December 2012 archive

The Price of Commitment: What People Spend on Engagements

We ran across an interesting article below from LearnVest written by Libby Kane about the Price of Commitment so it’s only right we share this with our readers.

It’s proposal season–and we’re not talking about business proposals.

We’re referring to sparkly-ring marriage proposals. And according to TheKnot, December is the most popular month for said engagements.

Of course, much like the actual ring, not all marriage proposals look exactly alike. Some have marching bands! Some have flash mobs! Some are completely devoid of witnesses–and some prefer it that way.

If you plan to propose this holiday season, as an early engagement gift to you, we’ve looked into the costs of some of the most elaborate proposals out there–as well as the best post-proposal financial practices.

What People Are Spending on … the Ring

It’s an age-old question, complete with a handful of inexact estimates floating around the Internet as to how much you should shell out for the ring: two months worth of salary, 25% of your annual income, $2,500.

Fact-wise, reports that the average cost of an engagement ring is $5,200–and it takes the average person three months to find the right one.

The truth is that there isn’t a hard-and-fast rule as to how much a person should pay for a ring, just like there isn’t a rule about how much people are expected to spend on wedding presents.

In other words, it’s less about what you should spend, and more about what you can afford to pay.

“It’s really important to budget for an engagement ring,” advises LearnVest CFP ® Sophia Bera. “Don’t use all of your savings to buy it–your emergency savings should be separate from your ring savings.”

Translation: The ideal amount to spend on a ring is different for everyone–and it doesn’t necessarily need to be something that you take on alone. ”Maybe this is unromantic, but I think it’s important to talk to your significant other about what they want, and the price range they have in mind,” adds Sophia.

Perhaps it isn’t so unromantic: TheKnot also reports that 65% of brides have at least some say in their engagement rings, while 31% shopped for and/or purchased the ring with their groom.

In some cases, the ring is only a blip on the proposal budget–a new trend in over-the-top proposals means that the ring isn’t always the sparkliest part of the moment.

What People Are Spending On . . . the Proposal

You’ve probably seen videos of some pretty incredible will-you-marry-me asks: From a marching band in midtown Manhattan to a song-and-dance routine on a suburban street in Portland, Oregon, some people go all-out to utter those four simple words.

For instance, The New York Times looked further into the flash-mob proposal of 43-year-old David Centner, who proposed to his girlfriend in July of 2012–in front of a crowd of people dancing to “I’m All Yours” by Jay Sean.

Sure, the memories are priceless, but the event? It cost over $7,300!

The marching band in Midtown, which required 140 instrument-wielding high schoolers bussed in from the suburbs, cost about $7,000–not including flying in relatives to witness the show this past June.

Of course, not everyone spends thousands of dollars on this one moment. But are people spending more on proposals, in general?

According to proposal planner Michele Velazquez of The Heart Bandits, the answer is yes. “In the past, most people proposed in a restaurant, at home or just in a pretty setting–there were no photos, there was no hoopla,” she says. “Now, our clients generally spend between $500 and $3,000 on a proposal.”

Why such fuss? “‘How did they propose?’ is one of the first questions everyone is asked when they announce their engagement,” Velazquez explains, ”so the story needs to be special.”

But if you aren’t planning to shell out thousands to ask the question, don’t worry–you’re in the majority. In a 2012 survey conducted by TheKnot and Men’s Health, 99% of men surveyed said that they didn’t use a proposal consultant, and 72% said that their proposals weren’t documented through photo or video.

This doesn’t mean that the proposal wasn’t special: Among women surveyed, 29% said that their proposals happened at a place that had meaning (like the location of their first date), and 47% said that the surprise factor was “very important.”

So They Said Yes … Now What?

“People are spending more money on the proposal because they’re putting more into its uniqueness and sincerity,” explains Kailen Rosenberg, relationship expert and founder of Kai-len Love and Life Architects. ”But they are spending less on the wedding. We’re seeing more people who are doing elaborate proposals, and then eloping or having small weddings.”

