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Valentine's Day sees thousands of Beijing couples wed
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Valentine's Day was hugely popular for marriages in Beijing with 2,689 couples getting spliced on Saturday.

The number showed a rise of nearly 2,000 marriages over the Valentine's Day last year. It is also the highest figure since Aug.8, 2008, the day the Beijing Olympics opened, said Li Ziwei, chief of the marriage registration section with the municipal department of civil affairs, Sunday.

Haidian District, home to higher learning institutes and hi-tech firms, had the most marriages with more than 600 on Saturday alone.

Li said the wedding boom was not just because it was a Saturday and Valentine's Day but also because it was an even numbered day according to the lunar Chinese calendar. The Chinese associate even numbers with good luck.

The current economic crisis was also said to be another factor behind the boom. "With the financial crisis, many people, especially young people, have chosen to shift their focus of life from career to family," said Li.

In China people have to bring their identity card, household register, and three photos to register their marriage. The process might take just a few minutes.

(Xinhua News Agency February 15, 2009)

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