U.S. shoppers will still buy traditional favorites even though they plan to spend 17 percent less this Valentines, according to survey by BIGresearch for the National Retail Federation.

A bad economy won't stop Cupid this Valentine's Day, but it might slow him down, said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. This year more than ever, consumers will look for creative and inexpensive ways to show those they love how much they mean to them.

A poll of 8,850 consumers in early January showed that shoppers plan to spend an average $102.50 on Valentine's gifts, down from last year's $122.98 per person.

In spite of lower bleaker conditions, popular traditions will not be disappearing anytime soon. Almost half of those surveyed said they would still take their Valentine out for dinner, while one-third intends to buy flowers.

Good news for retailers will be in greeting card sales. About 58 percent said they would send greeting cards, up from 56.8 percent last year.

However, total Valentine's Day spending is expected to be about $14.7 billion, down 13.6 percent from the $17 billion spent last year.

The 35-44 year old age group will spend the most this year with the average person planning to shell out $119.19.

Young adults 18-24 will be the second biggest spenders at an average of $113.68 per person, followed by 45-54 year olds ($108.82), 25-34 year olds ($105.59), and 55-64 year olds ($83.76).