Ahead of Tu B’Av, Israel’s version of Valentine’s Day, which begins on Friday night, the Central Bureau of Statistics released data on the relationship status of Israelis from 2019.

Some 48,056 couples married through authorized religious institutions in Israel in 2019. Among those couples, 33,354 were Jewish, 12,900 Muslim, 973 Druze and 803 Christian.

The average Israeli man married at the age of 27.3, while the average woman was wed at the age of 24.9.

Among women who married in Israel in 2019, 2,745, or 5.7 percent, were under 19 at the time. Among Muslim women, 13.7 percent were under 19 at marriage, while 4 percent of Druze women, 2.8 percent of Jewish women, and 0.7 percent of Christian women were under 19 when they wed.

For the vast majority of Jewish couples, 87.8 percent that wed in 2019, this was their only marriage. Among 5.5 percent, both the bride and groom had been in previous marriages. Marriages in which a divorced man wed a single woman constituted 3.6 percent of weddings in 2019, while marriages between a single man and divorced woman comprised 2.4 percent of all weddings that year.

Since 2009, Israel has seen a decrease in first-time marriages among Israelis aged 30 to 34. Although just 3 percent of Jewish men aged 45 to 49 were single in 1970, that number increased to 13 percent in 2019. Among Jewish women in that same age group, the number increased from 2 percent to 11 percent over the same time period.

Between 1970 and 2019, the percentage of single Jewish men aged 25 to 29 also increased from 28 percent to 63 percent, while the percentage of single Jewish women increased from 13 percent to 48 percent.

According to the CBS, the number of Israeli couples living together began to increase in 2008. Between 2000 and 2019, the number of Israelis aged 18 to 34 who were cohabitating increased from 2 percent to 6 percent.

Jewish couples made up 2,189 of the 9,550 overseas weddings registered with the country’s Population Registry Office that year. Forty percent of Jewish couples who wed overseas in 2019 exchanged vows in Cyprus, while 25 percent did so in the United States and 9 percent in the Czech Republic. In at least 566 of these instances, one or both of the partners had made aliyah from the former Soviet Union.

This article was first published by Israel Hayom.

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