According to findings, Singaporeans are among the biggest spenders on Valentine's Day, with 60% of Singaporeans indicating that they would spend between $100 and $500 during the season leading up to the holiday.
In the United States, about 190 million Valentine's Day cards are sent each year. And that figure does not include the hundreds of millions of cards school children exchange.
In recent years, Romania has also started celebrating Valentine's Day. It is commonly observed on February 24.
But not so fast! In the Eastern (Greek) Orthodox church there is another Saint who protects people who are in love, Hyacinth of Caesarea, celebrated in the feast day 3 July.
In Brazil, the Dia dos Namorados (lit. "Lovers' Day", or "Boyfriends'/Girlfriends' Day") is celebrated on June 12.
In Iran, the Sepandarmazgan, or Esfandegan, is a festival where people express love towards their mothers and wives, and it is also a celebration of earth in ancient Persian culture. That’s a national holiday on 17 February.
In Israel, the Jewish tradition of Tu B'Av has been revived and transformed into the Jewish equivalent of Valentine's Day. It is celebrated on the 15th day of the month of Av (usually in late August).
In the 1980s the Japanese National Confectionery Industry Association launched a successful campaign to make March 14 a "reply day", where men are expected to return the favor to those who gave them chocolates on Valentine's Day, calling it White Day for the color of the chocolates being offered. A previous failed attempt to popularize this celebration had been done by a marshmallow manufacturer who wanted men to return marshmallows to women…enough said. Although we wish we did PR for a marshmallow manufacturer.
In South Korea, women give chocolate to men on February 14, and men give non-chocolate candy to women on March 14 (White Day). On April 14 (Black Day), those who did not receive anything on 14 February or March go to a Chinese-Korean restaurant to eat black noodles (jajangmyeon) and lament their 'single life'. Wow!
In Saudi Arabia, in 2002 and 2008, religious police banned the sale of all Valentine's Day items, telling shop workers to remove any red items, because the day is considered a Christian holiday. This ban has created a black market for roses and wrapping paper. In 2012 the religious police arrested more than 140 Muslims for celebrating the holiday, and confiscated all red roses from flower shops. Muslims are not allowed to celebrate the holiday, and non-Muslims can celebrate only behind closed doors.
In 2014, religious police in Saudi Arabia arrested five men for celebrating St. Valentine's Day "in the company" of six women. The Buraidah criminal court pronounced sentences totaling 32 years of imprisonment and 4,500 lashes to the men.
Oh, and in 2015, on Valentine’s Day, the movie of Fifty Shades of Grey is released.
This is just proof that international PR needs a delicate hand.