Families in Northeast spend most on prom

In this Saturday, May 12, 2012 photo, Rockford High School students dance at The Pinnacle Center during their prom in Hudsonville, Mich. Prom spending is expected to rise in 2013 to an average $1,139. (AP photo)

High schoolers and their families are spending more on prom -- and families in the Northeast are spending the most of all.

Visa's annual prom spending survey says families plan to spend an average of $1,139 on prom this year. That's a 5.6-percent increase from the average of $1,079 spent last year, and a 41.1-percent rise from the average of $807 in 2011.

The biggest spenders on prom are families in the Northeast, who say they expect to spend $1,528 on the high school dance this year.

Families in the South intend to spend $1,203, familes in the West expect to pay $1,079 and Midwest familes plan to spend just $722, the survey found.

Visa says parents expect to pay for 59 percent of prom costs, while teens will cover the remaining 41 percent.

Parents and teens curbed prom spending during the recession, but are starting to be more willing to spend more bucks on the big event.

"You don't want your kid to be the only kid who doesn't have what the other kids have," Kit Yarrow, a consumer psychologist and professor at Golden Gate University, told the Associated Press.

Contact Emily Babay at 215-854-2153 or ebabay@philly.com. Follow @emilybabay on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.