Preparing for prom is a costly operation. If you are on a tight budget, for whatever reason, it’s not always easy to rein in your spending.
Prom essentials e.g your outfit can often cost a few hundred dollars. The thing is, you don’t want to end up looking cheap so ideally, you need to stick to a budget while still buying something that looks great.
Here is how you can save some cash on prom essentials:
No 1: Buy or rent a used outfit/dress
Perhaps the biggest expense when preparing for prom is your outfit. It should look formal, glam and polished so it makes sense to buy something from a known brand, which can be costly.
The alternative is settling for something cheap and low quality from a Chinese factory that you are probably going to regret later. One compromise is to rent a branded prom dress or buy a used outfit.
Guys can also rent their tuxedos and suits as there are many places out there that offer this option.
Most places rent outfits anywhere from $40-100 on average. This way, you’ll dramatically trim down the cost without resorting into something cheap-looking.
No 2: Buy everything a few months in advance on a discount season
You may think it’s too early to buy an outfit, shoes and/or accessories 3 months in advance, but this is a trick that will save you more money (and time) instead of shopping at the last minute.
The first reason is, you’ll have more time to search for better deals for your buck and find something really nice and the second is that every 3-4 months there is a discount season e.g on January, April and July. This applies to both regular and online stores so better take advantage of it before it’s too late.
Buying ahead of time is a big tip to save money and lower the stress levels.
No 3: Borrow accessories from a friend or a relative
Although accessories come secondary, they are still necessary for completing your outfit and their cost often adds up spoiling your tight budget.
If you don’t want to spare much on jewellery, bags, ties, or other accessories, a good idea can be to ask a relative or a friend to lend you their accessories for prom.
Everyone, even your parents have some classic pieces in their wardrobe that look glam and timeless–no need to buy something fancy and expensive that you are only going to wear once or twice.
No 4: Do your own make-up and hair
Girls have double expenses when it comes to prom prep because they have to appear in a nice formal hairstyle and all made-up.
Although an expert hairstylist or makeup artist has the skills to make you look your best, you can do your own makeup and hairstyle with a bit of practice–rehearse at least once or twice to find your ideal look and use what you have already to get dolled up.
The Internet is full of make-up and hair tutorials for formal occasions so watch these to get specific ideas and techniques so you can follow them yourself–or ask a beauty-savvy friend with a steady hand to help you out.
No 5: Use your parent’s or a friend’s car
Everyone likes to feel like VIPs in a luxury limo but something extra like this can blow your prom budget by at least 20%, especially if you are sharing the limo rent with fewer than 6 people.
If your parent’s or friend’s parents car is in a good and presentable condition, use that instead.
Your parents will be glad to drive you there and be part of the fun–unless you want’ to avoid them. Go with your date or at least one of your friends so you don’t feel alone and there you go.
Another alternative is to rent/use your school bus with your whole class. This will only cost you a couple of bucks and you’ll feel more excited as you all together on the road to your prom venue.
No 6: Get the flowers from your garden or from a grocery store
Flowers may be one of your least important expenses but if your school or tradition is to carry flowers instead of buying a $20+ flower bouquet from your local florist, take flowers in various colors from your own garden or if you don’t have, go to your local grocery store and buy 5-6 flowers from the flower section which will cost you less than $2 for each.
A nice simple ribbon or colored paper will be enough to tie them around. Road florists also have great deals in some spots if you look around.
The Last Word
The most important thing on Prom night is to have fun with your friends.
Whatever you can do to save a few dollars here or there can go a long way to increasing your enjoyment of the night.