News and press releases

  • Royal Mail
    12 February 2018
    Me, Myself & I: 2.6 Million UK Adults Have Posted Themselves A Valentine’s Day Card
  • New research from Royal Mail reveals that over 22 million UK adults will send a Valentine’s Day card this year
  • 16% have sent a Valentine’s Day card to an old flame, while 1% have sent one to their pet
  • Mystery is still linked to romance as nearly half of us have received an anonymous Valentine’s Day card 
  • A quarter of people would be upset if they received a Valentine’s Day text or emoji instead of a card
  • Worcester is the Valentine’s Day card capital of the UK, followed by Leeds, York and Glasgow

Romance is far from dead in the UK with over 22 million UK adults planning to send a Valentine’s Day card this year, according to new research by Royal Mail. 

But while most of the UK tends to post a card to a significant other, 2.6 million people have put the “i” into Valentine’s by posting themselves a card - in order to appear more popular. 

Mums and dads can also be extra protective of their offspring’s feelings at this time of year. Just under a fifth (18%) of parents are preparing to post a Valentine’s Day card to their children. Over two thirds (67%) of those doing so admits it’s because they are worried their children wouldn’t otherwise receive one. 

The apple(s) of my eye

The objects of people’s affection are proving to be both wide and varied. Just under one in five people (16%) will surrender to nostalgia on February 14 and mail a Valentine’s Day card to an old flame. It would also appear that Valentine’s cards are not just for humans, with 1% of people posting Valentine’s Day greetings to their pets. 

But others are ready to keep their options open. Although over half (58%) of the population tend to post just one Valentine’s Day card a year, 13% of people have mailed cards to more than three people in a year to mark February 14. One in 10 people have also started a relationship by sending a Valentine’s Day card. 

The research also revealed that mystery is still key to romance for many of us; four in ten have posted an anonymous Valentine’s Day to a secret crush. 

You’ve got love mail

Cards continue to hold an important place in many people’s hearts and almost a quarter would be upset if they received a Valentine’s Day text or emoji instead of a card. The nation prefers to play it safe when it comes to card type. Sentimental types are the most popular (47%) but personalised (23%) and comical (23%) cards tie joint second. 

The nation is also more than ready to splash the cash this Valentine’s Day. The average person spends £22 on Valentine’s Day gifts and cards, with 3% planning to spend over £100. There’s still a place for the grand gesture it would seem, with 1% planning to spend over £250 on their paramour. 

When it comes to gender differences, it would appear that men are willing to spend more on their partners than women. Men spend an average of £28 on Valentine’s gifts and cards, while women spend a more modest £16. 

Worcester is the ‘loved up’ capital of the UK with 53% of inhabitants set to send cards this year. Leeds, York and Glasgow take second, third and fourth place. 

The top ten is as follows:

  1. Worcester
  2. Leeds
  3. York
  4. Glasgow
  5. Birmingham
  6. Gloucester
  7. Cambridge
  8. London
  9. Aberdeen
  10. Norwich 

Royal Mail spokesperson, Mark Street, said: “This research shows that written communication remains at the top of the list when it comes to matters of the heart. Taking the time to write down how you feel about someone continues to be the best way to keep the romance in your relationship alive.” 

Ends 

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Note to editors

The research was independently conducted by OnePoll and based on a nationally representative sample of 2,000 UK adults. 

About Royal Mail plc

Royal Mail plc is the parent company of Royal Mail Group Limited, the leading provider of postal and delivery services in the UK and the UK’s designated universal postal service provider. UK Parcels, International and Letters (“UKPIL”) comprises the company’s UK and international parcels and letters delivery businesses operating under the “Royal Mail” and “Parcelforce Worldwide” brands. Through the Royal Mail Core Network, the company delivers a one-price-goes-anywhere service on a range of parcels and letters products. Royal Mail has the capability to deliver to more than 29 million addresses in the UK, six days a week (excluding UK public holidays). Parcelforce Worldwide operates a separate UK network which collects and delivers express parcels. Royal Mail also owns General Logistics Systems (GLS) which operates one of the largest ground-based, deferred parcel delivery networks in Europe.