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How to save on prom? First of all, prom is a veritable rite of passage for American teens. Therefore, some of them begin looking forward to prom night in their elementary school years. This is a special night when boys don tuxes or high-quality suits and girls dress up in gorgeous evening gowns. To do prom “right”, you generally need to have limo transportation, a pre-prom dinner at a gourmet restaurant and after-prom party plans with your date or friends. This may carry on until sunrise.
If you have started preparing for prom, you may understandably be shocked at how expensive it can be to pull off the perfect prom experience. In fact, the national average prom cost in the United States is $1,139 per person. This, of course, comes when parents and teens may already be saving every penny for graduation and college expenses that are just down the road. Understandably, you want to know how to save on prom. There are a few steps you can take to reduce your prom expenses, but you may still need to allocate a healthy sum of money for the ideal prom experience.
Prom Night Will Be Cheaper If You…
Whether you have a date for prom or you are going stag, you need to budget properly for this major expense. You may still need to plan spending at least $300 to $500 or more on prom. However, you can stay well below the national average when you incorporate all of these ideas into the perfect prom experience. Here’s how to do it.
1. Choose Your Promposal Idea With Care
The “promposal” has become almost as elaborate and important as a marriage proposal. Therefore, focusing on this aspect is important when you want to know how to save on prom. Some promposals are so elaborate that they cost hundreds of dollars to execute. Even so, you must remember this. The reality is that many people are simply honored to be asked to prom. Their response is not necessarily tied to how elaborate and expensive your promposal is. You may consider exploring the Internet for affordable yet creative promposal ideas. Keep it creative, romantic and within the budget! Speaking of which…
2. Create a Prom Budget
As soon as you are asked to prom or decide to go with a group of friends, begin making your plans. This enables you to start shopping around, create a budget and start saving as early as possible. Talk to your date or friends about what they want their prom experience to be like. This will give you a starting point for researching costs and finalizing your budget.
Keep in mind you also need to include your personal items, such as prom attire, flowers, makeup and more in your budget. When you want to know how to save on prom, your budget gives you an excellent resource to draw from when planning your night. If you want, you can always use an app to stay on top of your budget.
3. Read Menus Online Before Choosing a Pre-Prom Dinner Location
Going out to dinner before prom is a traditional part of the total experience. Because it can be expensive, it is a focal point when you want to know how to save on prom. In small communities, you may only have one prime location to dine at. However, most teens have access to several or even dozens of great restaurants.
First, choose restaurants that accept reservations. The last thing you want is to have your dinner extend for hours into the actual prom event because you cannot get seated within a reasonable period of time. Then, read online menus to get an idea
Then, read online menus to get an idea of what the total cost of the meal may be. Meal prices can vary substantially, and this step can help you to save money. Do not overlook the extra expenses of taxes and gratuity when budgeting for your meal out with friends. Many restaurants will charge a 20 percent gratuity automatically to the bill with large groups.
4. Let Mom and Dad Take the Photos
Because prom is a milestone event, some people will hire a professional photographer to document the occasion. Most professional photographers charge a set fee for their time capturing the images. Also, there is an additional fee to purchase the photos. Ultimately, hiring a professional photographer for prom can cost several hundred dollars in most cases. Instead, let your parents or even neighbors with a nice camera snap the pictures for you.
5. Make Your Own Flowers
Flowers are often overlooked until the last minute. Even so, they are a part of the tradition you must plan for. More than that, they can be pricey. Girls generally receive corsages, and boys receive boutonnieres. You can order these from most florists in your area, or you can save money and make them yourself. Research the process online, and ask your parents for help if needed. They typically need to be made the evening before prom and refrigerated so that the flowers remain fresh.
6. Ask a Friend to Do Your Hair
Many girls head to the salon before prom to get the full glamor treatment. However, this can cost a couple hundred dollars in some cases. Some girls will even spend the whole day at the salon getting a facial, as well as hair, nails, and makeup. If you want to know how to save on prom, skip this step. Ask a talented friend or neighbor to do your hair and even your makeup for you.
7. Look for Savings on Prom Attire
Prom dresses are an essential part of prom for girls. But they can easily cost a few hundred dollars. When you want to know how to save on prom, you may be able to get a sales price on a beautiful dress.
You can also look at second-hand shops. Most prom dresses are only worn for a few hours. Therefore, most second-hand prom dresses are usually in like-new condition. Also, they are available at a fraction of the cost.
Borrow shoes and accessories from mom, a big sister or a neighbor to save additional money. Boys likewise can compare prices and special offers at various tux shops in town to find the best deal possible on their attire.
8. Ask Everyone to Chip in for the Limo
Some people will drive their own cars to the venue when they want to know how to save money on prom. Your parents may even let you drive their nicer cars for this special occasion. If you insist on traveling together and want a limo, shop around for the best price possible. Consider the benefit of extending limo service through the after-party event as well. Pool several friends together so that the cost can be split evenly between everyone.
9. Attend the School-Sponsored After-Party
There is a wide range of after-party plans that are common for high school teens to make. For example, some will rent a few hotel rooms and let the party rage on for hours. Some parents may offer to host an elaborate party in their home.
Such efforts can be expensive, and you may be able to save money by attending the school-sponsored event. Most schools offer a free post-prom party that sometimes extends until morning. This is generally an alcohol and drug-free event that is chaperoned. In this way, your parents can feel relaxed about this money-saving option.
You and your date could easily spend a thousand dollars or more on prom. This is simply an unreasonable amount of money. You do not necessarily have to sacrifice on various aspects of the prom experience to enjoy the perfect evening with your date and friends. If you want to know how to save on prom, act on these helpful tips today to enjoy the prom night of your dreams on a dime.