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Things to keep in mind when proposing in public?

In the age of social media and romantic comedies, public marriage proposals have become increasingly popular. From the grand gesture at a baseball game to the flash mob at the Times Square, public proposals offer a memorable way to pop the question. However, with the rise of these spectacles comes the need to understand the etiquette that underpins them.

If you’re considering taking your proposal to the public stage, here are some critical guidelines and tips to bear in mind.

Proposing in public means that the location you choose will be open to the other people as well, who can take pictures and videos of you and your proposal. This might add an extra pressure on both of you or on the other hand make it easier.

So what is the Marriage Proposal Etiquette in Public Locations?


1. Ensure Your Partner Would Appreciate a Public Proposal

While many cherish the thought of a public proposal, others may feel put on the spot or pressured. Know your partner’s preferences beforehand. It’s essential that the proposal is more about their comfort and happiness than it is about making a grand gesture.

2. Seek Necessary Permissions

If you’re planning to propose in a specific public location like a restaurant, park, or monument, it’s essential to get the required permissions. Many places have rules or restrictions, and getting prior approval ensures you won’t run into any unforeseen interruptions. For example the popular proposal spot in Dumbo is required 21 day notice for the permit. Same applies to the charming gazebos in Central Park which requires the permit in order to secure the desired day and time.

3. Consider The Audience

Remember that a public proposal will inevitably have an audience. Be considerate of those around you. Avoid proposing during crucial moments at events, such as during a concert’s climax or in the middle of a theatre performance or at someone else proposal. If you see proposal decorations at the location that you wanted to propose, consider moving to another place.

4. Plan for Privacy, Even in a Public Setting

While the idea is to propose publicly, finding a spot that allows for a semblance of privacy within that space will enable a genuine, heartfelt exchange. A quiet corner in a park or a secluded spot by a water fountain can offer a good balance. Central Park has lots of secluded gazebos, so even  if you are at the park its still private and intimate proposal. Those location however require a permit, so plan accordingly.

5. Have a Backup Plan

Outdoor proposals especially are subject to various unpredictable factors like weather or unexpected events. Always have an alternative idea or location in mind, just in case. Weather in New York is very unpredictable,  so if you proposing outdoors always think of the inside place ( hotel room or private venue).

6. Document The Moment, But Be Discreet

It’s natural to want to capture this pivotal moment. If you’re planning to have a photographer or videographer, ensure they’re discreet and don’t intrude on the moment. Likewise, be respectful of others around you. Not everyone may want to be included in your personal memories.

7. Respect Reactions

Should your partner be taken aback or need a moment, respect their feelings. Every individual reacts differently, and it’s crucial to be supportive and understanding regardless of the response. Especially if its a crowd of people around you, protect your partner and give them a minute to get together.


8. Consider the environment

Public locations are not wedding/ engagement venues. You can not bring confetti, glitter, balloons, sparkles, alcohol  to it. Also clean up after the proposal to leave the place as you find it.


Public proposals can be magical and memorable. However, the key to a successful proposal lies in meticulous planning and a deep understanding of your partner’s preferences. Respect for others and the location is paramount. When done right, this grand gesture can be a story you both cherish for a lifetime.

The best public proposal ideas in New York:

  • Top of the Empire State Building: Nothing quite matches the romance of the city lights from this iconic skyscraper. Evening or early morning can be particularly magical times.


  • Central Park:
    • Bow Bridge: This cast-iron bridge offers a romantic setting with the city skyline in the background.
    • Bethesda Terrace: With the Angel of Waters fountain and the Central Park Lake as a backdrop, this is a picturesque spot. This spot is perfect for our caricature artist marriage proposal.
    • Conservatory Garden: A secluded, beautifully landscaped part of Central Park, it’s an idyllic place for a private yet public proposal.



  • The High Line: This elevated linear park built on a historic freight rail line offers a unique setting amidst urban greenery.


  • Rooftop Bars: NYC is home to numerous rooftop bars with panoramic views. Some favorites include The Press Lounge, 230 Fifth, and Top of The Standard.


  • DUMBO: This Brooklyn neighborhood offers fantastic views of both the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges. The cobblestone streets and waterfront add to its charm. ” Marry me” sign is perfect option for this location.


  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art: If your partner appreciates art, consider proposing in front of their favorite artwork.


  • Times Square: While it’s bustling, if you both enjoy the energy of the city, the heart of NYC can be the place. Maybe even arrange for your proposal to appear on one of the big screens!


  • Rockefeller Center:
    • Winter proposal by the famous Christmas tree or while ice-skating at the Rink in Rockefeller Center.
    • During other seasons, the Top of the Rock offers a less crowded alternative to the Empire State Building with equally compelling views.


  • New York Public Library: For literary lovers, the iconic Rose Main Reading Room or one of the library’s many beautiful corners can be enchanting.


  • On a Boat: Charter a private sailboat or join a nighttime cruise around Manhattan for a proposal with the NYC skyline and perhaps the Statue of Liberty as your backdrop.


  • The One World Observatory: Offering a bird’s-eye view of the city, this is a modern alternative to the more traditional skyscraper proposals.

Remember, regardless of the location you choose, it’s essential to consider your partner’s personality and preferences. Some might love the grandeur of Times Square, while others might prefer the serenity of Central Park. Tailor the proposal to ensure it’s memorable and meaningful for both of you. And, if you’re planning an elaborate proposal or need a particular spot at an attraction, always check in advance for any required permissions or reservations.

If you  are planning to propose in NYC and don’t know where to start, contact us now at and our experienced team will help you create the most unforgettable marriage proposal experience in New York.

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