|Wedding flowers and decorations are displayed at the National Wedding Expo in the National Convention Center in Beijing on Saturday, March 16, 2013. (CRIENGLISH.com/Liu Yuanhui)|
China's annual wedding expo was recently held in Beijing. The event attracted many businesses within the industry and a host of couples who are looking to get married. For those couples in attendance, breaking the bank is one of the major issues.
Weddings, for many new couples, are considered to be a momentous occasion and a celebration of their whole life, but the detailed preparations and the costs involved in planning the big day remain a constant headache.
The cost of organizing a wedding has skyrocketed in recent years. The average cost of a wedding ceremony in Beijing is about 80,000 yuan, and that figure does not include the cost of the wedding ring, the bride's dress or the photographer. The total cost is at least 5 to 10 times more than that of ten years ago.
Zhang Lin, senior catering sales manager from Raffles Beijing explains.
"For Chinese people, weddings are a traditional custom, and many children are the only child of their family. Parents are willing to spend more on their child's wedding. The economy is getting better and the income for average people is increasing as well."
Zhang also adds that young sweethearts want to try their best to make their big day distinctive and memorable; so the service is still popular.
In recent years, most couples who have tied the knot were born in the 1980s. Liu Lu and Zhang Wupeng have known each other for more than 10 years, since attending middle school. They plan to get married some time next year.
"We know nothing about the cost of the wedding. I only know that we have to inquire about the date in advance, so that the hotel can be booked and about the wedding procedure itself. I don't want to get lost during the service on the day that I get married."
"I think the cost of the wedding is at least 200,000 to 300,000 yuan, according to the latest situation."
"The cost is really a large amount for me, but I have to earn the money myself."
"But before getting married, if we are still short of money, I think we have to ask for help from our parents."
Despite the fact that wedding costs have increased a lot, some young couples have displayed a very rational attitude towards spending money on their wedding.
A woman surnamed Shi spoke about her thoughts on the importance of housing over a dream wedding.
"I don't want to have a wedding ceremony. I am much more pragmatic. First of all, I have to solve the housing problem and instead just hold a simple wedding. I will have better wedding photographs as a memory of the big day. "
In China, marriage is not just a matter for the new couple, but more importantly, a matter for the couples' families. However, no matter how much they plan to spend on their weddings, those couples who are planning to say "I do" will hope to find their own ways to solve most of their wedding worries.
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