14 Feb 2022

How to pull off a perfect proposal

It's Valentine's Day, a time of year when thoughts of love and romance inspire many of us to pop a highly significant question. But while a proposal usually evinces joy and excitement, it's also fraught with pressure. We've shared a few tips to ensure the moment is memorable for all the right reasons:

1.) Make it personal

Make your proposal personal by incorporating what matters to you both – whether it's recreating your very first date or choosing a venue or activity that has special significance to your other half. Equally, avoid anything your partner really won't enjoy: sinking to one knee at the top of the Eiffel Tower shows commitment, but it's hardly romantic if your partner is terrified of heights.

2.) Keep it private

A public proposal might seem romantic, but popping the question in front of your friends and family could also put pressure on the other person to say yes. Keeping it private will make the moment all the more special, and you can always celebrate with family and friends at your engagement party.

3.) Don't panic if the answer's no

You'll be understandably downcast if your partner turns down your proposal – but a 'not yet' is very different from a 'never'. Try to overcome feelings of disappointment and enjoy the occasion to the best of your ability. If you've bought a ring, keep it safe until the time feels right to ask again.

4.) Prepare to share the news

Before you post an engagement photo on social media, share the news individually with your family and close friends. They'll appreciate hearing about it first-hand, and their undoubted delight will make your celebrations even more special.

5.) Consider an official announcement

Engagements are traditionally announced in The Times or Telegraph, and you may wish to place a notice in a local newspaper too. Doing so might seem old-fashioned in an age of instant messaging and social media, but it gives you an official record of the event for years to come. Our exhaustive etiquette library has more information on the wording of official engagement announcements.

Looking for some help with wedding planning? From engagement parties to budgeting, wedding venues, dress, responsibilities and even the honeymoon, our comprehensive wedding planning advice is the essential companion to your special day. Explore membership options here.

 

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