How to Get a Prom Date Immediately (Not Clickbait)


Photo by Anna Walls

Exemplifying a successful promposal, Zach Sealover asks Emily Hlas to prom while on the band & choir spring break trip.

Beloved readers, I’m back with yet another piece of groundbreaking journalism. Today, I’m here to discuss a phenomenon – no, the phenomenon – affecting high school students across the nation. That’s right: prom season. For some unfortunate few, prom is one of the best nights of their likely unfulfilling lives. But for those of us who don’t intend on peaking in high school, prom can seem like a bit of a hassle. Dropping hundreds of dollars of my parents’ hard-earned money on one night seems ridiculous enough, but worse yet it’s generally expected I show up with a date. Luckily for you, I’ve formulated a foolproof guide to finding and securing the best date possible, and by the end of this article, you’ll either have a prom date or an irreparable sense of loneliness. Only time will tell which of the two will prevail.

Survey your options

Whether you’re a four-sport burnout, a Harvard-bound loser, a theater nerd, or some unholy combination of all of the aforementioned, there’s bound to be a suitable (and convenient) date worthy of your time. Be honest with yourself – there has to be someone you’d fancy a dance with. If you’re looking to court a local, it’s getting down to the wire, so you have a good three days before everyone’s paired off. You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone as is, so now is the time for action. That girl from your Stats class that doesn’t know your name but let you borrow her notes once? She’s clearly begging to be asked. Shoot your shot, and if it doesn’t go well, just remember that rejection is nothing more than an excuse to shock your followers with some killer subtweets. Love is temporary, but Twitter fame is forever.

Narrow your prospects

Once the girl from Stats blocks you, you can get serious about finding the right date. Remember the episode of Friends where Ross makes pro/con lists to choose between Rachel and Julie? Replicate this exactly, except for the part where Ross gets caught. If you can get your list down to two or three, it’s much easier to compare and contrast. Don’t see it as demeaning, because this phase is strictly business. The person that ends up with the most pros and the fewest cons is generally going to be the ideal candidate, but every situation is different. For example, if “frequently suggests joint application to The Brethren” is the only drawback, all I’m saying is know what you’re getting yourself into. Or, learn from my mistakes and screen for eccentric religious affiliations earlier in the process.

Background check

It might be a good idea to ensure your future date is even looking for a date before you ask – the guy that’s been dating your sister since 8th grade might already have plans. As might the girl clinging to the shattered remnants of her long-distance relationship with Dylan from Kappa Sigma (he’s moved on, Sophie. Why can’t you?). If you’re pretty sure the person you’re after is available, it might be helpful to assess whether or not you can spend an entire night with them. I don’t think I need to elaborate – find someone whose company you enthusiastically tolerate. Nobody wants to be all dressed up with nowhere fun to be.

Pop the question

No, not that one. The “how” of your promposal will differ depending on who you ask. Some people make boards, others do it over text – it honestly doesn’t matter unless you think your chances of snagging a date will fluctuate based on how you ask. If you know your potential date really well, you can probably determine their preference, and if you don’t, chances are they have friends that know.

Accept their reaction and re-evaluate

Rejection sucks, but it’s a risk you run with this kind of thing. Don’t spend too much time wallowing if the girl/guy you asked says no. Will everyone hear about it? Probably, but will anyone remember it by next week? Doubtful. You can always ask someone else, including equally dateless friends, people from other schools, or recently graduated alumni. If all else fails, bring an underclassman – they’re desperate and meek, and it’s unlikely they’ll say no without good reason. Another option? Go solo; after three or four years of high school, you deserve a night of supervised fun, and if that means rocking it out on your own, then that’s how it is. I hope I’ve been of assistance, because I know how stressful this time of year can be. At the end of the day, it’s just one night – make it yours.