Wedding proposals are one of the most personal things ever. What resonates with you or your future spouse is going to be completely different for another couple. But there are some tried and true proposal ideas that will definitely cause a universal “Awwww!”
Whether you’re looking to propose or you just want to take a wedding planning break and gush over somebody else’s, there are some amazing proposal ideas in the gallery, above!
Want to show off your proposal photo? Tag us on Instagram for the chance to be featured!
From coffee mugs and Cracker Jack boxes to Scrabble games and adorable puppies, there are so many unique and fun proposal ideas out there that it’s hard to choose our favorites. But we did! While you might not love all of these, hopefully they can at least spark an idea if you’re looking for a different way to ask. And, if you’re currently waiting on the love of your life to pop the question, this gallery will definitely cause you to do a bit of daydreaming.
RELATED: Nervous? That’s totally normal! Take a deep breath and read our guidebook on how to propose.
10 More Tried and True Proposal Ideas
Say you go through the gallery above and nothing strikes your fancy. Well, we’ve seen A LOT of proposal ideas over the years, so we’ve created a quick guide with 10 more of our favorites, below. These proposal ideas are usually easy to put together and don’t require a ton of planning if you’re short on time. Here’s a few of our favorites:
Who needs an excuse for a quick vacation? We do! We love proposals that involve taking a trip somewhere, because it’s a place you can return to for future holidays and relive the special moment. What better place to propose in the winter than on top of a ski lift surrounded by mountains, snow, and trees? Looking for summer proposal ideas? Book a trip to a beach resort and plan a sunset proposal on the sand.
Dinner at Home
Instead of making reservations and proposing in front of a crowd, opt for a candlelit dinner at home. Prepare a special meal yourself or even consider hiring a chef!
Looking for proposal ideas that involves your partner’s besties? Allenbrooke Farms‘ Stephanie Allen recommends teaming up with your partner’s best friends to plan a GNO that you’ll eventually crash. “Aside from your soon-to-be fiancé, there’s no one that knows you better than your best friends. So why not enlist their help to ensure he/she is set up for a successful surprise!” Allen says.
“Coordinate with your partner’s best friends for a spa day and indulge in a fresh mani (because of course if you’re going to show off a new ring, no one wants chipped nails!). You can then finish the day with a delicious dinner and cocktails to celebrate with your gals, until the twist of events takes place. Instead of showing up to a restaurant with all of your besties ready to dine and sip and champagne, your significant other is there at a private table to surprise you and pop the question! (Then, of course – cue, all your besties who have been hiding out at the bar to pop some champagne and celebrate with you!).”
Big Night Out
If you want proposal ideas that don’t involve staying in, The Diamond Reserve‘s Kaeleigh Testwuide recommends going all out. “Book a one night stay at your city’s fanciest and most romantic hotel that has a beautiful rooftop view. Tell your significant other you will be picking them up after work to head to a romantic dinner, but instead have a black car pick the up filled with roses in the backseat! Have the driver bring them to the hotel where the concierge will then instruct them to head to the rooftop where you are waiting!” Testwuide says. “Surrounded by your cities beautiful skyline be waiting for your love’s arrival. There you can get on one knee ask the biggest question of your life ‘Will you marry me?’ Following your proposal have a dinner reservation at the hotel capped off by champagne and dessert in your room! This make for the most unforgettably romantic evening and a first class proposal!”
Simple Gift with a Ring
Instead of going overboard, surprise your S.O. by giving them a downplayed gift — think a box of chocolates, a handmade card, or a bouquet of flowers — that has a ring or something that reads “Will you marry me?” inside.
“Pop” the Question
Who doesn’t love proposal ideas with a good theme? Euri Wong, lead designer at Bloominous, suggests incorporating things that “pop” throughout the day or evening. “Do fun things like a popping balloon game and blow bubbles in crazy shapes, serve popcorn, soda pop, and popovers, play pop music,” Wong says. “At the end of the party, complete it with popping the question!”
Put those colored chalky candy hearts that seem to be everywhere on Valentine’s Day to good use. Try to get creative with the candy hearts, even if it’s just by creating a trail of them that leads to you waiting with a sign that mimics the sweet treat.
Botanica International Design Studio‘s Zoe Gallina recommends focusing on the little things no matter which proposal idea you choose. “Including details that are customized to that couple’s relationship and/or includes little things that reflect the idiosyncrasies of that person will make for an extra special proposal,” she says. “For example, you could start the day with a scavenger hunt of little notes that takes the person to locations in their city that have special meaning to them, a local coffee shop, where you had your first date, where you first kissed, etc. and you finish at the proposal destination. But because family has such a special meaning to most, after the proposal is done, you can go to a restaurant filled with their closest friends and family!”
A Day Full of Love Letters
Write a bunch of love letters ahead of time and have your partner read them throughout the day. For example, place one on their nightstand, have a co-worker deliver another, and so on. Then, at the end of their day, hand deliver the final letter that asks them to marry you!
If you and your S.O. are into fitness, pop the question on the run — literally. Jenna Miller, the creative director at Here Comes the Guide, suggests signing the two of you up for a 10K. “Not only will you get to spend lots of pre-race training time with your partner, but when you propose at the finish line you’ll both feel like winners,” Miller says. “Invite friends and family to greet you at the finish line with signs that say ‘Congratulations!’ or ‘He/She Said YES!’ It’s the perfect, built-in excuse to have all your loved ones there to watch—and photograph! —the big moment. After you’ve stepped away from the other racers, take that ring out (of the zippered pocket or compartment where it was securely hidden), get down on one knee, and finally say those four, indelible words… It will surely be a moment the two of you will never forget!”