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a person holding open a modern gents ring box with an engagement ring inside

When it comes to dating and engagement timelines, there are many different norms and general guidelines. This can make things tricky, especially if you’re not dating in a traditional or conventional way. No matter what your timeline is, there’s always a point at which you feel totally in love with someone to the point where you know you want to spend the rest of your life with them. This feeling could begin to reveal itself after a few months, a year or even just a few days! 

The hard part is knowing whether or not the time is right. Is it too soon? Do you act on your feelings right away or see how things go over the next few months? Both of these questions essentially beg the question: How soon is too soon to propose? While the answer might differ for some couples, there are generally a few guidelines to follow. Here’s what you need to know about proposing at the perfect time. 

Timeline vs. Milestones: What is the perfect time to get engaged? Well, the answer might seem pretty simple, but requires more thought than you might think. Truthfully, there’s no “perfect time” to get engaged by time standards or how long you’ve been dating someone. Instead, think about if you have had monumental moments within your relationship. Some couples include meeting each other’s families, exchanging promise rings or moving in together as milestones leading up to an engagement. If you have done some or all of these things or have talked about them in depth, you might be ready to propose! If you haven’t done these things or haven’t had deeper conversations regarding the future of your relationship together, you might want to hold off on proposing – at least for a while – so you can experience some of these milestones together as a couple before you get engaged. 

Discover How to Give a Promise Ring

a person putting an engagement ring on a womans finger

Communication Is Key: One of the most important parts of any relationship is keeping a good flow of communication between you and your partner. This goes for small things as well as bigger, more important topics. Communicating about your relationship is so vital because you are sharing your life with another person, so knowing how they feel about things is something a relationship cannot lack. 

Communication regarding future relationship plans is a step in the right direction when it comes to preparing for a proposal. Communicate with your partner and don’t be afraid to let them know how you feel! If you’re ready to take a new step, whether it be moving in together or getting married, talk to your significant other and make sure they are also on the same page. 

Get the Ring: This one might seem a bit obvious, but in order to propose, you should have a ring to give to the other person! If you haven’t started the conversation about engagement or looking for engagement rings, that should definitely happen before you pop the question. In terms of time, there’s no right or wrong time to propose as long as you and your partner are in agreement that this is what you want to do. Otherwise, it might be too soon to propose. 

Another factor that might inhibit you from getting a ring is budgeting and financial standing. While there are many engagement rings out there, you might not be able to swing it right now, and that’s okay. If you can’t currently afford an engagement ring but you’re ready to take the next step, you might think about purchasing an affordable engagement ring instead. Furthermore, you and your significant other might want to go engagement ring shopping without the immediate intention to buy, just so you can figure out what they like and how much their favorite ring style or cut might cost. 

Buying an Engagement Ring 101: Everything You Need to Know

a woman showing off her engagement ring next to I said yes written in the sand

Plan It Out: If you have talked to your partner about wanting to get engaged and you feel like it’s the right time to pop the question, congratulations! It’s time to propose. Once you have the ring, it’s time to plan a proposal they will love. Keep in mind that while there are many fun ways to propose, it doesn’t always need to be over the top. Sometimes, the best proposal is something intimate, low key and reflective of your personal journey as a couple. 

Marriage Proposal Meaning and History: Learn More Here