Meeting the person that you want to spend the rest of your life with is the dream of many people and one of the best ways to celebrate your love is with a beautiful wedding surrounded by your friends and family. However, first, you need to pop the big question—“Will you marry me?” But how?
Hollywood movies, social media, and romance novels are full of romantic marriage proposal ideas, and it seems like there is no shortage of creative ideas. How do you choose the one that is right for you though? Well, there are a few golden rules that you should follow to help your proposal go off without a hitch.
Propose With a Custom Scavenger Hunt
Think about how fun scavenger hunts and treasure hunts were when we were kids. The thrill of finding the next clue, of figuring out your next step, the tingling competitive spirit that you feel knowing that you are in a race against the clock – all of these sensations are a great way to build your loved one up for the big question.
Scavenger hunts can be specially designed to visit places that are meaningful to you including where you first met, had your first date, or even your first kiss! At the end of the hunt, your loved one will find you holding a ring box just waiting for them to say yes. Let’s Roam can even help you build your own custom-made scavenger hunt to make sure that this special occasion goes off flawlessly!
Marriage Proposal Tips
#1 Always be yourself.
While it may be nice to think about asking your true love to marry you somewhere exotic like on a hot air balloon over Cappadocia, this may not work so well if you are terrified of heights. None of the coolest, most romantic, or most unique marriage proposal ideas out there will work if they aren’t right for you as a couple or if you don’t feel comfortable doing them.
#2 Remember the person you are marrying.
Likewise, don’t lose sight of the person that they are. While this probably seems a bit obvious, sometimes people get so caught up in the proposal itself and try to make it big and grandiose that they don’t stop to think if that is something that the other person will actually like. If your significant other is shy, a big, public proposal is probably the right fit but if they are always the life of the party then they may end up feeling a little “meh” if you decide to do something quiet.
#3 Don’t go overboard.
When you are planning your marriage proposal, make sure that it is something that not only suits your personality but also your budget. Weddings (and engagement rings) can be extremely expensive and so it may be best to leave some of that hard-earned cash in the bank account for when the wedding planning begins and opt for something a little bit less expensive. Don’t worry though—there are tons of fun, unique, and romantic ways that you can propose to the love of your life without having to break the bank.
#4 Document the occasion.
If possible, try to get photos or videos when you pop the big question. You can use a family member with relatively decent photography skills or even hire a professional photographer (this may be necessary if you are trying to keep the proposal a big surprise and don’t want them seeing anyone familiar wandering about).
The Best Marriage Proposal Ideas for Every Kind of Couple
Below you will find some of our favorite wedding proposal ideas. These are proposals that we have been lucky enough to be on the receiving end of, heard from friends who wanted to share their own dreamy proposal stories, and watched on YouTube videos when we were searching for great proposal ideas to help give some inspiration to people in our lives.
We know how important it is to pick a proposal that works for you as a couple so we have divided the list into ideas for romantics, creatives, adventure seekers, and families.
For the Romantics
Intimate, romantic marriage proposals are a great way to focus on the importance of this once-in-a-lifetime occasion. Although you can find scores of romantic proposal ideas in magazines and movies, the best ones are the ones that come straight from the heart and speak volumes about who you are as a couple. Make sure that your marriage proposal is a new chapter in your beautiful love story rather than trying to make it into a whole different book!
The Scene of Your First Date
Sometimes, taking a walk down memory lane is the best way to remind you of all of the cherished memories you have made together. So what better place to bring out an engagement ring than on the site of your first date? Revisiting this special place lets them know that you are grateful for all of the time that you have gotten to spend together so far and that you remember the special moments in your relationship. Whether it is a romantic Italian restaurant in town, a lovely beach, or even your local movie theater, it doesn’t matter. The important thing is that they know that this spot is very special to you – just like they are.
Being near the water is incredibly calming and freeing for many people. The sound of the waves kissing the shore, the feel of the sand on your feet, and the breeze ruffling your hair and caressing your skin is a sure-fire way to make someone feel at peace. Beach proposals are very common and it is fairly obvious why. This is a great technique to use when you are on vacation and want to end the day on a super special note. It is also very easy to plan without the other person figuring out what is going on! You simply need to grab a bottle of wine and claim that you want to go watch the sunset. While you are there, you need to pick the opportune moment, and voila—the perfect beach proposal is yours!
