Shop Smart for a Safe Prom

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Prom season is an exciting time for teenagers across the country. There is a lot to do to prepare for the big day, including picking the right attire, renting a limousine and of course finding the perfect date.

Prom Season is Big Business

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Statistic Brain pulled together some prom night statistics for 2015 and found an average of $195 was spent on a prom dress. What’s more the average cost of a limousine for four hours is $450. Visa conducted a prom spending survey in 2014 and determined the average household spends $978 on prom. That’s a lot of money spent on one night.

Unfortunately for prom goers, scammers know just how important formal dances can be and they’ll do almost anything to con them out of their money.  Better Business Bureau serving the Northwest warns about the following scams that could hinder teens from having a memorable night.

Don’t Say Yes to the Dress

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Picking the perfect formal gown is very important to teens. While you may want the latest designer dress for a fraction of the cost, beware of counterfeit gowns sold online. Often times you end up with a poorly made outfit if it even arrives at all.

If you are shopping for a dress online be sure to do your research. Check out customers reviews to find out what people are saying about the dress and the seller. But don’t just read the reviews on the sellers’ website. They could be fake. Instead do an internet search for reviews on the online store. You’re likely to find out if it is legitimate or not.

A Safe Ride May Cost You

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Limousines and party buses are the kinds of things that are rented without being seen first, which means there’s a good chance you won’t get what you paid for. Beware of being overcharged. Make sure to go over the contract and look out for any additional service charges. Ask what happens if you go over your allotted time or what type of insurance they offer.

Also, be sure to ask for photos of the outside and inside of the vehicle. You want to make sure the limo or party bus is what you are expecting. I had friends who rented a limo over the phone —hey, it was 2001 —and it ended up being a hearse with seats installed in the back, rather than an actual limousine.

Better Business Bureau wants to ensure everyone has a fun, safe and scam-free prom. To find a trusted formal dress shop and limousine operator visit