Valentine’s Day 2021 isn’t canceled but the romantic holiday is being celebrated differently this year.
Amid the coronavirus pandemic and with many states operating with dining restrictions, more couples will stay home on what in past years has been a popular night to dine out.
According to a survey of 3,100 consumers by Numerator, one in five plan to go out for food and drinks on Valentine’s Day compared to 54% in 2020. The only areas that saw increases in the survey were “cook at home” and “order takeout/food delivery.”
The National Retail Federation’s annual survey had similar results and found only 24% are planning on an evening out and 46% are avoiding in-person gatherings.
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Valentine’s Day scams 2021:Beware phony romances, fake shopping offers
Fancy dining and casual restaurants alike are offering special menus and deals for dining in and take out. Plus, you can eat your heart out with heart-shaped treats and meals.
Valentine’s Day freebies and specials
The following deals are available Sunday unless otherwise noted at participating locations. Some require an app and most are while supplies last. Offers can vary by franchise, so check with your closest location before heading out.
Auntie Anne’s: Through Sunday, Pretzel Perks app users can save $5 on a bucket of Original Pretzel Nuggets, Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Nuggets or Mini Pretzel Dogs, available for delivery or pick up.
Bertucci’s: The chain has a $40 Dinner for Two Valentine’s Day package through Sunday, available for dine-in, takeout and delivery.
BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse: Through Sunday, get a Valentine’s Day Bundle for $59.95 via take out and delivery, which includes a choice of two entrees, one appetizer and a Pizookie for dessert.
Black Bear Diner: The chain has “Weekend of Love” specials Sunday.
Bonefish Grill: The restaurant has limited-time specials through Monday including a filet and lobster pairing.
Boston Market: All kids under 12 get a free cookie, brownie, slice of cake or pie while supplies last Sunday, no purchase necessary. The chain also is giving away free dessert with every purchase.
BurgerFi: You’ve heard of “put a ring on it,” but what about put an onion ring on it? On Sunday for in-store orders, add an onion ring to any burger or side for $1.
The Capital Grille: The chain has a three-course takeout dinner for two Sunday.
Carrabba’s Italian Grill: Through Sunday, Carrabba’s has a four-course dinner for two for $50.
Chili’s Grill & Bar: For Valentine’s Day, Chili’s has a two for $25, which includes an appetizer, two full-sized entrees and a dessert. Through Feb. 28, get the February Margarita of the Month, The Grand Romance margarita for $5.
Chuck E. Cheese: Buy two large one-topping pizzas and get a free gift, a 9-inch Chuck E. Cheese or Helen Henny plush toy. This offer is for dine-in and carry-out only.
Cinnabon: Through Sunday, get a bundle starting at $15 for delivery with two classic rolls and two cold brew iced coffees. All first-time Cinnabon orders on DoorDash will receive free delivery on an order throughout February.
The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf: The chain has a buy-one-get-one deal Sunday from 2 p.m. to close for latte and ice blended drinks.
Corner Bakery: Members of the eClub and rewards program get a buy-one-get-one free entree Sunday.
Coupons.com: Get a free Trident single pack Sunday with a rebate offer from Coupons.com. On the app, tap the free Trident offer and redeem your cash back by sending in your receipt. The app will give $1.29 back with proof of purchase.
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit: For a limited time, get two Two Meat Plates for $24.
D’Angelo Grilled Sandwiches: Get two medium sandwiches for $14 Saturday and Sunday with code 8728.
Fatburger/Buffalo’s Express: The company’s 54 co-branded restaurants have a two-day deal Sunday. With any purchase, get a six-piece order of Chick’n Vings by mentioning the promotion in restaurants or using code VDAY21 online.
Firehouse Subs: The chain is offering rewards members a free dessert Sunday when they enter promo code LOVE in the Firehouse Subs app.
Friendly’s: The chain says it has a buy-one-get-one free sundae deal Sunday.
Hooters: Shred a picture of your ex at participating Hooters’ locations or online at www.hooters.com/ShredYourEx and get 10 free boneless wings with the purchase of 10 wings Sunday. Those who participate online will receive a digital coupon for the deal.
Huddle House: Through Monday, get a buy-one-get-one free Stuffed French Toast Platter with the purchase of two beverages. The offer is available at all locations nationwide.
IHOP: Through Feb. 28, there is no delivery fee with Uber Eats IHOP orders of $15 or more. Another promotion is 20% off your first IHOP order placed on the restaurant’s website with promo code IHOP20.
Juice It Up!: Loyalty members get buy-one-get-one Classic Smoothies through the brand’s mobile app Sunday.
Kolache Factory: Get a buy-one-get-one free deal on Kolaches Sunday with a coupon the company says will be posted on its website.
