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30 Ways to Save Money on Prom and be Trendy in 2019

how to save money on prom

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On an average, a family spends $900 for prom, yup…. $900 (I know this amount will take a little time to sink in).

But let’s focus on the good part: With the hacks that I’m about to share, your expenses are sure to drop down drastically.

So, read on and plan about reducing your expenses from $900 to $90.

But before we start make sure that you redeem this gift card worth $500 from Amazon for FREE!

Dress and Footwear

For Girls:

1. Make your own Dress

If you have that crafty side in you then making your own dress is the best option. Help your daughter in selecting the perfect fabric, discuss the style for the dress and embellish it on your own.

It will be a life-long memory for your daughter to cherish, along with an amazing creation which no one can copy. (Wearing the same matching dress that any other girl is wearing is a nightmare which nobody wants to see)

2. Buy or Rent (Choose Wisely)

Another tough decision that comes in play is deciding to buy a dress or will it be cheaper for you to rent it out. All you need to focus on is, make sure that your daughter is interested in wearing the purchased dress in other events as well.

If you’re buying a dress just to wear it once then it is of no use.

So, it’s better that you discuss this with your daughter first and then finalize anything later, and also you need to check out various stores before renting the dress to make sure that you get it at the cheapest value.

Look for a shop that specializes in renting formal gowns, or check to see if your local bridal shops offer rentals.

3. Borrow the Dress and Footwear 

You can check with your daughter’s friends who don’t go to the same school as she does.

And borrow the prom dress from her friends, No one has seen the dress before, and no one will ever know.

The same goes for your heels as well, you just need to fit in the right shoe size and you’re good to borrow.

4. Buy dress together with Friends

A lot many stores offer a discount when you purchase in bulk, so ask your daughters friends to go together for shopping.

This way they will not match their dresses at prom and might also end up getting huge discounts on their gowns.

5. Shop for Dress in Off-Season

It will be way better for you to plan ahead of time and shop for a dress in offseason. The prices for dresses obviously go high when they are in demand, and offseason is the time to grab good stuff at discounted rates.

You will have various options to choose from and the good stock will be up on a bargain.

6. Plan everything well in Advance

If you wait until the last minute, you’re more likely to feel desperate and buy something too expensive. So, plan everything and consider even minutest of the details.

Dust off that bridesmaid’s dress and give it another whirl. If you don’t have one, chances are you know someone who does. After all, who thought attending weddings can prove good for your teenager as well.

7. Find a Simple Dress and Embellish it Yourself

If you can’t make your own dress then buy a simple dress and embellish it yourself. This will save a lot of your money and you will end up creating something unique and beautiful which no one else owns.

For Guys:

8. Buy or Rent

I thought that guys and girls have nothing in common but I’m going to be proved wrong. As this point applies on both girls and boys, so make sure that you Buy a tux only when your son is planning to wear it again in the future.

And also compare prices between the rented one and a newly bought one, because a good tux is a rare one to find, so the prices for renting them may be even higher than a newly bought one.

9. Borrow from Friends, Brother or your Father

By this age just like my kid, if your kid too is matching up with your husband’s height then make the most of it. Even if you wear the same tux as your brother or father (which fits you well) then no one can ever know.

Having lesser options in a tux is sure turning out to be a boon for you guys. Just pick out the right shade of Blue, Brown or Classic Black and you’re good to go.

This applies the same for Footwear as well, fit in the right size guys and you’re ready for your prom. Formal shoes are the ones which are worn very less so borrowing them can prove to be a good option.

Hair and Makeup

10. Go to a Cosmetology School

Getting your makeup and hair for free from a Cosmetology school student is the best option that I can offer you.

But you need to make sure that you book an appointment well in advance because obviously other girls too might be eyeing to do the same.

11. Borrow your makeup

If you’re not able to get an appointment at a cosmetology school then borrow makeup. You can help your daughter with your own personal makeup kit and if you don’t have one then ask your own friends or your daughters’ friends.

Well, it seems to be difficult, but doing makeup on your own is not rocket science and it will help in saving Money on Makeup. So, take help from various makeup bloggers, and help your daughter with her makeup.

12. Buy your makeup

Your daughter is growing up, and is sure to get addicted to makeup, so why not buy her a makeup kit. You can check out Sally Beauty, they offer huge discounts and offers on makeup.

And also, you can register yourself on ILoveSamples and get makeup samples for FREE!

Well for this point you definitely need to check my article on How to Save Money on Makeup and make the of your money!

13. Help your Daughter with her Hairstyle

We all want to have some quality time with our kids and this can be the best opportunity for the same. Sit with your daughter, search on the internet and make a hairstyle daily till you find the perfect one for Prom day.

14. Get the Perfect Tan at home

Don’t spend a small fortune on tanning sessions; grab some self-tanning lotion at your local drugstore and fake the bake at home.

Nobody will ever get to know and you won’t go wrong like Ross (I hope your kids have seen F.R.I.E.N.D.S). You can also check out this read to get free product samples, or to buy stuff at discounted rates.

For Guys: The best thing about being a Guy is that all you have to do is take a nice good bath, set your hair while they are wet and you’re good to go.

So, no makeup tips required for your sons but make sure that they use anti-acne facewash, which you can easily buy from Sally Beauty at a discounted price.

Corsages and Boutonnieres

15. Make your own Corsages and Boutonnieres

A simple way to save Money on Prom is to follow the step by step instructions and make your own Corsages,

Step 1:

Collect all the material:

  • Flowers
  • Leaves
  • Ribbon
  • Scissor
  • Glue Gun or Thread
  • Soft Cardboard (Which you can cut from Cereal Box)

Save Money On Your Prom

Step 2:

Collect all the material together and start by cutting a small piece of soft cardboard. (As shown in the picture)

how to save money on prom

If you don’t want to go ahead with cardboard then you can also take an old elastic bracelet which you don’t wear anymore.

