MARLAB Research: How Did Greeks Celebrate Valentine’s Day? (February 17, 2019)

Valentine’s Day, known as Lovers’ Day, was first appeared and began to exist when people started mailing greeting cards on 14th of February, at seventeenth century, in Great Britain. Today consumers celebrate the Valentine’s Day all over the world by offering gifts to their beloved ones such as, romantic dinners, jewelries, flowers, sweets, cards etc. In 2018 at United States, Valentine’s Day brought a turn over of 20 billion dollars (instead of 19 billion dollars in 2017). However researches show that even though, each year more money are spent for gifts in USA, less people are celebrating this day (participation was reduced from 60% at 2009 to 33% at 2018).The biggest decrease of interest for Valentine’s day, is observed mainly at the age group 18-34. The major reasons that are mentioned for this reduction of interest, are the big commercialization of the day, the lack of a partner and the decrease of interest for celebration.

What happens in Greece at Valentine’s Day? How is it shaped, the consumer behavior of Greeks, at Valentine’s Day? Which is the attitude of Greeks? Does any interest still exist? The annual research of the Marketing laboratory Marlab, at University of Macedonia attempted to answer these questions. The research took place through the web at 14th and 15th of February 2019, under the scientific supervision, of the manager of Marlab, Professor Rodoula Tsiotsou.

The results of the survey showed that, at Valentine’s Day, the Greek consumers spent  for gifts the average amount of 31,68 euro (much less compared to last year, when the average amount was 43,6 euro) with a minimum spending of 1,80 euro and maximum of 650 euro.




More specifically, 25% of the sample stated, that they bought presents at Valentine ’s Day, while 35% received gifts from their beloved people. From the people that did buy gifts, 67 % offered them to their partner, 12% of them to their wife/husband and 5.5% of them to their friend. From the people that received gifts, 61% received gifts from their partner, 11% from theirs friends, 13% from their husband/wife and the rest 15% of them from parents, relatives, children, colleagues and classmates.

Regarding the gifts that were bought on Valentine’s Day, 44% of the participants declared that bought sweets, 21% flowers, 18% accessories, 14% clothes and underwear, and 3% cosmetics. Before the purchase of these products, 17.5% of the sample visited stores, 11.2% made a research at the internet through laptop, 16.3% made a research through mobile phone and 55% did not make any research.

72% of the participants bought gifts from shopping malls, whereas only 5.3 % bought them through the intern.11% of them purchased gifts both from stores and through the internet. For the purchase of these gifts, 68% paid  by cash,12% paid by credit card and 20% of them by debit card. The choice of the gifts was exclusively a personal decision (83%) or in coo-operation with friends (17%).

In the question of how the participants of the survey spent the Valentine’s day, 42% stated that it was like any other common day, 25% didn’t have any plans because don’t believe in this day, 7% had a romantic dinner at home, 7.7% spent the day with friends, 8% had a romantic dinner in a restaurant and a percentage of 5.7% spent the day alone.




75% of the participants who did not buy a gift said that they did it mainly for the following reasons: “I do not want to contribute to the commercialization of love.” “Because neither me nor my companion can afford it”,” I do not think it’s a special day. If I want to buy something to someone, I can do it any other day and not the day that they define as supposedly a “day of love” for any reasons, taking advantage of it to earn money”,” I don’t believe in this celebration. “

Regarding to the participants’ attitude, towards Valentine’s Day, the results of the survey showed that in the majority the Greeks are indifferent to this celebration (60.3%). Only 21.8% of the sample has a positive to very positive state of mind, while 17.9% have a negative to very negative view. However, when a comparison was made between their attitude and their relationship status (41% of the sample claimed that they were in a relationship, 26% were not in a relationship, 24% were married, and 5% were divorced) there is a correlation between the two. The people in a relationship showed a positive and very positive attitude (32%) to Valentine’s Day compared to the married one (23.7%), the single ones (10% %) and divorced (6.7%). Also, the divorced respondents expressed a more neutral attitude (80%) compared to the married ones (67%), the ones in a relationship (57.8%) and the singles (57.5). Also, those who were not in a relationship had a negative or very negative view (32.5%) in a higher percentage than the divorced (13.4%), those in a relationship (11.2%), and the married ones (10.1%). Finally, there were no differences in their opinion towards this particular celebration in the different age groups, neither between the sexes nor their level of education.

In conclusion, Valentine’s Day is treated rather casually by the vast majority of Greeks because they think it is not a real celebration, or because they think it is commercializing love, or because they have no partner and they can’t afford it economically as well. People who celebrate it are mostly married couples or people in a romantic relationship and they are actively participating either by buying gifts or by preparing a romantic dinner for their loved ones.

THE SAMPLE PROFILE: The questionnaire was answered by 374 people, 24% of whom were men and 82% were women. In terms of age, 43% of the participants were 18-24 years old, 33.6% were between 25-35 years old, 20% were between 36-50 years old and the remaining 3.4% were aged 51 years old and up. In terms of income, 36% reported an income of less than 10000 Euros, 38.3% between 10001 and 20000 Euros, 17.5% between 20001 and 30000 Euros and the remaining 8.2% higher than 30001 Euros. The sample was nationwide, coming from 32 different prefectures in the country.


Published by Athens News Agency-Macedonian Press Agency: