Man proposing to a girlfriendAs a marriage proposal planner at The Heart Bandits, I have helped tons of guys with proposal advice, ideas, and planning. There’s nothing like being at an actual proposal and seeing a couple take the next step in their relationship. There are tears flowing (not from me of course), smiles everywhere, and just a lot of emotion involved that you can’t help but be happy for the couple. It’s nice to know that they have a special story to tell because their proposal was pretty awesome.

One troubling trend that I’ve noticed recently though has been some pretty bad marriage proposal fails that have appeared on social media in the last few years. These fails have either been displayed publicly when the girl has actually declined the proposal, or the proposal itself has been pretty bad. For this reason, I want to give guys out there some advice on what to avoid when planning your marriage proposal.

Proposing When She’s Not Ready
This may sound obvious, but it’s the most important step. You do NOT want to be the guy that gets rejected during a marriage proposal. It will be deeply hurtful and embarrassing.

A couple of ways you can know that she is ready for marriage is if she has talked about it before. Women usually drop hints if they’re ready. She may have mentioned having a family together, described what kind of engagement ring is her style, or even talked about what kind of wedding she would like. If you have heard any of these subjects before then you should be golden.

Don’t be like this poor guy that proposed to his girlfriend at a basketball game and got turned down right on the JumboTron!

Cliché Proposals
So once you’re sure that she will say yes, the next step is to create a proposal plan. If you’re a guy’s guy, then this is easier said than done. There’s lots of stuff that you can find on the internet that will give you ideas, but unfortunately, most of these ideas will be cliché.

What do I mean by cliché proposal ideas? I mean dropping the ring in a champagne glass, having the ring in your dessert tray, and having an airplane fly over with a banner. These have been done over and over again.

It’s better to have something simple that has some thought in it than something grander that you just copied off the internet.

Rushed Proposals
I know how it feels once you have purchased the ring. You feel like you must absolutely propose right away. This is a mistake though if you don’t have a plan.

Don’t just propose to get it over with only to have the ring on her finger as soon as possible. By trying to propose in a rushed manner, you will more likely make the proposal awkward and less romantic.

Instead, try to have an idea of how to propose before you actually purchase the ring. This way, you will not be a nervous wreck thinking that you lose the ring even though it’s locked in a safe, in your basement, that is guarded by 3 armed soldiers.

Proposal With YOUR Likes in Mind
YOU know what I’m talking about here. If you want to propose to her at location that only YOU like, it’s an awful idea. The biggest culprit here is sporting events. JumboTrons are a big No-No. She will see that you really did not put much thought into woo-ing her in the proposal.
To avoid this, you must do something that she enjoys doing or will find touching. If she loves shopping, then incorporate a shopping spree into the proposal. If she loves the outdoors, consider taking her on a hike and having a picnic at the most scenic location.

The point is that you want her to want to remember this moment forever and share it with all her friends and family. If you keep her in mind, your proposal story will be touching and very heartfelt.

Marvin Velazquez is cofounder of The Heart Bandits, which is a Marriage Proposal Planning Company that offers customized proposal ideas, complete proposal planning, and All-Inclusive Proposal Packages. For more information about The Heart Bandits visit