What New York Times Wedding Announcements Tell Us About Marriage Trends

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(Newswire.net — June 15, 2016) — Wedding Crunchers – a unique search engine that was specifically built to analyze wedding announcements appearing in the New York Times has taken a look back at relationship trends in New York City over recent years, and the findings are incredibly thought-provoking! The data analyzed includes over 63,000 wedding announcements, and the results provide significant insight into what has changed since 1981 when it comes to relationships and marriage. The number of couples meeting through online dating, such as free online chat rooms, is definitely on the rise as a way to meet a future spouse, as is the average age for marriage.

The wedding announcement database revealed that the age that individuals are getting married has been increasing as the years steadily tick past. While marriage used to take place commonly between twenty-somethings, as this was the norm, now marriage is actually more likely to happen in one’s thirties. The median age for marriage in 1989 was 27 for women and 29 for men, and by 2016 the median increased to 30 and 32 respectively. You are much more likely now to see a 35-year old in the wedding section than a 25-year-old – this was not the case just 20 years ago. The exception to this rule lies with same-sex couples, where the median age has actually gone down over the past few years – 43 was the average age for marriage in 2011 and 35 in 2016. This change is likely due to legislation passed in 2011 when many couples who would have been married earlier were finally able to be married. Further statistics will be needed in the future to see how these numbers change with time.

Technology and online dating are playing an increasingly important role in how couples meet today. 702 wedding announcements were examined, dating back to 2015, to see how couples have been meeting each other in recent years. Based on these results, schools, such as colleges and universities, are the most common way that couples meet in New York City. Harvard took first place in this school category, followed by Cornell. The Mutual friend connection landed in second place, meaning that a large percentage of individuals meet through a friend that they both know. In third place was online dating, including dating websites, dating apps used on mobile devices, and other channels related to technology. This category accounted for over 10 percent of the total recorded relationships. These results mean that it can now be estimated that one in ten marriages in NYC began with the couple meeting online.

The wedding announcement database showed that in New York City, while younger couples often meet in school, older couples have a greater chance of meeting online or via a mutual friend than other age groups. Keep in mind that these numbers reflect marriage announcements, and as the younger generation (who uses online dating as one of the primary means of meeting eligible partners) reaches marriage age, this number is expected to grow.

While Wedding Crunchers is limited to marriages in New York City, the results provide a bit of insight into the rise of online dating (such as dating websites, apps, and free online chat rooms) as a whole.