.

The 2019 Mastercard Love Index released yesterday reveals that Asia Pacific leads the world when it comes to growth in sentimental spending for Valentine’s Day. Compared to 2016, Asians spent 33 percent more on their loved one in 2018 – with the overall number of transactions up by 37 percent. In contrast, sentimental spending in the United States dropped by eight percent during the same period.

Now in its fourth year, the annual study was created by specifically analysing credit, debit and prepaid card transactions from 11-14 February over a three-year period (2016-2018). The report defined sentimental spending as all spending on restaurants, hotels, transportation, jewellery, books, records and stationery during the four-day span.

Sentimental spending has increased across the board in the four Southeast Asian countries in the study; Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. It rose the most in the Philippines (48 percent), followed by Singapore (28 percent), Thailand (25 percent) and Malaysia (23 percent).

Specific trends in spending

Seen as an opportunity to cash in on the public’s infatuation with Valentine’s Day, retailers are constantly creating innovative promotions to attract couples in order to stand out in an increasingly competitive market. Due to increased demand, prices for Valentine’s Day gifts such as roses and chocolates are double or triple during the period – with lovebirds paying a premium to profess their love for one another on this special day.


Find more like this: News

  • The women who helped shape Philippine feminism
  • How to Retire in the Philippines
  • This play tells the urgent story of a Filipino comfort woman
  • Oops: Kare-kare, lechon, and crispy pata are the real placers in ‘Best Dishes In The World’ 2019 list
  • A peek into the Revised Corporation Code of the Philippines
  • Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7


  • This play tells the urgent story of a Filipino comfort woman
  • Will ‘Sahaya’ be the first Pinoy series on Netflix?
  • Z-GIRLS, Z-BOYS with Pinoy members to debut in Korea
  • Marvel Comics introduces new characters; Filipino superhero to make waves
  • ‘The first Pixnoys’: Filipinos will finally see themselves in Pixar short film
  • MORE...


  • Showcase of PH culture, heritage
  • US and Philippines: Friends, Partners, and Allies
  • A Transgender Paradox, and Platform, in the Philippines
  • The Box That Brings Christmas to the Philippines
  • ‘Pinoy Aquaman’ swims 23 kilometers for peace in Mindanao
  • MORE...


  • Philippines records ‘all-time high’ 7.1M tourist arrivals in 2018
  • Philippines island Boracay reopens for test run following huge cleanup
  • Philippines closes ‘cesspool’ tourist island of Boracay
  • Boracay Set to Ban Tourists for Six Months During Island ‘Rehabilitation’
  • Boracay: the good, bad and ugly sides to Philippine island for tourists
  • MORE...


  • Filipino speed skater bags spot in 2020 Winter Youth Olympics
  • Pinoy gymnast Carlo Yulo earns historic qualification in worlds
  • Finding a way to bring the NBA to the Philippines
  • First Filipino table tennis Olympian Ian “Yanyan” Lariba dies at 23
  • Skateboarder Margielyn Didal wins 4th gold for Philippines
  • MORE...

    OFW News

  • DOLE suspends OFW deployment to Kuwait
  • Some OFWs turn to vlogging to beat loneliness, share life abroad
  • Overseas Filipino Bank to serve immigrants, workers
  • The ‘bagong bayani’ of the Philippines
  • Which countries pay OFWs the highest?
  • MORE...


  • Boracay Set to Ban Tourists for Six Months During Island ‘Rehabilitation’
  • Boracay: the good, bad and ugly sides to Philippine island for tourists
  • Luzon has greatest concentration of unique mammals
  • Mindanao plants 3M trees in an hour, challenges world record
  • Fighting for sharks in the Philippines
  • MORE...

    Pinoy Places
    and Faces