Proposing to your loved one should be one of the most special days of your life (besides the wedding of course), so it’s important that it goes off without a hitch. With all that pressure, normally comes some panic – should I do something elaborate? Is it better to keep things simple? What if it all goes wrong? Don’t fret though, as we’ve rounded up some of the most romantic ways to propose to the love of your life. So, if you’re stuck for ideas on how to ask that all-important question, our guide has a little something for everyone.
Propose in a restaurant
Why: Unless you’ve managed to avoid watching romantic comedies your entire life, we’re pretty sure you’ll have seen someone proposing in a restaurant onscreen (or maybe even in real life.) In the films, the proposer normally hides the glittering ring in a dessert or a glass of Champagne, before their partner accidentally swallows it and chaos ensues.
Luckily, that type of situation doesn’t tend to happen in real life. Restaurants are a great place to propose though, especially if you take them somewhere that’s always been on their to-dine list, or maybe even to the restaurant where you enjoyed your first date. We’d suggest skipping the whole cliché ‘hiding the ring’ thing, and instead ask at the end of the meal. You could even have the restaurant write out ‘will you marry me?’ on a dessert plate.
Where to do it: A sky-high restaurant if you want dramatic views, or a fine-dining establishment if you’re looking for some old-school glamour.
READ MORE: The Best London Restaurants for proposals
Get your pets or kids to help out
Why: Ok, so the old saying goes that you should never work with animals or children, and a proposal is definitely not something that you want to go wrong. However, most people find it hard to deny the irresistible cuteness of pets and kids. If you already have a child with your partner, it will be an extra special touch to get them involved with popping the question.
If it’s a baby, you can find personalised ‘will you marry me?’ bibs online, or if the children are a little older, why not get them to design a poster asking the all-important question? (Just make sure it’s legible!) Pets can join in the fun too, with proposal pet tags – just place them on your pet’s collar and watch the shock on your other half’s face when they notice.
Where to do it: It’s best to do a proposal like this one in your own home, where the children/pets feel most safe and comfortable.
READ MORE: Check Out These Pawsome Dog-Friendly Restaurants
Organise a treasure hunt
Why: If you want to pull off an elaborate, but thoughtful proposal, a scavenger hunt could be the way to go. You can scatter clues for your partner to find around your home or across your neighbourhood, depending on how grand you want proceedings to be.
We’d recommend asking for help on this one too – have their best friend help them find the clues, or get local businesses involved (e.g. hide a clue in the bakery you always get your cakes from.) Personalising the hunt will make it extra special, so make sure to include locations where you have gone on dates, or incorporate their favourite film/book quotes into the clues.
Where to do it: If you want to play it safe, limit the hunt area to your house. If you want to go big though, you can plan a treasure hunt throughout your neighbourhood, or even across the city.
Say it with a balloon
Why: If you’re worried that your nerves might get the better of you or that you’ll fumble your words, it might be best to limit the risk and say it with a balloon instead. We love the look of this confetti balloon from Bubblegum Balloons, which is filled with helium and will float out of its box as soon as your partner opens it.
The red and pink colours are perfect for a romantic setting, and the balloon comes filled with heart-shaped confetti for an added touch of love. We’d recommend decorating the room with candles and flower petals too, to really make a statement.
Where to do it: Definitely do this one indoors – imagine the horror if you watched your proposal balloon floating away!
Somewhere with a view
Why: There’s nothing quite like standing in front of a breath-taking vista, whether it be from the balcony of a rooftop bar or looking out to the ocean from the cliff edge. How do you top that feeling of awe that comes with drinking in magnificent views? Well, you use the view as the backdrop for your proposal of course.
If your beloved has always wanted to complete a certain hiking trail, or loves to snap pictures of a city skyline, proposing somewhere with a view is a great way of indulging their interests. It also provides a great opportunity to take some stunning engagement photos, with those eye-catching views in the background.
Where to do it: The UK is full of amazing viewpoints. Try Primrose Hill in London for the city skyline, or take a trip to the Scottish Highlands if you’re after rolling hills.
READ MORE: The Best Restaurants for Views
Why: There’s nothing more fun than going on holiday with someone you’re head over heels for. Whether it’s checking out the local culture or simply making the most of the bar at your all-inclusive hotel, a holiday is always more fun when you’re there with your partner.
An exotic location is also a great place to propose, as it has a sense of occasion and your partner probably won’t expect it. Try proposing at one of the country’s famous landmarks, or opt for a quiet scenic spot.
Where to do it: Make sure you’re going somewhere that your partner has always wanted to visit. Remember, this trip is really all about them!
Recreate your first date
Why: If your first date was a runaway success (and didn’t take place at your local Nando's), then why not recreate it when you pop the question? Re-visiting the place where you first met is a thoughtful touch, and one that won’t go unnoticed by your partner.
If you’ve got a really good memory, you could even order the same food that you enjoyed on your first date, or make sure that the song you first danced to is playing in the background. This is especially well suited to people who aren’t fans of grand romantic gestures, and much prefer low-key, thoughtful ones.
Where to do it: Wherever you had your first date, duh!
Organise a fake photo shoot
Why: If you know that your partner would want to look their absolute best when being proposed to (those photos will be around forever), you can organise a fake photo shoot to make sure they are camera ready.
This one will take some serious planning, but you could always get their bestie involved, convincing them that they’ve won a competition to do a photoshoot. Then, after they have been styled and made up, you can slip on to the set, ready to get down on one knee. You’ll also have a ready-to-use photographer there to capture the moment!
Where to do it: Make sure to use a professional photography studio, so you can ensure the pictures are high quality.
Hire a private space for just the two of you
Why: If you’ve got the funds, then hiring a private space for you and your partner could be an option. One idea that we love is hiring out a capsule on the London Eye. The team here provide you with a photographer (disguised as your personal host), a glass of Champagne each and a box of chocolate truffles.
You’ll also have those unbeatable views of the London skyline as your backdrop too. Not based in the capital? There are plenty of other ways to propose in private, including hiring a hotel room and filling it with romantic touches, or splashing out on a private dining room in a restaurant.
Where to do it: Make sure the venue knows (and can accommodate for) your plans. Extra points for choosing a spot with sentimental value.
Now that the proposal’s sorted, it’s time to start planning the big day! Head to our website to find a whole host of UK wedding venues.