Marble Slab Creamery: Slab Happy Rewards members get a free small ice cream with the purchase of a regular or best value ice cream with a reward offer on the app through Monday.
McAlister’s Deli: The chain’s annual Valentine’s Day Kids Eat Free promotion with up to two free kids meals for kids 12 and under with an adult entree purchase. For the online offer, use promo code BEMINE21.
McDonald’s: Through Sunday, get free delivery on McDelivery on Uber Eats on orders $20 or more. Taxes and a service fee apply. Also find offers at restaurants through the McDonald’s app.
Mellow Mushroom: Get the Shroom Love Box pizza kit at participating locations with the ingredients to make a Mellow Mushroom pepperoni pizza. The kit is available for take out or online orders for $9.95.
Moe’s Southwest Grill: Moe Reward members receive a buy-one-get-one entrée free deal to use through Sunday. To get this deal, members had to sign up by 1 a.m. ET Friday.
Morton’s The Steakhouse: Through Sunday, a three-course Steak & Lobster menu for two, plus a bottle of wine is $169.
Natural Grocers: The grocery store chain’s Npower members get a free Chocolove Chocolate Bar Sunday.
Ninety Nine Restaurant & Pub: Valentine’s Day specials are available for dining in or to go.
O’Charley’s Restaurant + Bar: The chain has a special, limited-time menu including an appetizer and two entrees for $39. There also are Valentine’s Day-themed beverages including The Cupid’s Cocktail, a strawberry margarita for $5.99.
Olive Garden: The chain has a Valentine’s Dinner for 2 To Go for $35.99 and a Bake at Home Lasagna Bundle that serves four starting at $39.99.
Pancheros Mexican Grill: Get free delivery Sunday on orders placed through the Pancheros app or website.
P.F. Chang’s: The chain has a prix-fixe menu through Monday with appetizer, soup, entree, dessert and bubbly. There’s also a “special surprise” for in-restaurant reservations.
Philadelphia Cheesecake Crumble/Ibotta: Through Sunday, try the new Philadelphia item for free after a rebate from Ibotta while supplies last at participating grocery stores. The suggested retail price is $3.99. Learn more about saving with Ibotta here.
Pieology: Get a Sweetheart bundle deal on signature pizzas and cookies through Monday. Order two pizzas and two cookies for $22 and the special deal for singles is a pizza and cookie for $11. Pricing may vary.
Postmates: Get 10% cashback on all Postmates deliveries exclusively available through RetailMeNot through Feb. 28.
Potbelly: This deal is for singles who are Potbelly Perks members. On Sunday, there’s a “Free Cookie Perk” on the app. But the restaurant says this deal can only be redeemed by its single Perks members in-shop or only “simply by ordering solo.” Potbelly says it is “not responsible for arguments that may arise from pretending you’re single.”
Pretzelmaker: App members get $2.14 off any purchase of $10 or more Sunday in-store or online.
Qdoba: New and existing rewards members get an offer for a free entrée with the purchase of any entrée Sunday in-restaurant, online or through the restaurant’s app.
Round Table Pizza: Through Feb. 20, get 14% off your entire order with code LOVE14. Some locations are offering heart-shaped pizzas.
Slice: First-time customers get $3 off orders of $15 or more with promo code 3VDAY21 on the app Sunday.
Smokey Bones: Get the “Bone Fire Bundle of Love” Sunday, dine-in only, for $75.
Smoothie King: Through Feb. 20, get free delivery with a $10 online purchase on the chain’s website or app.
Starbucks: Through Sunday, there are no delivery fees on Starbucks Delivers orders $15 or more placed on Uber Eats Sunday and customers get 50% off their Starbucks-Uber Eats order, up to a maximum of $10 off, by using the code SENDLOVE.
Stewart’s Shops: Get 50-cent single scoop ice cream cones Sunday.
Tijuana Flats: Loyalty members get $1 dessert with the purchase of an adult entrée Sunday. Limit one dessert per transaction.
Tim Hortons: U.S. customers can get a free donut with the purchase of any size beverage by ordering through the Tim Hortons app or online at participating locations.
Twin Peaks: Through Sunday, corporate locations have drink deals including a $5 Sex on the Beach.
White Castle: Get free delivery on White Castle Uber Eats orders of $20 or more Sunday.
The Wing Experience: The chain has a “Bundle of Love” Sunday with 12 boneless wings, 12 bone-in wings, a side of crinkle fries and a slice of chocolate cake for $40.
Yard House: Purchase a 64-ounce growler of their love’s favorite beer that comes complete with a customizable “Beer Mine” Valentine’s hang tag Saturday and Sunday.
Follow USA TODAY reporter Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko