Many students have decided to go to local benefit stores in Carmel or the Goodwill shops in Monterey in order to buy their prom attire, as average overall prom expenses in California have risen to $600 this year, including transportation, clothing and tickets, according to Yahoo.
Out of 100 students polled at CHS through social media about how much they were going to be spending on their outfits alone, 59 claimed that they were going to spend at least $75.
In order to counteract prom costs, many students have agreed not to buy their dates’ tickets, which are $175 per person. Along with a reasonably priced outfit instead of one considered more luxurious for the big night, older fashion statements are becoming more popular.
Junior Ishika Patel says that her prom-advertised dress ended up being nearly $100, with an additional clearance sale applied.
“I feel like [the tickets] are way too expensive,” says Patel, even after buying her ticket ahead of time for $25 cheaper.
Tickets cover transportation to San Francisco, a four-hour experience aboard a yacht, dinner service onboard and staff wages, such as paying the DJ and chefs.
In Yahoo Style’s 2017 “Prom Across America” survey, they revealed that the average student on the West Coast spends roughly $625 with the combination of tickets, clothing, hair, makeup and transportation. Faviana public relations coordinator Kayleigh McPeck told USA Today in an interview that students look at prom attire as a sort of investment.
Despite Carmel’s reputation as an affluent community, there are a lot of students who just don’t have the money to spend on such a lavish night. Dana Donaldson is one junior who prefers to buy clothing at thrift stores, so getting a prom dress there would not be out of the ordinary for her.
“There are benefit stores in Carmel,” Donaldson says. “I bought a dress that I’m going to wear to prom for only $12. They have lots of nice dresses because it’s rich Carmel people clothes.”
Most students have decided to buy prom outfits that are specifically on sale because of the typical prices for suits and dresses advertised as being for prom. Junior Ryan Stannard, who attended prom last year, bought a full suit for around $100 because he viewed it as being something he could continue to wear for the next couple of years.
“I went to Kohl’s to get my suit because they have good prices,” Stannard says. “I actually borrowed a shirt from my dad. If you don’t [buy clothes on sale], it’s going to cost you so much money.”
Thrift store racks and clearance sales hold countless potential for the students at CHS to exploit, but are often overlooked.