Marriage is one of life’s most unforgettable events, and all the more so once you start looking at the bills.
A wedding nowadays costs north of HK$310,000, Metro Daily reported, citing results from a recent survey conducted by ESDlife.com.
That’s what couples set aside on average for the big day, according to the survey, which was based on interviews of more than 1,000 people preparing to tie the knot between now and 2017.
Half of the budget goes to the wedding banquet.
The newlyweds, of course, expect their guests to give cash gifts, which could help defray the costs.
The average rate is HK$1,200 per person if the wedding banquet is to be held at a luxury hotel and HK$1,000 if the reception is in a not-too-fancy venue.
That’s not a big increase from the HK$800 to HK$1,000 “benchmark” rate not too long ago.
ESDlife research manager Jeremy Mou Chi-wah said the local economy has remained steady this year, translating into a slight increase in wedding expenses.
As for the cash gifts, Mou said the increase in the amount is not so much the result of rising expectations or expenses of the bride and groom as increased generosity on the part of relatives and friends who don’t want to see the couple starting their married life in the red.
The cost of making a marriage proposal has also increased to an average of HK$36,000, up 20 percent from last year, with the big ticket item being the diamond ring.
All this is good news to jewelry shops, bridal service providers and related businesses.
It is estimated that the size of the entire wedding services market will balloon to HK$17.7 billion this year.
For those who are thinking about popping the question, the survey found that 28 percent of women would like to get a marriage proposal on a beach, while 22 percent prefer a scenic location overseas.
However, the reality is that 23 percent of marriage proposals take place at home.
And in another sign of the times, 32 percent of the couples plan to live with either the family of the man or the woman after marriage, up 12 percentage points from the previous year.
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