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Monday, September 06, 2004

(Family and kin) Marriage expenses doubled in 3 years

I think I've noticed it already in an earlier post how establishing a kind of a research institute seems to be a good way to create credibility and status for a company. Sunoo (Sônu) is a marriage information (read: matchmaking) company, which also operates a Korean Marriage Research Institute (한국결혼문화연구소). It has now surveyed that in three years, the marriage expenses have doubled from 78 mil W to 135 million (€ 52000->90000) (Chosun Ilbo).

In five big cities, 294 couples married last year were surveyed. Can't say what kind of couples they were and how representative the sample is; if they were Sunoo customers, the sample should be representative of the upper-scale income strata. But that steep rise is an interesting piece of info in itself, and we can also marvel the outragously sounding sums of money.

The groom and the bride use their own money 32 mil and 14 million respectively; the rest is of course the parents' burden (1/3 for the couple, 2/3 for the parents)

In Korea the huge expenses of getting married is made of mostly of the housing expenses, as the newlyweds need a place to live (that's why I say marriage expenses, not wedding expenses). The survey says that housing makes 63% of the all expenses. The rise in the housing expenses comes not only from the generally more expensive housing but also from the newlyweds increasingly living apart from anyone's parents (pun'ga 分家), 87% as compared to 81% in 2000. The average size of housing diminished slightly from 24.7 p'yông (pyeong) to 23.8.
Even though the economy was worse last year than in 2000, expenses for wedding gifts (yedan, yemul) doubled during that period from 11 to 22 million (€15000).
Funny to see that a research institute (?) established by a matchmaking company should describe the hugely growing marriage expenses as a consequence of "distorted marriage culture" (kyôrhonmunhwaûi waegok).

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