Step-By-Step Checklist for Planning Your Quinceanera

Planning a big event is A LOT of work. When you want to start your Quinceañera planning, it’s difficult to even know where to begin! From venues to dresses, to menus, to photos – there is so much to consider! We have outlined a basic Quinceañera checklist to help you understand what to expect and where to begin without losing your mind!


  • Determine Your Budget

First thing’s first: decide on a budget. Before you can start booking venues or buying decorations, you have to know how much you plan to spend. You’ll get yourself into dangerous territory if you book vendors before you’re sure how much you can spend. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back – learn how much a quinceañera costs with us!

  • Choose a Date

Picking your date is one of the most important steps in how to start planning a quinceañera because the date you choose will have a huge impact when you go looking for vendors. The date you choose will rule out certain types of venues (i.e. a venue in Houston without air conditioning for a July date). The date will also let prospective vendors know if they will be available for your event or not.

Quinceañera Planning
Credit: PatriciaCarrozzini
  • Envision Your Day

This one is something you’ve most likely already started to do, and it will be ongoing for you as you plan. When you dream about your big day, what do you picture? These thoughts will help you along your planning path. Save pins, cut out magazine photos, and compile all of your ideas!

  • Ask Your Friends

Determining your court of honor or bridal party should happen relatively early on, as you might include some of these friends in your planning. Not sure how to ask your friends to be on your court? Check out our quince court-posals for a few fun ideas!

  • Ask for Padrinos

If you plan on asking padrinos to help with your event, make sure you have an idea of who will be in charge of what! We recommend thinking of this early on, that way you’re not rushing to ask last minute. Check out our Padrino List that we created to help you organize your padrinos in one place! Also, check out our article on how to ask for padrinos!


Your venue is the location where you will have your event. You’ll be booking one or two of these, depending on where you have your ceremony. Your vendors are all a huge part in how to plan a quinceanera because they’re the people who will ultimately be working your event and making it such a great memory for everyone, such as your caterer, photographer, DJ, and florist. You’ll want to interview a few of each so you can make a well-informed decision.

Don’t get it twisted – just because this is later in the list doesn’t mean you won’t be doing it early! You will want to start looking at venues as early as a year to nine months before your event to ensure you get the venue of your dreams. Once you’ve decided on a venue or vendor, you will agree on a price and sign a contract. When you are ready to start shopping, we are here to help! Read Questions to Ask at Your Ceremony Venue Tour to help prepare yourself for your venue tours.

quinceanera court photography

  • Go Dress Shopping

Shopping for the dress should happen around 9 months prior to your event. This allows plenty of time for shipping and alterations. To understand more about the timing of dress shopping, read Your Dress Timeline.

  • Buy Invitations

You should start shopping for invitations at least 6 months in advance because you will want to order them 5 months before your event date. You should have a good idea of your event theme and color scheme at this point so you can choose your invitation style. It’s also important that you have your venue booked before you order invites so you can include those pertinent details! Take a look at our beautiful and unique quinceañera invitations today!

  • Plan the Details

The nitty-gritty details come after all the other things have fallen into place; although, it’s likely that you’ll be planning these here and there all along. These details are things like deciding on your centerpieces and aisle runners, creating your seat chart, and nailing down your day-of timeline. Use Our Day-Of Organizer to keep track of all those details.

CHECK OUT OUR ULTIMATE QUINCEAÑERA PLANNING GUIDE, the all-in-one book that walks you through the ENTIRE quince planning process!

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Am 13 and am planing my quince right now and i dont have no money to do a quince but i really want onee

Hi Gloria! Thanks for reaching out!
What’s beautiful about the padrino tradition is that your friends and family can help you to put on the party of your dreams! You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a nice time, either! Check out our articles on DIY and Budgeting to help you plan your quince on a budget!

Be sure to create your free event page at and share your event page with everyone you are inviting!
Happy planning!

I need ideas for table center prices and theme

Hi Mary! We can definitely help with that. We like to suggest themes that are personal to the quinceanera, you can check out LOTS of inspirational articles about themes on our planning guides, here:

Within each of the different theme articles, we suggest different decor, dresses, invitations, etc. that can help to create the full effect! Let us know if you have a theme that you’d like us to feature!

I need help on creating a padrino list for my sisters 15 asap. Thanks for understanding.

I have 6 months till my 15th birthday and i really want to experience a Quinceanera. But i don’t know if my mom will throw me one because of money problems , i feel like i can’t have one since it’s expensive. please help me!

Hi Ashley! It doesn’t have to be an extravagant party! Have your mom, madrinas, or tias help with the food, and have people bring their own chairs for a backyard event! We have tons of articles about DIY and Budgeting, check them out! You can create your free event page and share it with your friends and family, who can help contribute if you’d like to use the padrino tradition! Create your free event page here:

Thanks for reaching out! Happy planning!! Let us know if we can help!

I’m 14 and I need to start planning my 15 I don’t know where to have it at or any decoration ideads I need help

Hey Eliza!
You’re starting your planning journey at the perfect time!
Make sure to create an account with us so you can keep track of your planning and use our checklists for everything you need to plan the perfect event!
If you haven’t done so, sign up here:

You can find vendors in your area by searching for them here:
Make sure to contact them by clicking the ‘Contact Vendor’ button to get more information about pricing and services they offer!

As far as decoration ideas, you can see our list of themes, watch our DIYS and read our guides to make sure your decor stands out here:

Let us know if you have any other questions, we’d be happy to help you on your planning journey!

This is really helping me by reading it, but I am still confused about what I’m supposed to do. I choose a theme and it is a flower theme but I can’t find what I am looking for and my colors are burgundy and gold. And I still haven’t found a dress for my sister to wear to match my color dress. And my quince is in five weeks. The vendors gave me 3 weeks to add or to change anything but I don’t know what to do.

Hello Sofia! We would love to help you with the planning of your event, you can tell us what exactly you are looking for and we can support you with that. For the color combination, champagne is a good complement to burgundy, for example. 😀

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