How much does it really cost to go to prom in 2013 and how can we lower the cost?

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Prom season is in full swing, and millions of teens around the country are gearing up to attend their proms. This all-American rite of passage is an event that is present on the minds of high school students from the moment they begin freshman year. It marks the end of an era, the beginning of adulthood. But prom costs have gotten quite pricey over the years, and they can easily spiral out of control. However, with some careful planning and some creativity, prom costs can be kept lower than the average.

The average cost for the entire night, from ticket to wardrobe to accessories to transportation, is already in the $1,000 range, though it varies greatly from region to region. In some cases, parents pay for all the expenses; in others, parents and teens split the costs, and in some, the high school students themselves pay for everything. No matter who is paying for Prom 2013, the cost can continue to climb if careful budgeting, planning and research are not done ahead of time.

Creating a budget before beginning to spend for prom night is one way to try to keep costs in control. While the price of the ticket is beyond the control of the students, the other costs can all be managed. The budget should include the price of the ticket, the price of the wardrobe, including accessories and preparation, the price of transportation and any other incidentals that might occur.

Girls can save money on dresses by borrowing one from a relative or friend, by renting one or by going retro and finding one in a thrift shop. Crafty girls can even remake thrift shop dresses to fit them better. With dresses costing around $250 or more on average, a thrift store, borrowed or rented dress can save a lot of money.

Accessories and preparations can also add to the costs. Again, using accessories that the student already has or borrowing some can help to keep within budget. Doing hair, make-up and nails at home can also save a lot of money. Mothers and other relatives or friends can help the student prepare at home, by doing her hair, nails and make-up and even make a party out of it if a few girls who are going to the dance get together.

High school dances can be very memorable affairs. They just do not have to be insanely costly ones.

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