Mean age of marriage Japan 1955-2018, by gender

According to a statistic about the mean age at first marriage, men and women in Japan are getting married later than previous generations. In 2018, it was estimated that the average age of women who marry for the first time was 29.4 years, while men were on average 31.1 years old when they first got married.

Social integration of women

The rising age at first marriage was partly explained by a common theory which holds the growing number of “parasite singles” accountable for the trend. The term refers to young working people aged between 28 and 40 years who decide to keep living comfortably in their parents’ homes in order to save money. However, an alternative explanation is the more active participation of Japanese women in society. Today, they are more educated and have more fulfilling jobs. With a rising income they are less dependent on a husband to afford housing or other things.

Family planning

This development has an effect not only on the age of marriage, but also on the mean age of childbearing, which has climbed up three years since the 1960s to around 31 years. Further corresponding trends can be seen in Japan. The number of marriages has also decreased from approximately 726 thousand to 607 thousand in 2017, fewer marriages than in any year since the end of World War II. At the same time, surveys revealed that less Japanese plan to get married within the next five years compared to previous times.

Mean age at first marriage in Japan from 1955 to 2018, by gender

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Sources

Release date

September 2019

Region

Japan

Survey time period

1955 to 2018

Supplementary notes

*Estimate.

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