Weddings for Australians in same-sex relationships have officially overtaken local gay marriages within New Zealand, with 58 per cent of them coming from over the ditch.
With Australia failing to keep up with the times and adopt same-sex marriage, over 270 couples have undertaken the three hour flight to come to New Zealand and wed instead – a practice made possible since our laws changed in 2013.
Australian economists commented saying what a loss it is for the country, seeing as these weddings could add $550 million to the economy as estimated by ANZ Bank in a report from 2015.
“There is no doubt that Australia is missing out on the business that would be generated by same-sex weddings if we had marriage equality legislation”, said Cherelle Murphy, a senior economist at ANZ who co-authored the report. “We’re probably also losing wedding-related consumption to overseas destinations.”
Same-sex weddings have created a new industry of global proportions, with other major economies such as America, UK and France legalising same-sex marriage too.
Weddings taking place in New Zealand seem to have no sign of slowing down, with more then 3,000 ceremonies taking place since 2013, with almost half being from foreigners. This is also hugely helping the tourism industry which just last year (2016), forged ahead of the dairy industry as our country’s top export.
Same-sex marriages are also bringing in the moolah from more than just the initial wedding ceremonies themselves, but the additional services that they generate.
“Honeymoon travel would be one example,” said Murphy, “As would divorce lawyers.”