Proposal Tips from Five Men Who Recently Popped the Question

By Erin Ollila

Are you thinking about dropping to one knee and asking your love to spend the rest of her life with you? Before you ask the big question, study these five proposal tips from men who were recently in your shoes:

1. Personalize the Proposal

"I had the perfect plan," David Bauer said. "We would go for a walk in the park where my co-conspirators had placed signs with lyrics from our song. By the second sign, she knew something was up. Waiting for us on the bridge was a small choir that fell into step behind us and began to sing our song as I gallantly got down on one knee and immediately began to blubber and fumble over my words. I'm only partially certain that I actually said the words, 'Will you marry me?'"

His advice for other men looking to propose is simple: "Run through the whole thing in their head often," he said. "Talk slowly. Breathe, and don't expect perfection. In the moment, I wish I would have simply slowed down a little. Regardless, it was one of the greatest days of my life."

2. Stick With Her Favorites

Drew Johnson said of his proposal, "We went to her favorite ice cream place and ordered her a cone of her favorite flavor. At the time, she wasn't happy because she didn't want ice cream! I then stuck the ring into the cone and got down on one knee. She quickly grabbed the cone and then the ring. She ate the ice cream off the ring and said, "Yes!"

Johnson recommends one of the most important proposal tips: "Grab a stranger to take some photos of you," he said. Even if you want to propose privately, you can set a phone or camera up to record a video of the big moment.

3. Surprise Her Somehow

Michael Moreno must have heard a few proposal tips of his own, because he planned an anniversary photo shoot to capture getting down on one knee. He said, "That photo shoot was when I proposed. They're some of the greatest photos we have. We used them on our save the dates as well."

He continued, "Always find a way to make it meaningful to you both. It's not about flair or what is 'right.' It's about surprising her and making her feel incredibly special. A little planning goes a long way."

4. Don't Wait Until the End of the Night

Jason Fazzina knew he wanted his proposal to be special. "I proposed in Walt Disney World," he said. "We had a table for two set on the fifth-floor balcony overlooking the Magic Kingdom and Cinderella's Castle. We enjoyed a five-course dinner while the orchestra played some of our favorite tunes. Once we finished dessert, I got down on one knee and asked the love of my life to be my wife."

He added, "I wish I had proposed at the beginning of dinner instead of the end. I sat through five courses sweating and covered in hives because I was so nervous."

5. Don't Rush to Propose Right Away

Jonathan Corte-Real was laser-focused on one thing after he picked up the ring: proposing.

"When I got the ring, I could not wait to propose to her. It had to be done that day," he said. "But I wish I had a backup plan. The weather was bad, and I could not get the ring out of my pocket. I was expecting some suave proposal, and it was everything but. She said 'yes' in the end, even though it was a rainy day on a beach littered with garbage."

Corte-Real said, "My advice would be to think and plan how you want to do it. Weather shouldn't play a factor, but if it does, then keep an eye on the reports."

Above all, remember to breathe when you're popping the question. Good luck!