Even the cost of living can’t keep Victoria couples from celebrating love this Valentine’s Day.
Chocolat & Co. on Fort Street had a steady line-up out the door Tuesday, with people finding a special valentine’s treat.
There may have been thoughts heading into valentines week that the rate of inflation would cause more spending restraint, but staff at the downtown Victoria chocolatier told CHEK News the complete opposite seems to be true.
“We’ve noticed people are just as generous as always,” said Jason Lawrence with Chocolat & Co.
“Maybe between holidays folks are pinching their pennies, but when it comes to the holidays, folks still want to show that love, show that appreciation, and get all those gifts for people.”
B.C. residents usually spend an average of $129.43 on Valentine’s Day gifts, the most of any province in Canada, according to a time2play survey.
However, Lawrence says he notices customers are changing their buying habits. He finds while big, fancy heart-shaped chocolate boxes are still trendy, more people are opting for smaller, more affordable boxes.
“[Monday] we had a lady come in for 30 packages of five [chocolates],” explained Lawrence.
Yet, the spending doesn’t end at chocolates.
Annette Smith at Brown’s The Florist says Tuesday was extremely busy, noting staff were making bouquets throughout the day to keep up with demand.
Smith, the florist’s office manager, says there was an increase in walk-in customers this year and hundreds of pre-orders made.
“We took orders right up until [Monday],” Smith explained. “So we pushed it as far as we could.”
She adds that customer and order numbers are passing pre-pandemic levels, making the store busier than ever.
“I think people are just really celebrating all different kinds of love,” said Smith. “Whether it’s friendship love, love or whatever kind of love it is, they’re celebrating.”