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Prom Spending Down [AUDIO]

Families in our region of the country may end up putting out more money than the national average, but a new survey suggests the “prom spending bubble” has burst.

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prom couple
Susan Prentice, ThinkStock

According to a Visa survey of parents across the country, the average family will end up spending $978 on high school prom this year. The projected figure is down 14 percent from last year.

Meanwhile, the teenage prom-goers themselves plan to pick up a bigger share – 44 percent – of the tab this season. The survey found parents will still foot more than half the bill.

The survey also spotted differences in pay projections based on the segment of the country, and New Jersey landed in one of the most expensive regions.

“In the northeast, an average family will spend just over $1,100 on prom still, which is above the national average,” said Nat Sillin, Visa’s head of U.S. financial education. “The coasts spend the most.”

When you add up the outfits, transportation, corsages and other expenses, Sillin said, prom still ends up being a significant financial hit for almost any family. He suggested parents set a budget with their children beforehand, and stick to it.

Visa has released a special prom budgeting app, Plan’it Prom, which features a calculator, countdown and timeline.

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