Perhaps, it is not surprising that nearly 40% of engagements take place between the end of November and the end of February: the series of holidays creates the perfect festive atmosphere, and the magic of the season not only inspires a romantic mood but also gives grooms the courage they need. Throughout this time, therefore, many-a-man kneels down in front of the woman they love- just as they did in the good old days of courtship- and offers his hand and heart.
Today, 80% of all engaged couples are Millennials.
Regardless of their age or generation, it seems as though all people who propose mark their proposals by presenting their future partners with beautiful rings- sparkling symbols of commitment and love. These often become the most special- and expensive- gift exchanged between partners: the average price of an engagement ring in 2016 was $5000, roughly corresponding to a two-month average salary. Choosing the ring is often as difficult as it is rewarding; in order to ensure that their partner loves the ring, and that it accurately reflects their love, about 40% of couples choose it together.
Of course, many people propose at other times of the year; it depends on personal circumstances and situations.
Engagement stories make up an entire spectrum, ranging from classic, to wacky, to incredible. People profess their love at favorite restaurants, over take-out, and even across the sky!
This task has always been an intimidating one, so what must it be like for Millennials, who desire to be unique and innovative in everything they do?
Surprisingly, this generation has turned out to approach the matter quite traditionally: many opt for a romantic candlelit dinner, or a blooming garden backdrop. These seemingly old-fashioned choices are not boring for them; in fact, Millennial grooms are much more willing to get down on one knee than their older counterparts from Generation X and 70% ask for a parental blessing before proposing.
The world is full of incredible places to propose, from intimate Venetian gondolas, to the beautiful Eiffel Tower lawn; the choices are endless. While one person may prefer the beach, another may decide to propose on a mountain top. Someone may profess their love in a hot-air balloon, while someone else prepares a romantic dinner at home.
Each proposal story is remarkable in its own way, and what follows is a time of joy and wonder:
The proposal has been made, and the ring is happily glimmering from its new owner's index finger.
Now, a wonderful time begins: celebrations fill the air as relatives and friends congratulate the young couple, whose love inspires smiles, and whose joy alleviates the worries of anyone around them.
Then, typically, either the couple themselves or their parents arrange an engagement party: it is a glorious occasion which motivates people to come together. In fact, 25% of couples invite relatives and friends to share their joy with them almost immediately after a formal proposal, and another 25% plan engagement parties a month or so after.
Approximately a month after the proposal, couples begin to plan their weddings.
On average, wedding preparation takes 15 months! This is an exciting time, but one that can be stressful without the right resources and consultants; therefore, many couples engage their family members or hire professional planners to help them sort everything out and make their wedding unforgettable.
I conclude with a few additional statistics about the wedding industry in the United States based on 2016:
Average Spent on a Wedding Dress: $1,564
Average Marrying Age: Bride, 29; Groom, 31
Average Number of Guests: 141
Average Number of Bridesmaids: 5
Average Number of Groomsmen: 5
Most Popular Month to Get Married: October (16%) and September (16%)
The data are taken from the Wedding Wire resources, XO Group, Inc. and http://www.businessinsider.com/marriage-proposals-millennials-2017-5?r=UK&IR=T
Photos courtesy Lisa Dodis, Alex Gordias @ www.alexgordias.com and Edward Stonkevich @ www.esbphoto.com/