Staring up at the stars can sometimes make us feel like we are floating into space surrounded by a dark sea of twinkling lights. There are few things that feel quite as ethereal as staring up at the night sky. Like a beach proposal, this one is fairly easy to organize and you simply need to find a night with a clear sky, grab a few camping chairs or a warm, cozy blanket and find the best spot.
If you love the idea of doing a marriage proposal while staring up at the stars but don’t live in a place where this is an easy feat (Los Angeles, New York, etc.), then head to your closest planetarium. Give them a call beforehand and ask if they are able to project words on the ceiling (you will be surprised how many will be happy to oblige!) and you have a romantic proposal that is sure to leave your loved one starry-eyed.
Just like love, Disneyland is magical. This is a place where some of our childhood dreams and fairytales come to life before our very eyes, making us see the world with the same sense of wonder and glee that we did when we were kids. As adults, it isn’t very often that we get to experience this same childlike euphoria where we get to fantasize about the past, present, and future, so doesn’t it seem like a pretty good time to ask someone to marry you?
If you want to make sure everything goes smoothly, you can even hire the services of Disney Engagement Planners who can help arrange even more special treats for your partner.
Taking a staycation is one of the best ways to escape from your normal life for a bit without having to go too far. This can also be one of the best times for marriage proposals especially if you are treating yourself to a nice, romantic dinner at that famous hotel where you have always dreamed of going. Staycations are a wonderful way to completely unwind and take the time to fully immerse yourselves in one another while reveling in the excitement of your engagement.
An Outdoor Picnic
Picnics are a lovely way to take a few steps back from our normal busy lives. Putting your favorite snacks, a bottle of wine, and a blanket is a way to remind yourself of the simple things in life and remember that these are generally the things that make us happiest. A picnic proposal is all about finding the time to pluck up the courage to say a few simple words.
An Evening at Home
Life in the 21st century sure is hectic. We often find ourselves racing from work, to the gym, to meetings, etc. and we often find ourselves just wishing that we can be at home in our pajamas with the people we love the most. While an at-home marriage proposal may be a bit more low-key than some of the other ideas on this list, it may actually be the ideal one for you and your future spouse! This could be especially great if you have just recently moved in together or bought a house together and want to take the next step in your relationship.
A Glow-in-the-Dark Proposal
A unique, and incredibly intimate, way to create your at-home wedding proposal is to write your message in glow-in-the-dark letters on your bedroom ceiling. As you climb into bed and turn off the lights, you just need to wait for them to look up. You should know your answer pretty quickly and conveniently, you are already in bed so it is the perfect time to celebrate!
While it is nice to be able to go out to a romantic restaurant, sometimes it is even better to stay at home. A personal chef can help create some of your partner’s favorite dishes with a gourmet twist leading up to the desert which will come complete with an engagement ring. The benefit of having a chef come to your house is that you are completely in control of your surroundings, unlike a restaurant where you may have to contend with screaming kids or arguing couples. Don’t forget to pay the chef the full balance before dinner so that they can duck out as soon as dessert is served so that you can have some privacy.
There is something about wineries that seem to be calming (even before you start testing the wine!). The beautiful vineyards, the smell of the earth, and the feeling like you are in the center of something special happening makes wineries a great place to propose. The wine also can be representative of the amount of hard work and dedication that needs to be put into something to create something beautiful – just like relationships! Many wineries have onsite restaurants that can range from rustic to chic so make sure that you find one that matches your own unique style.
We all know that the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach and there is certainly a reason why so many people involve eating in their proposals. Why not make it a bit more creative and spell out your message on cupcakes and make your own little word puzzle that your partner has to solve?
For the Creative Types
Nowadays, proposals are getting more and more unique as people try to find creative ways to show someone just how much they want to marry them. Thankfully, there are plenty of creative ways to propose marriage and this is one situation where the sky’s the limit (or a canvas depending on how you look at it!).
If you are looking for a big gesture that will shout out your proposal to the world, a skywriter can write the big question in the sky for everyone to see! Parks or beaches are usually a great place to do it (try not to choose a very windy day though!) where there are plenty of people around who can cheer you on as you embark on the next stage of life as an engaged couple.
Life is all about surprises and a flash mob is a fun way to surprise your significant other. All you need to do is grab some friends and loved ones that aren’t afraid of embarrassing themselves a bit to celebrate this memorable occasion. To make it extra special, try to get your partner to start dancing and then surprise them by dropping down on one knee. Make sure to have someone there nearby to record the entire thing so that you can keep this wonderful memory to look back on later.
