Countries Where “I Do” Comes at a Later Age

older couple wedding late marriage

The age at which individuals choose to marry provides fascinating insights into societal priorities, economic realities, and changing perceptions of adulthood. There exists a cohort of countries where tying the knot later in life has become the norm. So which countries are ranked as the oldest ages for marriage? Here’s out list based on 2023 for the 15 countries where the average age for marriage is the oldest.

15. Germany

#15 our list is Germany, where precision meets tradition. German women typically get hitched around 31, while men wait until 33. Germany’s efficient approach to life might be reflected in their patient approach to marriage.

14. France

France, synonymous with romance, sees its women marrying around 30 and men at 32. Despite the country’s romantic allure, the French focus on self-growth and enjoying their youth before settling down.

13. New Zealand

New Zealand, with its magnificent landscapes, also sees its people marrying later. Kiwi women and men typically say “I do” around 30 and 32, respectively. The Maori concept of ‘whanau’ or extended family might influence their perception of relationships and marriage.

12. Canada

Our northern neighbor, Canada, has a similar trend, with women marrying around 30 and men at 32. Canadians believe in building a strong foundation, be it in relationships, careers, or personal development, before making lifelong commitments.

11. United Kingdom

The British Isles, with their rich history and diverse cultures, see women marrying around 30 and men at 32. British folks often prioritize establishing their careers and traveling before walking down the aisle.

10. Australia

Down under in Australia, the age for marriage is also on the higher side. Aussie women typically marry around 31, and men at 33. With its sprawling beaches and vast outback, Australians focus on adventure and personal growth before settling down.

9. Switzerland

Switzerland, known for its watches and chocolates, seems to take its time when it comes to marriage. Women here often marry at 32 and men at 34. The Swiss believe in building a life first and then sharing it with a partner.

8. Finland

Finland, with its serene lakes and forests, sees its citizens marrying around 32 for women and 34 for men. The Finns, known for their unique concept of ‘sisu’ or inner strength, believe in strong foundations, including in relationships.

7. Italy

In the romantic backdrop of Italy, marriage is something that’s savored, not rushed. Italian women usually marry around 31, and men at 33. Perhaps the delicious pasta and wine keep them busy before they decide on lifelong companionship.

6. Spain

Spanish couples, amidst their vibrant culture and sunny beaches, also wait to get married. Spanish women typically tie the knot at 32 and men at 34. The rich traditions of Spain might be old, but the approach to marriage is quite modern!

5. Netherlands

In the Netherlands, where canals and tulips dominate the scenery, marriage comes after personal development. Dutch women and men typically marry at 32 and 34, respectively. They value their independence, often preferring cohabitation before taking the marital plunge.

4. Iceland

Iceland, the land of geysers and glaciers, also seems to be the land of late marriages. With a strong sense of community and independence, Icelanders often marry around the age of 33. This island nation believes in enjoying youth and building strong relationships, often outside the bounds of formal marriage.

3. Norway

Moving further north to Norway, the trend continues. Norwegians have a deep appreciation for individual freedom and life experiences. On average, Norwegian women marry at 32, while their male counterparts wait till 34. The breathtaking fjords and mountains might be taking their time, but so do couples before they marry!

2. Denmark

Denmark, a neighbor to Sweden, also sees marriage as something to do later in life. The Danes often emphasize finishing their education and establishing a stable career before saying their vows. Here, women typically marry around the age of 32 and men at 34. Denmark’s strong support system for parents might also be a reason people don’t rush into marriage.

1. Sweden

In the picturesque land of Sweden, many prioritize personal growth and career before settling down. It’s quite common for Swedes to first live together, even start a family, before opting for marriage. The average age for first-time marriage is around 34 for women and 36 for men. This country values individual choice, and waiting for marriage is a reflection of that.

Josh Dudick

Josh is the owner and lead writer at Daily Wisely. His career has taken him from finance to blogging, and now shares his insights with readers of Daily Wisely.

Josh's work and authoritative advice have appeared in major publications like Nasdaq, Forbes, The Sun, Yahoo! Finance, CBS News, Fortune, The Street, MSN Money, and Go Banking Rates. Josh has over 15 years of experience on Wall Street, and currently shares his financial expertise in investing, wealth management, markets, taxes, real estate, and personal finance on his other website, Top Dollar Investor.

Josh graduated from Cornell University with a degree from the Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management at the SC Johnson College of Business.