Women prefer to be given a card or chocolates on Valentines Day

The Hague – Eight out of ten women find that a little surprise, like a card with loving words or a box of chocolates, is the nicest thing to receive on Valentines Day. This fact emerged from PostNL's research into Valentine gift giving behaviour. Over half of Dutch men (63%) said that they plan to give their sweetheart (or secret sweetheart) a little something on 14 February. Most of these men (36%) go to a shop to buy a present, but don't spend that much time selecting this. One in four really go out shopping to find just the right gift. The same percentage prefer speed and convenience, buying the gift online.

In particular, men aged under 40 are happy to take advantage of the benefits offered by the Internet. Men aged 60 and older appear to be less willing to take time out for their sweetheart; one in ten men in this age category even sends his better half out to find a little gift for herself. All told, modest gifts appear to be the most popular: 45% of the men who buy something for their sweetheart choose a nice card and 43% buy flowers. Only the very occasional woman says that she would like to be given a large or expensive gift, like a diamond ring for example.

Not everyone is equally romantic

One out of five women are likely to be disappointed on Valentines Day: they may want a lot, but are in a relationship where their other half lets Valentines Day pass without a thought or present. Chances are, this woman will be the partner or spouse of a man over the age of 40. Research shows that four out of ten men in this age group do not give their sweetheart (or secret sweetheart) anything on 14 February, making this group of women the most neglected on Valentines Day.

PostNL helps men find their way to Valentines Day

To help these men on their way, PostNL's online greetings card service KaartWereld set out to ask men whether they had already arranged a little something for their sweetheart on Valentines Day. The KaartWereld team offered help to those who were remiss: together they ordered a free Valentines Day card online via PostNL's KaartWereld site to be sent to the sweetheart (or secret sweetheart).

About the research

The online research into men and their Valentines Day gift and card-giving behaviour was carried out on behalf of PostNL by Kien Onderzoek using a representative sample of 1,483 respondents. The field work was carried out in January 2012.