Christmas is quickly coming upon us and what better way to celebrate the merriest of holidays than with a wedding engagement? A Christmas tree makes a great place to hide a ring. You could tie it onto one of the first ornaments that you bought as a couple or one from a memorable vacation. Or you can even get a wedding-themed ornament! No matter how you do it, a wedding proposal serves as a Christmas present that they will never forget!
Everyone loves getting fortune cookies and cracking them open as fast as possible to see what message the universe is trying to tell them! While they are usually good for a bit of a laugh, why not take it one step further and slip a marriage proposal message inside? It may take a second for them to realize that it is real and that you organized it for them and, at that moment, you can think about why you love this person so much! As the icing on the cake (er … cookie?), you then get to eat it!
Most of us have an item that we absolutely adore. Maybe it was our first stuffed animal when we were babies, a wonderful souvenir we picked up on a trip, or a memory of a fun event that we attended with our significant other. When we look at them, we are filled with warmth as we think about how much these items mean to us. You can make this even more special by using it as a prop for your marriage proposal. As they fill with nostalgia and the sight of their keepsake, you can help create a whole new wonderful memory to add to the collection.
If you really want to find a creative way to capture the moment, why not organize a photoshoot where you surprise your significant other with life-changing words while the photographer is busy snapping away? This way you can be sure to have a lasting memory of the occasion. As an added bonus, the pictures will make a great addition to your engagement announcement or you can even display them at your wedding!
Another fun way to incorporate photography into your proposal is to ask your partner to marry you in a photo booth! If you time it right, the booth will catch a series of pictures showing surprise, happiness, laughter, and excitement. The photos will always serve as a reminder of this happy moment and can make great takeaway gifts at your wedding! The great thing about a photo booth proposal is a great way to easily organize a surprise proposal – you simply need to scope out a booth ahead of time and convince your partner how fun it will be to go inside! These photos also make great little things to post on social media to show the world that you are engaged in a cute and fun-filled way!
If your partner is a puzzle lover, a personalized puzzle could be the ultimate way to ask the burning question. If you want to be really creative (and slightly cheesy!), you can even use a photo of the two of you with a conversation bubble saying Will you marry me? You can then hide that part of the puzzle until the very end for the ultimate romantic surprise. Although this sounds complicated, it is actually much easier than it looks. You simply need to upload a photo onto Canva, edit it to add the text, and then pay a company to create a photo puzzle for you. Depending on how big the puzzle is, it may take a while to finish but isn’t that all part of the fun?
Crossword puzzles can be easily customized to reflect your unique love story with a wedding theme thrown in. This is great for people who love the challenge of crossword puzzles and can be equally as fun for the proposer who gets to watch their loved ones solve each clue until they get the final piece of the puzzle and realize that it was meant for them all along. When he or she looks up, you can have the ring all ready to go for them and your new life begins!
Sometimes, nothing puts the message any more clear than spelling it out on a T-shirt. Sure, it is a little cheesy but it certainly is cute and memorable! There are plenty of places where you can get customized t-shirts made and you can be as creative as you want with this. If you want to make it a group effort and get some friends and family involved, each person can have a different word (or even a different letter if you want to go really big!) and then slowly spell out the message. This can also easily be incorporated into a flash mob for a proposal that is sure to razzle-dazzle your loved one!
Your Own Musical
Broadway musicals almost inevitably have a love ballad (even Avenue Q, which was about puppets, even managed to have a long song) so if your partner loves musicals, writing your own song and performing it is a great way to show that you are on board with as many Broadway musicals as he or she can throw at you in the future.
No longer the realm of soccer moms, scrapbooks are an amazing way to document some of the most memorable parts of your life using photos, memoirs, and more. A marriage proposal scrapbook is a wonderful way to showcase all of the great times that you have had together. As your partner looks through it page by page, they will take a walk down memory lane until they get to the last page where they will find the ring and your proposal message. Don’t forget to keep a few blank pages at the end where you can add photos of the special moment, engagement announcements, and more!
Caricatures are a whimsical way to remember an occasion and can be a wonderful way to propose. Caricaturists can be found in cities across the United States and for a few extra bucks, many of them will be willing to add conversation bubbles into your picture. When they finally do the big reveal of your portrait, your loved one will most likely be quite surprised to see it, then will probably wonder if it is a joke, and then finally give you their happy answer.
