If you just woke up this morning and realized it was Valentine’s day, or are otherwise without a plan, worry not: all you need is your smartphone, and Third Coast is here to make sure you get through this Valentine’s Day.
Find a last-minute gift:
There’s Amazon for…well, everything, and with Prime Now’s 2 hour delivery, you still have time to order something! There’s also some interesting gift finders out there, but our favorite was the Genius Gift Idea Generator. It’s only available on Android and but it’s simple, fun and actually full of some great ideas. Answer a few questions and you’re on your way.
If that doesn’t lead to anything though, flowers might be a good way to go. FTD has an app that helps you locate shops and set up deliveries, even same day, and if that falls through, believe it or not, Walgreens is awash in fresh flowers for Valentine’s Day, so use the app’s store locator to find your nearest store and grab some. If the person you’re buying for isn’t into flowers, try Edible Arrangements’ app and send them some sweet treats.
Find a last minute reservation:
OpenTable is our first choice for finding a reservation this V-Day, as it can easily get you in somewhere fancy or get you a table for the Valentine’s Day special at White Castle (yes, really.) There’s also Restaurant Finder for you savvy Android users, and believe it or not, TripAdvisor has a reservation system in place on their app for iOS or Android, as well as restaurant info and ratings.
Looking for something fun to do? Check out the Do312 app, which will give you a look at all the things you can do in Chicago this Valentine’s Day and beyond. For right now, it’s iOS only, but there’s an Android app on the way!
When you’re out dining, look informed:
If you’re worried about some of the details while you’re out dining– don’t worry, there are apps that have you covered. If you want to plan ahead, or find yourself without parking in a pinch, local start-up turned phenomenon SpotHero (link) has you covered. Compare different parking locations by distance and price, and choose the one that fits your needs. If something goes wrong with your reservation, or anything else unexpected occurs, you can contact their great customer service team.
Want to make informed wine choices to impress your date? Vivino is like having a sommelier in your pocket. Scan wine labels or even a restaurant’s wine list to get access to thousands of crowd-sourced reviews and find the perfect wine. Want to have more of the wine that made that date special? You can order wines directly through the app.
For those without proclivities towards math, don’t let your shortcomings distract you from your date. Download a handy (and free) tip calculator on iOS and Android. There is even a premium version that removes the small ad that appears in the app.
If you want to skip the rush and dine in:
Maybe you’d rather not wait in perfume and cologne laden lobbies for a seat and a prix-fixe somewhere. Stay in your comfy clothes and order food for you and your sweetheart with Grubhub, the stroke of local genius that allows you to get food from great restaurants without actually going out in public. We suspect lots of people will do this so make sure to get your order in early.
There’s also UberEats which can get you anything from McDonald’s to Indian, Mexican or pizza.
After you eat:
After you’ve enjoyed your romantic dinner-in, you can proceed directly to the Netflix and chill portion of the evening. Of course for that, there’s the Netflix app.
If you don’t have a Netflix subscription, and find yourself without the funds necessary to get one, there are always free viewing alternatives. Crackle allows you watch for free, only having to suffer through occasional ads. Similarly, there is the free Pluto TV with over 100 channels of free viewing, no subscription or account required.
Fun games to play with your loved one:
If you find that your evening has been going well, and you want a way to break the ice, you can try the Happy Couple love quiz. Find out new and interesting things about your partner. Whether you’re a new couple breaking the ice or if you’ve been with your partner for over 30 years, Happy Couple adapts its questions. The app requires you to create an account, but it’s free.
If you find your evening going especially well, Kindu is like Happy Couple but with a sexy twist. It’s good for couples who may be shy about expressing their sexual desires, or for couples to try out new things they didn’t know they want. Like Happy Couple, you have to create a free account.
For those couples who aren’t shy about expressing their desires, there is the iKamasutra app by Sutra apps. iKamasutra has over 100 sexual positions in 9 categories with the ability to choose them at random with a shake of your phone. You can even track your progress through the Kamasutra by keeping track of the ones you’ve tried. There is a free and premium version, and both are available on iOS and Android.
If you find yourself single on Valentine’s Day:
If you’re single and you’d rather not be, there’s a whole lot of dating apps out there you can try. One we find interesting is Badoo, which makes you go through a fairly rigorous verification process to make sure you are who you say you are and helps ensure you’re not on the hook with a catfish. There’s also Tinder, because there always is, and Match.com if you’re not the swipe right type.
We hope you had fun with our Valentine’s Day app round-up, and maybe even found something useful for today and beyond. Happy Valentine’s Day from 3CR!
Contributing author: Marielle Shaw