Prom Spending


From all the Facebook posts I’ve been seeing, Prom Season is here.

It’s always fun to read the Visa Prom Report:

FOSTER CITY, Calif., April 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Spending on the annual high school ritual of the prom continues to outpace inflation and grew for the second straight year, hitting an average of $1,139 per family in 2013, results from a new survey released today by Visa Inc. show. That represents an increase of 5% from the $1,078 that American families who have a teenager attending a prom spent on all aspects of the dance in 2012.

Full Disclosure:  I didn’t go to either my Jr. Prom or my Sr. Prom.  I’m a geek and I know it.

That said, $1,139 is an ENORMOUS amount of money to spend on one night.  And that’s only each HAL of the date.  I’m assuming the other half spends the same!  That makes the one night date a $2,278 affair.


But this is what caught my eye:

One troubling statistic is that parents surveyed who fell in the lower income brackets (less than $50,000 a year) plan to spend more than the national average, $1,245, while parents who make over $50,000 will spend an average of $1,129.

What the what?

But that’s not all:

Additionally, single parents plan to spend $1,563, almost double the amount that married parents plan to spend at $770.

Why would single parents spend more on a Prom than married parents?  And given that single parent households are disproportionately less wealthy, what does that say about the decision making of single parent households?

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