There is something extremely calming about watching marine life as they glide through the water in front of you and a trip to your nearby aquarium can be relaxing, thought-provoking, and meditative. This is an excellent place to surprise your partner with a marriage proposal. Make sure to call the aquarium ahead of time to see when divers will be in the tanks and ask if they would be willing to hold up a sign for you. Then you just need to time it right and suddenly, you have a wedding proposal that he or she will always remember (and so will most of the other people in the aquarium, including the divers!).
When it comes to creative marriage proposal ideas, don’t forget about your four-legged friends! Cats and dogs (and whatever other little critters you may happen to have at home) can be great ways to let your loved one know that you want to marry them (admittedly, they likely won’t realize that they are doing it). Simply tie the ring onto your cat or dog’s collar and send them on their merry way. When your partner stops to say hello, they will notice something different. Make sure that you keep an eye on your pets when the ring is attached or you may end up with a Marley and Me moment rather than a romantic evening.
Favorite Movie Scene
If your partner absolutely adores movies and television shows, why not recreate one of the most famous scenes? Whether it be the oh-so-cute ending of The Proposal or the moment where Belle finally sees the prince that was hiding in plain sight, there is nothing that can’t be done with a little imagination! While it may seem silly to you, it may mean a lot to your partner and honestly, that is what marriage is all about right?
For the Adventure Seekers
If you and your partner love going on a new adventure, there are plenty of great ways to incorporate this into our marriage proposal. Outdoor proposals are a great way to incorporate your love of nature and your love for one another whether you do it at the base of a waterfall or the top of the Grand Canyon!
Meanwhile, urban exploration and train journeys can also create opportunities for an amazing proposal. From quirky cafes in foreign countries to charming small towns that look like they are straight out of a movie set, there are so many great places that you may even find it difficult to choose which is the most meaningful one for you.
There is something quite energizing about standing next to a powerful waterfall. It is a reminder of the power of nature, the purification of water, and the beauty that surrounds us and it reminds us of the role that we play on this wonderful planet. It is not difficult to see why many people let their emotions get swept away by the water and get engaged at waterfalls. Waterfalls make a great place for an engagement thanks to the picture-perfect setting and the symbolism that they represent.
Ferris wheels fill many of us with childlike excitement. From the thrill of rising up into the sky to the awe of seeing the world around you, Ferris wheels are a great way to get a new perspective on everything, so why not choose this for the big moment? Just imagine, as you reach the top you ask a question that will change your life forever. You start the ride with a girlfriend or boyfriend and finish with a fiance. It definitely changes your perspective a bit!
Most major cities in the US have at least one skyscraper where you can go to get a great view of the city down below. If you love the idea of a marriage proposal where you feel like you have the world at your feet, then head up to your nearest observation deck and say the words that your partner has been waiting to hear! If you don’t think of this as being romantic enough, just take a quick look back at Sleepless in Seattle for some inspiration!
Ice Skating Rink
Winter is upon us which means ice skating rinks are popping up all over the place. Taking a swirl around on the ice is fun for people of all ages and is a great way to get over the mid-winter blues. It may even be a fantastic place to propose, especially if there is an announcement system that you can use to broadcast your question. We promise that the whole rink will be there cheering you on!
Like rollercoasters, life is full of ups and downs and they can sometimes seem like a pretty apt metaphor for life. Since many of the biggest coasters around the United States now have cameras located along the track to capture the look of glee or terror on the face of riders, you can use this as an ideal moment to ask your partner to marry you – without them knowing! You simply need to have a sign up and ready when the camera snaps and then make sure that you stop and see your photos when you are exiting the ride. This is probably going to be one of those times when you decide to buy the pictures!
Hot Air Balloons Ride
If you love the idea of proposing while you are surrounded by a spectacular view, a sunrise hot air balloon ride may be able to provide the perfect setting for a romantic and adrenaline-pumping proposal. The heat of the engine and the chill of the morning air provides a delightful juxtaposition for your senses and as you continue to ascend, you may begin to even feel like you are leaving all the cares in the world behind. As long as neither of you is scared of heights, your heightened awareness of everything happening around you can create a feeling of euphoria that will be heightened by the thrill of an engagement. And since most balloon rides also include a glass of champagne at the end, you can begin celebrating as soon as you descend!
