By Livy Beaner // SWNS
Forget walking down the aisle to “The Wedding March” — a new survey suggests couples are looking to make their wedding as unique as they are themselves.
A poll of 2,000 adults in serious relationships, engaged or married, split evenly by generation, revealed 68% feel it is important that their wedding is customized to be unique to them rather than follow tradition.
For 45%, that means hosting the ceremony in a place with personal significance.
Meanwhile, others agreed that it means ditching the same old tunes and choosing a different song to walk down the aisle (36%), leaving dress code norms behind (29%) and choosing an unconventional theme (18%).
One in five millennials would even take it a step further and incorporate a surprise performance by the couple, guests or a professional performer.
In fact, more than three-quarters (78%) of respondents feel weddings are more memorable when they reflect the couple’s lives.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Minted Weddings, the survey revealed that regardless of how the couple chooses to customize their day, some traditions are best left in the past.
Customs like not seeing each other before the ceremony (36%) and wearing a white dress (36%) are considered outdated.
But that doesn’t mean guests should come in their all-white attire. Almost one in five (19%) Gen-Zers say wearing white is the rudest thing you can do as a guest, whereas only 2% of baby boomers would also take offense.
However, the top tradition couples are leaving behind is the bride’s family paying for the wedding (46%). So much so that the majority of respondents say that they and their partner are forking out the big bucks together.
Ceremony locations are also seeing a shift. When analyzed by age, respondents who would get married in a house of worship declines with each generation — 39% of baby boomers, 24% of Gen Xers, 18% of millennials and just 13% of Gen Zers.
When it comes time to make the big decisions, many couples tend to base their final calls on budget (45%). However, 16% of Gen Zers are likely to make a pros and cons list, more so than any other generation.
The survey also found that 63% of married couples encountered at least one surprise mishap on their wedding day or weekend.
Most commonly, those surprises included family drama (34%), missing or late guests (32%) and inclement weather (27%).
Food mishaps such as “[the] wedding cake toppled over”, and “my mom spilled the punch she had just made” also wreaked havoc on their perfect day.
But many couples weren’t letting anything get them down — 48% simply let it go, while 30% handled it themselves. Only 5% of respondents admitted those unexpected turns ruined their big day.
“Planning a wedding is like writing a love story. It’s about gathering the people whom you cherish most. It’s about traditions, but making them your own. It’s important that couples’ personalities shine through in the celebration, and we’re honored to help design their forever,” said a Minted spokesperson.
Almost two in five (39%) have an “A” and “B” list for their wedding guests — with “A” being people who are definitely invited and “B” being alternates depending on factors such as cost or RSVPs.
This was especially true for Gen-Zers, with 62% creating dual guest lists, compared to 43% of millennials, 31% of Gen Xers and only 19% of baby boomers.
A-listers include immediate family (79%), close friends (72%), extended family (52%) and family friends (50%).
Back-up guests include current and former colleagues (44%), childhood friends that they may not currently be in contact with (43%), current and former teachers and educators (33%) and friends of the bride and groom’s parents (32%).
But respondents were divided on how to deal with plus ones. Many (39%) believe it is most appropriate when the couple knows the guest’s partner.
Others will include a plus one if the guest is living with their partner (31%) or as long as the guest and their plus one have been dating for more than six months (29%).
Only 11% of respondents would never give out plus ones, including 18% of baby boomers, more than any other generation.
When asked what advice they’d bestow on couples planning their wedding now, respondents highlighted communicating opinions honestly (57%), going with the flow (46%) and making a detailed budget (45%).
"Whether couples are celebrating at the courthouse or a garden, in black tie or casual attire, we are here to support them from when they say "Yes" to far beyond "I Do," said the Minted Weddings spokesperson. "We are honored to have helped over one million couples walk down the aisle with designs that reflect their unique style."
TOP LOCATIONS FOR A WEDDING CEREMONY
- Beach - 24%
- House of worship - 23%
- Garden - 23%
- Backyard - 17%
- Banquet hall - 14%
- Hotel or resort - 12%
- National park - 9%
This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 Americans who are in serious relationships, engaged or married, split evenly by generation (500 Gen Z, 500 millennials, 500 Gen X and 500 baby boomers) was commissioned by Minted Weddings between June 26 and July 4, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).