NEW YORK — The most common avenue for today’s newlyweds to find true love is online, a new study finds.
Researchers at The Knot, a major online wedding planning service, interviewed over 14,000 engaged or recently married American brides and grooms, hoping to learn more about the trends that are guiding modern marriages.
Their biannual report, known as The Jewelry and Engagement Study, found that a quarter of grooms “meticulously” plan their marriage proposal, with the average proposer spending nearly four-and-a-half months trying to get every detail right.
No matter their level of preparation, a full 60 percent of proposers said they felt nervous when asking to tie the knot, which was a six percent increase from 2011.
“We’re seeing proposers put more time, thought, and effort into creating the perfect proposal, as well as an engagement ring they know their partner will love,” says Kristen Maxwell Cooper, The Knot’s editor-in-chief, in a press release. “And while proposals are less of a surprise than in years past, there’s an uptick in grooms returning to time-honored traditions, like proposing with the engagement ring in hand and getting down on one knee.”
Some of the statistics published by the researchers included the average cost of an engagement ring (over $6,300), the average number of rings viewed before one was ultimately purchased (26), the proportion of rings with a custom design (52 percent), and the average ring’s total carat size (1.8).
In terms of notable marital trends, a plurality of soon-to-weds or newlyweds said they had met on a dating site or social media at a combined 19 percent — though far more of those respondents found love through the dating site (17 percent). Another 17 percent said they had met through friends, followed by college (15 percent) and work (12 percent).
Nearly a quarter of couples said that they had discussed marriage with their partner at least two years prior to becoming engaged, while the vast majority made sure to address potential points of conflict, such as child-rearing, finances, and religious beliefs.
Interestingly, only one in three couples reported shopping together for their rings, despite the price of engagement bands having increased by about 25 percent over the past six years.
Eighty-six percent of grooms still buy their engagement rings at a physical retailer, but the 14 percent who made the big purchase online represents a four percent increase from 2011.
Lastly, the practice of bending on one knee, and asking, “Will you marry me?” saw more than a five percent increase from earlier this decade.
While marriage may be down among millennials, those who decide to exchange vows appear to be doing it the right way.