On Monday, the ABS released their latest installment of data on marriages and divorces in Australia .

There’s quite a bit of info in the series that’s worth exploring, but one of the more quirky pieces of data surrounds the occurrence of marriage throughout the year. We can break that down into the proportion of marriages that occur in each State, by month, and see how different patterns play out across the country and which appear to be primarily driven by weather.(click to expand)


Spring and autumn weddings are preferred everywhere across Australia, except for the NT where winter is the marriage season. Qld prefers the winter ends of Spring and Autumn while Tassie has higher rates in the summer ends of those two seasons.

Our marriage seasons are also changing slightly over time– if we compare the national rate of 2008 above with the rates we witnessed in 1989:


….we find that we’re having a slightly lower proportion of marriages in winter while experiencing significantly higher rates of marriage in October and November compared to 20 years ago.

The median age at which we are getting married is increasing, as is the median age at which we have experiencing divorce and separation.

median1 median2


Not only are we getting married at an older age, but our marriages over the last 20 years are actually increasing in length, while our divorce rate (measured in the number of divorces per 1000 population) has remained relatively stable.


Also worth noting is how the proportion of all divorces involving children has been slowly decreasing over time while the average number of children per divorce has been stable.


If we break down the 2008 figures on the median length of marriage to divorce, by State, a good bit of variation gets thrown up.


Which brings us to the quirkiest bit of the data. If we run a scatter plot of the median length of marriage to divorce against the population size of each state, we end up with this:


The smaller the State population (we’re excluding the Territories), the longer the median length of a marriage. So, if you like your spouse and wouldn’t mind staying married to them for as long as possible, I suggest you pack up and move to Tassie. 😀