The pandemic silenced the wedding bells: March saw the historically smallest number of weddings in the Czech Republic
A white dress with a train or a veil, a huge bouquet and a hundred guests at the wedding reception? Why not! But not in the era of coronavirus pandemic that put the continuous growth of wedding since 2014 to a halt this year. The measures taken in the spring of this year threw a massive wrench into the wedding business. Many couples had to reschedule or cancel the wedding.
The most significant decline occurred in March
In the first three months of this year, only a little over 38,000 marriages took place, which is a fifth less than in the same period last year. The most significant declines occurred in March, April and May. According to available data, there were less than 600 marriages in March, which is the smallest number of weddings concluded in one month in the more than 100-year history of the Czech Republic.
"The slowdown in the spring could not be offset even during the summer and early autumn, although according to preliminary data, August and October saw more marriages this year than last year,"
said Terezie Štyglerová, head of the demographic statistics department for the CZSO.
February and October saw a lot of weddings
The number of marriages concluded in February (2,200), on the other hand, was unusually high - the highest since 2003, in fact. One third of February's newlyweds chose Saturday, February 22, for their wedding day. Saturday, February 29, and Thursday, February 20 also enjoyed great popularity.
The most popular date of this year was Saturday, October 10, which became the third day with the highest number of concluded marriages in history with more than 1,800 weddings.
The age of engaged couples is gradually increasing
The age structure of engaged couples has changed significantly over the last twenty years. Couples decide to take this big step in life much later than before. For example, in 2001, 43% of newlyweds were under the age of 25. Last year it was only 12%.
"In the last eighteen years, the number and share of brides and grooms under the age of 25 has decreased significantly. In the case of grooms from 23% to 5%, in the case of brides from 43% to 12%,"
says Michaela Němečková from CZSO's Department of Demographic Statistics. On the contrary, the number of older people (40+) walking down the wedding aisle is increasing. Since 2001, there has been a 4% increase.
Most heard the wedding bells for the first time
Three quarters of the brides enjoyed their wedding day for the very first time, which hasn't changed in the last decades. Most people who get married repeatedly are over the age of 50 (or 40 in the case of women).
Weddings where the bride was older than the groom may have been pretty rare until recently, but times have changed! In the last five years, one-fifth of brides entering marriage were older than the groom, by four years on average.
Women are attracted to foreigners
Men abroad have long been aware that Czech women are very charming. The number of women who marry foreigners is much higher than the number of Czech men. Last year, almost 3,000 Czech women got married to a foreigner, and 500 fewer Czech men.
Regarding other nationalisties, Czech women most often marry Slovaks, Germans and Brits. In the case of Czech men marries a foreigner, Slovakia wins again. Ukrainians and Russians are also popular among Czech grooms. About a quarter of marriages with at least one foreign citizen in the couple take place outside the Czech Republic. The most popular destinations for Czech citizens to marry abroad are Slovakia, Germany, Mauritius, the United States, the United Kingdom and Greece.