I was struck by this news item.
One in 9 couples planning to marry this year, or 225,000 engaged pairs, owe $3.7 billion in personal loans for canceled weddings during the pandemic, according to a new analysis from Loanry, an online personal lender. That works out to about $16,444 in outstanding balances on average for each couple.
“This last year will have been devastating for many couples,” said Ethan Taub, founder of Loanry, “especially for the percentage paying off loans for weddings that haven’t happened.”
The analysis considered five factors: the average number of weddings that take place each year, the percentage of those postponed this year, the number of personal loans taken out for weddings, the average cost and budget of a wedding, and the average loan amount for a wedding based on Loanry’s own data.
I can understand couples who want to have a nice wedding. Some like to have really grand weddings but the idea of taking out a huge loan for what is a one-day party is something I cannot wrap my mind around, because it means you will start married life with a huge debt burden hanging round. your neck.
It is one thing to take out a loan for college education because that is an investment that one can hope to recoup with higher income. But wedding expenses are not like that.
In Sri Lanka, wedding expenses were usually borne by the bride’s parents and there too there is the deplorable practice of families spending far more than they could afford just to keep up with the Joneses and to impress people.
In the US, I blame the wedding industry who have created the impression that a big fancy wedding is what everyone should aspire to. Celebrities feed into this mindset but they have the money to have a splashy party.