While watching the news tonight with my husband they had a segment about prom and the associated costs. With me being (almost) 30, prom wasn’t that long ago for me but I was shocked at the numbers they provided. The average prom costs for Canadian kids was approximately $850 with parents covering an average of 81% of these costs. American kids spent more with an average of almost $1,100 in 2014. Wow.
According to the article this included everything from formal wear, flowers, meals, tickets to event(s), rentals etc. Even with all this in consideration I was still blown away. When I graduated I don’t think I spent a quarter of that, even at over 10 years ago that’s a huge increase. Here are a few ways you (or your kids!) can save money on prom costs:
I borrowed my prom dress from a friend who had graduated two years prior and it worked out perfectly. Her uncle was a seamstress and custom-made her dress which I only had to mildly alter. Because it was custom, it was a sure way to make sure no one else had my dress (not that I would have cared). If you know someone who you could borrow a dress or tux from, this would be the cheapest option.
The dress is usually worn once, it sort of goes without saying that checking out online classifieds might be a good idea.
Use something other than a limo
We opted to rent a large SUV at a fraction of the cost. We had a ton of fun decorating the entire thing with window paints, streamers and crazy decorations. Also, what happened to borrowing mom and dads car??
Look for deals
I found an online Groupon type coupon to have m hair and makeup done. My only tip for this would be if you’re using a service like this for an important day, check out reviews! The place I used was terrible and I ended up redoing my own makeup. Larger department stores also often offer these types of services for free or very cheap.
My husband and I (yes, we’re high school sweethearts) volunteered on the safe grad committee so we would get free tickets to prom and safe grad (the after party). If I remember correctly they ran $50 each. Not bad for a few hours worth of volunteering!
Prom is a fun time but spending upwards of thousands of dollars is just crazy. Just 10 years ago an expensive dress was $250, now kids are spending $500+ on a prom dress. Parents, it’s important to hold your kids to task. If they want a crazy expensive day make sure they contribute to the cost, you should be responsible for 81% of the cost, especially in these dollars!
How did you, or do you plan to save on prom or you or your kids?