McDonald's fast–food romances

Some Chinese couples are turning to McDonald's for engagement parties.

In China, some romantics are choosing french fries instead of the wedding tradition of holding a cherry between their mouths before kissing. McWeddings have been available in Hong Kong since January, and the first official event was held on Valentine’s Day, when a man surprised his girlfriend with an engagement party at McDonald’s.

Though celebrating under the golden arches may not be the North American dream, many Hong Kongers are choosing unconventional wedding locations to save money. The full meal deal costs just over US$1,000 and buys you a ceremony, a reception with personalized menus and McFood for up to 100 people, and a tower of McDonald’s apple pies for dessert. By contrast, a reception at a five-star hotel restaurant in China can cost upwards of US$15,000 for 120 people.

Shirley Chang, the managing director of Hong Kong’s McDonald’s outlets, told The China Post that many young couples go on dates at McDonald’s, so celebrating at the restaurant is appealing. So far, three Hong Kong locations offer the service, and two more wedding parties have been confirmed for this year. The only catch is you can’t control the number of unofficial guests, so McDonald’s is setting up a “cozy area” rather than shutting down the restaurant to regular customers.