Step 3:

Cover and glue the entire cardboard with ribbon and glue 2 ribbons on the bottom side which will help you in tying up the corsage to hand.

how to save money on prom

Make sure that the ribbons are long, as you can always cut off the extra after you tie it down.

Step 4:

Cut the stems of the flowers and take out beautiful fresh leaves.

how to save money on prom

Start sticking the leaves and flowers together, according to the design that you have already created.

Step 5:

Let the corsage dry out properly, and shake it well to check if there are any loose flowers.

save money on prom

16. Choose less expensive flowers

Carnations are a traditional choice because they’re cheap and easy to dye in various colors. Search for cheaper options and see if your neighbor who loves gardening has any seasonal flowers to lend you.

17. Skip the fancy florist

Head to the grocery store, the selection is usually smaller, but you’re sure to find something you like.

There is a clearance of flowers almost every day, and if you visit at the right time you are sure to get your hands on the best ones.

18. Don’t buy Wrist Corsage

If you don’t have time to make corsage then don’t buy the wrist corsage, as wrist corsages are costly than the pin corsages.

Instead, buy a Boutonnieres which is commonly known as pin corsage and glue it on a ribbon and make it a wrist corsage.


19. Avoid Official Prom Pics

When you’re planning on How to Save Money on Prom, then this is the most important point that you need to take care of.

Various schools hire professional photographers who later on charge you for your pics. Don’t buy from them, as they are the costliest source of photographs.

20. Don’t hire a Professional Photographer

You must feel like you’re not that good a photographer and you must capture your kids most important day but this definitely not the reality. If you’ve got the latest model of mobile phone then it is as good as any professional camera.

I personally have taken pictures for my kids’ prom through my iPhone 8+ and they turned out to be better when compared to the professional we hired.

We wasted Hundreds of Dollars for nothing, never gonna get them back. So, it’s better for you to learn from my mistakes than making your own ones.

21. Bring Disposable camera to prom

You can buy a disposable camera for your kids, they are way cheaper and even if your kids misplace these cameras then it will not be a huge loss.

You will get good quality photographs and you will save money on prom.

22. Ask for a favor from a photographer friend

These days many kids have a hobby or passion for photography, so ask your kids if they have any photographer friend.

Your kids can take as many clicks as they want and that too for FREE!


23. Dutch in for Limo

Your kids might simply stick on the idea of renting a limo! I know how stubborn they can be, so even if you rent a limo then ask your kids to go along with friends who are ready to pay for the ride. 

24. Offer a ride to your kids

This can be the option if your kids agree to it, you’ll know they will be safe and it will cost you almost nothing.

Offer a ride to your kids and ask them to take a few friends along with them, let them enjoy this ride together.

25. Ask a friend for help

If your kids don’t want to go with you to their prom then ask your mutual friends to take your kid as well.

Going with a friend’s parents might be less embarrassing for your kids, so it’s better that you try this option as well and save money on Prom. 

26. Go for a cheaper rental car

If anything from above doesn’t work out then search out for cheaper rental cars, help your kids in getting the cheapest ride available.

Dinner and Party

Let’s come to the point which is almost as important as the dress. When it comes to ending your prom day your kids look out for a place to enjoy and have fun.

And this gets as costly as the dress, makeup, hair, photographer, and ride, well you can put every other expense together at one side and this amount to be spent in the party for all the friends might weigh heavier.

27. Have a potluck

Instead of bearing the cost of the party on one shoulder, ask your kids to have a potluck with your friends. You can help them by providing your own place or any other friends place and ask every kid to bring a dish.

This way they all will have at least one thing that they will like on the menu, and the burden won’t lie on a single person.

28. Cook a romantic dinner for Two

If your kid has a date and wants to spend the evening with them, then ask your kid to bring along his/her date at home.

They will be safe at home, and you too will not worry about them and it will be less expensive than a fancy restaurant.

29. Outdoor Picnic

If your kid is not comfortable in bringing his/her date home, then help them in finding out a safe place outside to carry on with their small picnic.

All you need is finger foods, a warm blanket and a sky full of stars. You can cook their favorite meal, and help in reducing the expenses.

30. Don’t let your kids walk in Blind to a Restaurant

Well, let’s keep a fail-safe point as well. If any of the previously mentioned points don’t work out and your kid still wants to go to a restaurant.

Then make sure that he/she does not walk in blind to a restaurant, check out the reviews on the internet and find out the cost for a meal for 2.

You kids won’t like asking for money from their date if they fall short on cash. So, it’s better to know about the place first and then walk in.

Prom List 
Paying Full Price
With my Hacks
Dress At Store- $200 – $500 DIY- $50 – $80
Makeup At Salon- $50 – $75 DIY- $10
Hair At Salon- $50 DIY- $5
Corsage and Boutonnieres At Store- $15 – $25 DIY- $5
Photos Professional- $80 – $100 Your friend’s or mom’s iPhone- $0
Food At Restaurant- $50 At Home- Meal will be on Mom and Dad
Travel Limo or Rental car- $70 – $100 Ask for a ride- $0
Summing up the Maximum Amount which can be spent: $900 $90

To Sum it Up: As promised at the start of this read, I’ve dropped down the amount of $900 to $90. Simply follow the points that I’ve mentioned and master the art of Saving Money on Prom.

You don’t have to borrow money or be under debt to spend a good day, all you have to do is enjoy this day to the fullest and click as many pictures as you can, create memories for a lifetime.


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