The doors of the Love Agency will open after office hours on the Helsinki wedding evening
Dozens of couples will be exceptionally married on a weekday wedding evening at the Helsinki Love Agency, otherwise known as the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. This fully-booked event was organised in response to the backlog of marriage ceremonies from the summer and offers an alternative to off-site weddings. Popular days for holding a marriage ceremony also include special dates, and the agency's booking service is already taking the popularity of the next Leap Day (29 February) into account.
The Love Agency in Helsinki is a popular place for marriage ceremonies, and, in particular, all summer ceremonies to be held on Fridays at the Agency were already booked in the spring. The September marriage event will serve not only those who work, but also those who did not manage to book a marriage ceremony in the summer.
At the Love Agency, marriage ceremonies are free of charge during office hours, and this is also the case for the wedding evening. The marriage ceremony can also be ordered to be held in a desired location and time for an additional fee.
On Thursday, couples will exchange their vows in Lemmenjoki and Riisitunturi
26 couples will be married at the Love Agency on Thursday, 21 September. At the wedding evening, couples will be able to get married until 7:00 p.m., as opposed to 3:15 p.m., which is the last marriage ceremony appointment on normal days.
The time reserved for the marriage ceremony for each couple is 15 minutes and the actual ceremony lasts only a few minutes. Couples will be married in pleasant wedding venues, which were opened in 2020 in Lemmenjoki and Riisitunturi. The venues can accommodate 15-20 guests, with seating available for some of the guests. There are witnesses present on behalf of the agency and, if they so wish, the wedding couples will be presented with a photo of themselves.
The Love Agency can also provide wedding witnesses
Digital and Population Data Services Agency personnel all over Finland have the opportunity to perform a special function during office hours: they can act as a wedding witness if two witnesses aged 15 or over are not present in the wedding party. This may be the case, for example, when a couple is eloping.
The personnel at the Helsinki office were offered the opportunity to register as witnesses for the wedding evening. Despite the late hour of the event, there was plenty of enthusiasm for participation, as the list of volunteers quickly reached twenty. Unfortunately, the rest had to wait for the next event.
There is also a great deal of enthusiasm among the officiators. During the evening, there will be five wedding officiators, including one of the Directors General of the Agency.
Couples getting married: remember to bring your ID documents with you!
It is not unusual for one of the couples to suddenly leave the venue and take a taxi home to fetch the ID documents they forgot. In other words, it is a very good idea for the couples to include identity documents on their checklist, along with themselves and any witnesses they might have. Rings are not necessary for a civil marriage ceremony.
An examination certificate for impediments to marriage is only required if it has been drafted by a parish. It is advisable to check the validity of the certificate already when booking the marriage ceremony: the certificate for impediments to marriage is valid for four months after it has been issued.
Leap Day 2024 is already being booked
A marriage ceremony may be reserved at the Love Agency no more than six months in advance. New appointments open for reservation every day.
“We quickly notice popular days in the appointment. In February of 2024, the popular days are 24 February 2024 and Leap Day, which is 29 February 2024. We already have several reservations for Leap Day in different cities,” explains Tanja Tams, Chief Specialist with the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.
If there are available appointments and the examination certificate for impediments to marriage is valid, you can get married no earlier than one week after making a booking.
Civil marriage is the most popular way to get married
Right after gaining its independence, Finland enacted the Marriage Act in 1917, which also permitted civil marriages. The popularity of civil marriages compared to ecclesiastical marriages has increased over the years, and according to statistics, this has been the most popular way of getting married over the past ten years. Approximately 56% of marriages concluded in 2022 were civil marriages.
The Digital and Population Data Services Agency marries couples of the same and different genders. The officiator is a district registrar or a notary public. There are 33 wedding venues in Finland, most of which are on the agency's premises.
Legal marriages are made by the Evangelical Lutheran and Orthodox churches and registered religious communities entitled to do so. We and the District Court carry out civil ceremonies.