Okay, maybe not that small: According to TheKnot, among engaged couples who didn’t plan the wedding themselves, the average cost of the big day in 2011 was about $27,000.

Given this not-so-modest figure, couples need to keep in mind that there’s another big day that’s just as important: The day you and your partner open up about your finances.

“If you haven’t talked about finances with your significant other, you are not ready to get engaged,” says Sophia. “A lot of couples haven’t talked about the amount of credit card debt or student loans that they have, but these things will definitely play a role when you combine your finances.”

We know having the “money talk” isn’t easy—it’s hard just to look at your own bank balance sometimes. But you’ll need to work as a team for the rest of your lives, so getting off on the right foot today will help set you up for financially happy ever after.


Holiday Party Recap: ABC NJ North/Central, ISES NJ North & MPI NJ

It was such a pleasure being the Photo Booth sponsor for the ABC NJ North/Central, ISES NJ North and MPI New Jersey Holiday party last week at the MetLife Stadium, where some of the proceeds were donated to the NJ Sandy Relief Fund. Lots of talented vendors were present including VeroLuce Photography, Absolute Media Productions, Video Game Parties, AHG Creative Wine Glass Charms, Classic Party Rentals,  Adam Leffel Productions and many more to make the party more FUN & MEMORABLE! This was a RARE opportunity for guests to set foot on the home field of not one but TWO NFL teams and the future hosting site of the Superbowl XLVIII. Check out our FAVORITE pictures from the event and our Royal Photo Booth logo in bright lights in the Stadium, picture courtesy of VeroLuce Photography.

If you’d like to work together with us, feel free to CONTACT US to learn more and  see how we can help make your clients events UNFORGETTABLE! Feel free to email us at or call us at 646.363.6749.


Making Your Corporate Event FUN

There are many corporations that can afford a corporate party planner, dropping thousands of dollars just to have someone do the work for them. Other corporations are looking to save money, and will ask one of their employees to plan their corporate event for them.

There are lots of aspects you should consider if you are trying to put together a Corporate Event. You need to be sure that you take all of these different aspects into consideration, as they will determine how successful  your party will turn out. As we work with many Corporations during this Holiday Season and help make their events more FUN & MEMORABLE, these are the key essentials of making your next Corporate Event a BIG SUCCESS!


The first thing that you are going to want to think about when planning a corporate event is of course your guests. If this is a small event, you can simply think about the people that you work with and gauge their personalities. If it is a large corporation you need to dig deeper, looking into the culture of the company and corporation to better understand the mentality and personality of those who will be attending. You want to make sure that the entertainment matches the crowd – a mismatch creates an awkward and uncomfortable environment.


It is also important for you to consider the vibe of the event. Does the event revolve around a charity or specific celebration, certain types of entertainment would be considered in poor taste. If the event is a holiday celebration for a corporation, however, the mood is lighter. Which opens up a world of possibilities for your NY Holiday Party.


There are plenty of different things that you can do at a corporate event that would be considered FUN. You simply need to make sure that whatever you choose is appropriate for a corporate and professional setting. A PERFECT example is getting a Photo Booth for your event. A photo booth for events is a great way to create bonding between coworkers without forcing awkward icebreakers or awkward interactions. An event photo booth is simply one of the many ideas that would be perfect for a corporate event. If you add Props to the Photo Booth, it is even better! You want guests to be interactive and entertained!

It can be difficult for many to plan a Corporate Party. Many people find it difficult to find a balance between having fun and being professional. You simply need to think about your workplace as a whole and the leadership of that workplace. You will be able to get a strong feel for what is appropriate during your event. NY Photo Booth rentals are almost always appropriate because this allows your colleagues to joke around and have fun in an appropriate way. This is how you have to think of your event – find the things that you can do that will be FUN & MEMORABLE, and yet professional and appropriate.

Royal Photo Booth has LIMITED dates available for your Holiday Party in NY or NJ. Be your company hero and book your photobooth with us TODAY!