Resort weddings for foreign tourists on increase

Okinawa Prefecture officials announced that the number of couples coming to Okinawa to have a resort wedding in 2012 reached 9,118 couples, which is the highest number since 1999 when the prefecture started actively promoting resort weddings.

The figure shows a 2.8% increase (by 246 couples) from last year, and 90% of the increase is attributed to foreign visitors, mainly from Hong Kong. One of the main reasons is that the marriage certificate issued in Okinawa is now legal and valid in Hong Kong and it is considered fashionable to have one’s marriage registered in overseas. The average number of visitors attending a wedding party is 21, including the couple, adding up to a total of 191,000 visitors per year.

The number of foreign couples tying the knot on Okinawa is getting larger. 2012 saw a 86% increase in foreign couples from 221 couples in 2011 to 477 in 2012.

According to country, couples from Hong Kong account for 62%, from Taiwan for 26% and 11% came from China.