- Meeting online is now the most popular route to marriage, representing 28% of first weddings since 2017 in our survey
- However it comes at a cost. Couples who meet online are statistically more likely to divorce in the first three years of marriage than couples who met socially or through family and friends.
- These risks disappear after three years of marriage.
- To us they suggest the importance of social capital, the cumulative collection of knowledge, wisdom, love and security built up by friends and family. If you meet online, you have fewer sources of reliable long-term information about the person you marry.
- It shouldn’t put people off meeting online. Marriages still tend to do better than those cohabiting but not married. But the extra risk is ideal territory for marriage preparation courses whose benefits are most apparent in those early years.
Our survey is weighted to be representative of the UK population and our analysis takes into account age, gender and occupation.