Couples who want to apply for a marriage licence in Beijing will have to dress smartly in future, or risk being turned away.
The city’s Civil Affairs Bureau has announced a new rule saying that couples won’t be issued a licence to marry if they show up in shorts, T-shirts or other casual wear.
The bureau’s marriage registration director, Han Mingxi, says people aren’t showing sufficient respect for the process. “It is not unusual to see couples registering in shorts and slippers. It shows their carelessness and disrespect for marriage,” he said.
Coming into effect on 1 July, the new rule is part of efforts to tackle the capital’s divorce rate.
China’s divorce rate has been rising for more than a decade: in 2015, the government said that 3.6m couples ended their unions during the previous year.