Toronto, ON – March 31, 2015 – A new national survey released today by Visa Canada shows that Canadians are holding the purse strings a little tighter this coming prom season. Canadian households with teenagers plan on spending an average of $508 this year on prom, compared to $804 last year. Parents with teenage daughters plan to spend more ($424) than those with teenage sons ($278), and moms overall are far freer with their funds, planning to spend $588 compared to dads ($431). Canadian parents are also shifting the costs to their kids slightly more, shelling out for 76 per cent of their children’s prom costs, compared to 81 per cent last year.
To help make prom a teachable moment, Visa Canada is offering a free smartphone app aimed at prom-going teens. Plan’it Prom allows users to make a realistic, detailed prom budget and then helps them stick to that budget by allowing them to track their spending as they shop. Plan’it Prom is available in the iTunes App Store, Google Play www.practicalmoneyskills.ca/prom2015.
“It’s good to see that Canadian families are being conscious of their spending,” said Carla Hindman, Visa Canada’s Director of Financial Education. “Prom is absolutely a special occasion for teens, but it’s also a great chance for parents to share a valuable financial lesson before their kids go off to college or university.”
The survey, conducted separately in the United States during the same time period, found that Americans are spending far more on prom plans, with an intended spend of $919 USD. Contrary to Canadians, American dads are the bigger spenders. They plan to spend $1160 USD, compared to American moms who plan to spend $710 USD.
The survey also demonstrates that the ‘promposal’ trend – a public prom invitation modelled on a marriage proposal – is a far bigger deal south of the border. Thirty-five per cent of Canadian families with teens reported no plans to spend any money on a promposal, and the remaining 65 per cent only planned to spend an average of $151. In the United States, however, households with teens plan to spend more than double, $324 USD, on a promposal.
“Spending that much money just to invite your date is impractical,” said Hindman. “There may be a better way to spend those dollars; in fact there are lots of ways to cut costs without sacrificing the fun of prom. The Plan’it Promapp can help teens maximize their memories without breaking the bank.”
Check out Plan’it Prom to help save on the cost of the big night, with tips like this:
- The Favourite – Focus on investing in one desired item and spend frugally on other items.
- The Makeup and Hair – Join forces with a talented friend to do hair and makeup for free.
- The Outfit – Shop early and shop often! Knowing prices and watching for sales can help teens find a great deal – and savvy shoppers can score amazing finds at consignment and thrift shops.
- The Transportation – Split the cost of a limo with friends or research untraditional transportation like renting a bus.
To download a high resolution image of Visa Canada’s prom spending infographic, please click here: http://www.practicalmoneyskills.ca/prom2015