High Ropes Course
High ropes courses are specially designed to get people out of their comfort zone, challenge themselves, and discover how much they can actually achieve. This little burst of confidence sounds like exactly what you need when you are about to change your life forever, doesn’t it? Knowing that you accomplished something like a high ropes course together as a couple helps to solidify the feeling of being part of a team and being able to face whatever life throws at you. This could be a great time to ask the love of your life to marry you, knowing that you will face life’s challenges together!
Epic Train Journey
Sometimes, there is nothing more exciting than getting on a long-distance overnight train ride. The thrill of getting on the train in one place, going to sleep, and then waking up somewhere completely years gives a nod to the yesteryears of travel and lets us remember what traveling used to be like before we even crammed into a flying tube like sardines. You can find some pretty epic, and luxurious, train journeys throughout North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia which could be the perfect place to move forward together in your new life as an engaged couple!
America’s National Parks
In the United States, we are blessed with miles upon miles of magnificent natural scenery, much of which is protected by national parks. There is so much to see and do in these parks that you could easily spend weeks doing a road trip through just the American southwest! If you and your partner love nothing more than lacing up your hiking boots and getting out on the trails or spending a night camping out under the stars, then a wedding proposal in a national park may just be the place for you! If you need some advice or guidance on some of the best parks to visit, head over to this guide to the best national parks in the United States.
If you don’t live close to a national park, head out to your closest state park or local hiking trail. You don’t need to be in the middle of Yosemite to get all the benefits of Mother Nature. She truly is all around us ready to remind us just how precious life is when we spend it with people we love!
The Trip of a Lifetime
Has your loved one always fantasized about spending a week in Paris? Or visiting the Taj Mahal? Or hiking through Patagonia? Why not incorporate your marriage proposal with a surprise trip to his or her dream destination? Many hotels around the world will be happy to arrange a room full of rose petals, a romantic dinner, or a special gift (we are all romantics at heart, aren’t we?) to help you set the mood so why not make your dream vacation part of your proposal story?
Don’t forget – if you are simply too excited to hold it in, you can always ask on your flight if you can use the intercom system to propose to your partner. Not only is it super romantic for your partner, but it is also a feel-good moment for pretty much everyone else on board. And, who knows, maybe you will score an upgrade to first-class or a few glasses of champagne!
A Surprise Vacation
Over the past few years, surprise vacations have risen in popularity as more and more people have discovered the many benefits of putting your vacation plans solely in the hands of an expert. Different surprise travel agencies focus on different types of vacations so it is important to try and find the right one for you but once you do, your travel agent can make sure that your trip includes all the little touches that will make the marriage proposal even more magical.
To learn more about surprise vacations and how they work, make sure to check out this piece on surprise travel agencies. This article explains how surprise trips work, who they are right for, and some of the most well-reputed agencies in the United States specializing in surprise vacations.
There is nothing better in life than getting a second chance at love and sometimes this involves creating blended families. While not everyone may be on board initially with the idea of becoming one large family, incorporating the whole gang during a marriage proposal can already put the roots in place to make everyone feel like they are already on the same team. This strategy does have a few challenges and pitfalls so make sure that you think deeply about whether or not you want the kids involved in this important decision and do what you think is best for you and your family.
If your family is a big fan of game nights, why not create your own game where there is one goal – to ask the love of your life to marry you! You can incorporate games like Pictionary, or Charades using a wedding theme or you can even design your own game boards of some of the world’s most popular games like Monopoly or Scrabble. Get the kids involved from the very beginning so that they can share in the excitement – don’t worry about someone spilling the beans too soon. The important thing is that everyone feels like they are part of this next big step.
Family Trivia Night
Trivia nights are great fun for people of all ages and could be an interesting way for the young and young at heart to show off their knowledge. As the game goes on, the questions can get more and more tailored to your partner and the early days of your relationship. As they begin to realize that this isn’t your normal, run-of-the-mill trivia game, you can ask the burning question or get the kids to help you.
So … Are You in the Mood for Love?
We hope that this list has given you inspiration for your upcoming marriage proposal. This is a wonderful time and we wish you all the best. Just remember, don’t stress too much about making it perfect. There is no right or wrong way to propose and every situation is unique. As long as you keep in mind the three golden rules listed at the top, then you are sure to pick a hit!