Valentine’s Day a business opportunity for students

In the cities of Can Tho and Danang there is an abundance of flower and souvenir stalls around colleges and universities during Valentine’s Day.

Often, the owners of these stalls are students, who would rather make money instead of making a date.

Flower stalls in Danang

One group of friends, including Thu Ha, Kieu Trinh and two others, opened a stall in front of Phan Chu Trinh High School, trying to catch eyes with their colourful wares for the lovers’ day.

Ha said “Nowadays, young people prefer unique romantic gifts. Therefore, we have to search designs of gift boxes, flower baskets and heart-shaped chocolates on the internet for several months before Valentine’s Day. We paid attention to the designs that have been popular in foreign countries, then we select those which will be most suitable to sell here. It takes a bit of creativity. We also started buying our supplies early, because the price goes up as the holiday approaches.”

When asked why she chose to make money instead of love on this special day, one vendor said, “My boyfriend and I run the business together. This year will be a very special memory for us.” Some girls and boys actually become business partners, temporarily posing as couples to attract customers.

The prices are very cheap, ranging between VND35,000 (USD1.69) and VND120,000 (USD5.79) each. A basket of fresh flowers might cost around VND40,000 (USD1.93), depending on the type and arrangement.

For some students this can even be a lesson in their major.

Thu Nguyet, a student at Danang Economics University persuaded her parents to lend her money to buy various products, then cooperated with two classmates for their business venture. They designed and carried out promotion campaign aimed at friends and acquaintances. Two thirds of the products were sold as of February 13.

Nguyet said that she is happy for this opportunity, even though the spot she wanted to use had already been taken by another group. She said that next time she’d try for a better place.

In Can Tho, on February 13, streets like Nguyen Trai, Hoa Binh, Mau Than, Ly Tu Trong and Tran Hung Dao were littered with temporary flower shops. The road opposite Can Tho University was filled with flower colour.

While arranging bunches of flower, Nuong said, “The Tet atmosphere is still around and Valentine’s Day makes it more exciting. We have carefully selected roses for lovers.”

Hoang, another student-vendor, said, “This is the second year I’ve roses for Valentine’s day. I buy them from wholesalers, then cut and arrange them myself to earn some money for tuition fees.”

Students catch the entrepreneurial spirit

Months of preparation reap a handsome reward

Kieu Trinh and his friend are not lovers, but hope to appear so

Carefully arranged roses

A reasonable priced flower basket

Bus stops are a popular place to set up shop

Heart-shaped pillows are always popular


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