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Budgeting

Intro to Budget


The Cost of Things

This "Budget" section contains a breakdown of the main items you need to pay for, whether as the girl, as the guy, or together. Some are customary, and therefore necessary. Some you can do without and the world will not end. Also, it used to be that certain things, like the prom tickets, or transportation, were always paid for by the guy. But this has changed in recent years because the belief now is that the cost has gotten just way too expensive for the guy to handle alone, and so the new custom is to pay this cost together. I'm not entirely convinced that this new custom is good for the girl, and I think that we should take a few minutes to examine it in some detail to understand why.

It all starts with a question that has been troubling many of you: who pays if he asks, who pays if she asks? If he asks, it's usually understood that he'll be paying for the night--prom bid, limo, etc. But if the girl asks, it's no longer so clear who's paying, and too often these days the girl thinks, or feels, that she should pay, or that she should at least split the cost.

Well, I don't happen to think that she should pay, or she should split the cost, even if she does the asking.

Consider: What does it really mean to say he's paying for it all? You probably think: saying he's paying for everything on prom night, means he's paying for the prom bid, dinner, transportation, partying, and anything else that's going to be part of your prom, right? Well, yes. But also no, because, is that really everything that's necessary for prom night?

It all starts with a question that has been troubling many of you: who pays if he asks, who pays if she asks? If he asks, it's usually understood that he'll be paying for the night--prom bid, limo, etc. But if the girl asks, it's no longer so clear who's paying, and too often these days the girl thinks, or feels, that she should pay, or that she should at least split the cost.

I mean, who's paying for your dress? Who's paying for your hairdo, and makeover, and accessories, and a dozen other little things the total cost of which is bound to add up? Not him, obviously (unless you're the luckiest girl in the world!).

So in other words, even when you think he's paying it all, he's still not paying for it all. And what's worse, if you add up what he pays for--prom bid, transport, his own tux, etc.--it's still often less than what you yourself pay for your dress, hair, etc.

Prom expenses tend to break down into the stuff you need for your personal appearance, and then everything else, namely, the cost of the evening. If you want to hear a roundabout dollar figure for who pays what, this is it: the stuff you need will probably average around $500, and everything else, not including his tux, dinner, and corsage, will probably average around $400. Whoa!

Whoa! because it means that if you pay for half the night, you are paying $200 in addition to the $500 you already spent getting ready for prom. If you're paying for the whole night, then you're paying $400 in addition to the $500, or $900 total. And what's he paying, if you got the night covered? His tux, maybe dinner, and the corsage, for an average total of $200.

Let me repeat all this: If you pay the night as well as your personal stuff, and if he only pays his personal stuff as well as dinner (which sometimes you can do without), then you're paying on average $900 and he's paying on average $200. And it's supposed to be the other way around!

I don't know how things got so screwy, or how come nobody seems to have noticed. I don't even know what's the best solution. So my recommendation is this: try, try as hard as you can, to make him understand what the real cost of going to prom is to you, and try to convince him to at least pay for the cost of the night itself. Remind him that you're already paying for your dress, hair, etc., and that it would be really unfair if you also had to pay for the whole evening. Really unfair.



You will find more detailed information on budgetting in the other pages in this section, but here is a set of sample budgets for the cost of the different aspects of prom night. They're broken down in such a way that you can see the difference in who pays for what.


Her Sample Budget
  • Gown            : $225
  • Shoes            : $32
  • Gloves           :$21
  • Purse             : $32
  • Hose             : $4
  • Bra               : $21
  • Hair              : $85
  • Manicure      : $26
  • Wax & tan    : $70
  • Boutonniere  : $11
  • Total            :$527




His Sample Budget
  • Tuxedo           : $110
  • Corsage         : $28
  • Dinner            : $65
  • Total              : $203



Prom Sample Budget


  • Bid (2)          : $185
  • Pictures         : $28
  • Shared Limo  : $65
  • Post Prom     : $203
  • Total            : $405

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