8 tips on how to be a good prom date, because it’s not all about remembering flowers

Prom is coming up soon for many students, and it can be a little nerve-wracking to think about how the big night is going to go. You’ve got your amazing outfit, your appointments are all made, your plans are set, and you even have a date lined up — you’re basically ready for the best prom night ever. Now the only thing left to think about is how to be a good prom date…no, a great prom date.

You want to have a good time at prom, and you should also want your date to have a good time too. After all, if they’re miserable, how can you really have party without a care in the world? Whether you’re going with a friend, a serious boyfriend or girlfriend, your crush, or someone kind of random, you should be focusing on how you’re affecting their night. You probably wouldn’t appreciate having a date who kind of manages to ruin prom night with their behavior, so you also want to make sure you’re not doing that to them.

Of course, you should focus on your own fun during prom night, but it’s always better to be considerate than to be totally selfish. There are a few easy ways you can come off as the best date ever — and maybe even score a few more dates after the night is over.

1. Don’t let your expectations get the best of you.

More often than not, prom comes with some seriously big expectations. It’s supposed to be the most important night in your high school career, and some will even say one of the best nights of your life. That can come with a lot of pressure, but you can’t let it get to you. If you focus on just those expectations, you’ll miss all of the little stuff and you’ll probably also be a ball of anxiety…which no one really wants as their prom date. Try to relax and have a good time without letting anything ruin that.

2. Communicate a lot before the big day.

Part of being a great date is knowing what your date wants out of the big night too. Don’t just agree to go together and then never discuss prom until the night before. You also shouldn’t assume they want to go along with whatever you want to do. Discuss all of your plans together beforehand, before deciding on anything, and make sure that you’re compromising if needed. This will help eliminate nasty surprises and keep you guys on the same wavelength.

3. Have a basic plan… 

It’s always a good idea to go into prom night with a basic plan of how you want things to go. This is especially true when it comes to the logistics of the night, like transportation, what you’re doing after the prom, who you’re going with, what colors you’re both going to be wearing. You should definitely have an idea of how you want the night to go down, and you should try to follow it as much as possible to keep things less hectic than they should be.

4. …but don’t freak out if things don’t go exactly the way you want them to. 

That said, it’s important to remember that things don’t always go as planned, and prom is sometimes no exception. If you’re a Type A person who likes when things go exactly the way they want them to, this might be hard to accept. However, if you freak out if one small thing goes wrong, you’re going to freak your date out too. Make the best of any mishaps and try to maintain a positive attitude. Your date will appreciate it and, later on, so will you.

5. Remember to spend time with your friends and your date’s friends.

If your date is another student at your school in your graduating class, then remember: this isn’t just your night, it’s theirs too. As much as you may want to spend the entire time with your friend group, they want to be with their friends too. If you guys aren’t in the same group, you’ll need to make some compromises. You can do this without splitting up, and while making sure you both have a great time with all of your friends. You just need to work it out!

6. Don’t drink too much. 

Listen, we don’t encourage underage drinking, but sometimes it happens at prom. If it does and you’re drinking, please drink responsibly. First of all, you don’t want to get sick or hurt. Second, you don’t want to make the night all about your date helping you while you’re getting sick or doing something totally ridiculous. No one enjoys that!

7. Get some one-on-one time with your date.

You wanted to go to prom with this person for a reason, so remember to set aside some time for just the two of you. Yes, it’s a night to be with all of your friends from school too, so you definitely shouldn’t make this your own romantic evening, but remember to have some dances together, or just to chat and catch up with each other in a quiet corner for a few moments.

8. Tell them they look nice.

Getting ready for prom is a process for both guys and girls — you spend time looking for a great outfit, and then you put effort into your appearance. So needless to say, everyone wants to be told their work paid off. It doesn’t matter if your date is a guy or a girl — make sure to tell them they look amazing. Complimenting their dance skills isn’t a bad idea either!