How to Propose

Tips for Popping the Question

For most men (and women) proposing marriage is a nerve-wracking event, but it doesn't have to be. These tips can help you plan a proposal she'll never forget. Keep in mind there is no "right" way to propose; it's a personal and special moment unique to every couple.

  1. Discuss marriage first: Marriage shouldn't be rushed into; it's a life-long commitment that requires serious discussion with your partner. Only when both partners are ready to take the "next step" should a proposal be considered.
  1. Buy the ring: The engagement ring (and later the wedding ring) will be worn by the bride for the rest of her life. Don't settle on the first ring you see. Look for that "perfect" ring you'll know she'll love. Ask the salesperson's help in choosing a quality diamond and ring setting. Not sure of her style? Consider proposing without the ring and go shopping for it afterwards together.
  2. Insure the ring: An engagement ring is usually a very expensive purchase. Don't leave things to chance. Should the ring be lost or stolen insurance will cover the cost of replacement.
  3. Ask her father's permission: this wedding tradition dates to the days when a woman had no rights of her own; her father had full authority over whom and when she married. He accepted or declined proposals as he saw fit. Today most men ask the father's permission as a gesture of respect only.
  4. Keep it a secret: As hard as it may be try not to tell anyone about your plans to propose. The less people you tell the less likely the bride is to find out. Unless of course you don't want to surprise her!
  5. Plan the "big moment": the proposal is one of those memories she'll cherish forever. Therefore, this "once in a lifetime" moment should be planned as befitting its significance. Don't feel as though you have to top other proposal stories. Not every woman expects her proposal in skywriting! Instead, choose a place or time with special meaning for both of you. Was your first date at the beach? It could make a great proposal location. Does she love Halloween? Consider carving "Will you marry me" into a pumpkin and hiding the ring inside as a "treat". However you propose keep it simple and personal; the best proposals are those that focus on why you are proposing rather than the how or when.
  6. Have a back-up plan: Fate has a way of interfering when you want things to go "just right". As it's impossible to foresee how your proposal will unfold always have a back-up plan in place. Then it's just a matter of trying again!
  7. Celebrate: Once she accepts spread the good news and celebrate! Make the most this moment for all it's worth.
Advertiser Links for Engagement Rings [what's this?]