The high price of prom is not translating into quality

May 30, 2018 — by Francesca Chu

Junior Ronit Dey woke up the day after junior prom to excruciating stomach pains. He was one of several students who reported feeling ill, presumably from the food that was served, after a night at the Roaring Twenties-themed prom held on April 28 at Club Auto Sport in San Jose.

Whether food poisoning actually occurred at the venue or whether students were feeling ill for other reasons, it can be agreed that the quality of food was not the best, especially for the hefty ticket price of $175 — not to mention that prices were raised $10 each week before the dance to a potential maximum price of $215.

There is no reason for prom tickets to cost that much. Simply put, students attending our proms are too often being ripped off.

The cost of the venue, catering and activities like the games and photobooth shouldn’t have added up to too much money since the tickets for Lincoln High School’s senior prom, which was also held at Club Auto Sport, cost only $90 at its lowest price. Lincoln High School is closer to the venue, so transportation would cost less; however, that shouldn’t raise the cost of tickets by $85.

The high prices wouldn’t be as big of a problem if the quality of the event met the expectations set by the price. The cost of catering per person was $88, which could account for the difference in ticket prices from Lincoln High’s prom. Students were promised delicious food and an upscale venue to make up for the high ticket prices; however, it was clear as the night went on that students did not get their money’s worth.

First, the food wasn’t available right away, and for the first 30 minutes or so, most students were just standing or walking around waiting to eat.

When the food finally did come, it tasted simply mediocre. The sliders, mac and cheese, chicken tacos and salad were unsatisfactory. The dessert and fruit were decent but weren’t brought out until much later. Catering shouldn’t have resulted in the unreasonably high ticket prices that the junior class paid, and most students would probably be happy with something cheaper like pizza and fries.

Senior prom tickets for the Exploratorium in San Francisco are even more expensive, starting at $185. It is true that it’s extremely hard work to organize and figure out costs for prom, but with dress or tuxedo purchases, the $25 for a corsage and boutonniere set and the photo prices, prom spending is now often running to around $300 for just one person.

However, instead of only complaining, students should work to come up with solutions for following years. They should be more active in deciding things like venue, food and activities for prom. With everyone discussing their opinion, students will hopefully be able to come to a ticket price that isn’t too high but still translates to an amazing prom experience.

In the case of junior prom, it seemed like many students didn’t get their money’s worth. Hopefully, senior prom won’t make students regret the void in their wallets.


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