As technology connects people from every corner of the globe, young Singaporeans are exposed to different cultures and adapt foreign customs. And as the young get more “westernised,” some of the traditions practised before, now fall out of favor. But not these Singaporean wedding traditions that we dearly love:
Gatecrashing, in the context of a Singaporean wedding, is a groom’s rite of passage which serves to test his sincerity and love. On the morning of the wedding day, the groom and his groomsmen go to the bride’s house where they are made to do all sorts of tasks and challenges by the bridesmaids before the groom can see his bride. The fun lies in what crazy ideas the women can come up with for the men to do. It’s all in good fun, and after everything’s finished, the groom wins approval from the bride’s family and friends.
No Singaporean wedding banquet is complete without the Yum Seng, a uniquely Singaporean wedding toast that creates a festive atmosphere. After the couple has popped open the champagne, friends and family offer a toast to the newlywed couple by hollering a long “Yuuuuuuuuum” until they can no longer hold their breath, followed by a short “Seng.” This is usually done three times, each toast representing a wish for the couple.
“Ang Pao” as Wedding Gifts
A true Singaporean tradition, guests usually give the couple money in red envelopes (“Ang Pao”) instead of actual wedding gifts like dinnerware or bed linen. It’s a practical custom favorable to young couples who spend a lot on their wedding. Before each wedding, wedding guests often discuss “How much should I give?” It is a testament to the popularity of this practice that there are even online references to look at to help guests decide what amounts to give. And in another nod to tradition, guests are often advised to give in “lucky” amounts like $88, $108, $118, $128 and so on.
The bride and groom show their love and appreciation for their elders through an intimate tea ceremony where the groom’s family is visited first. This is the time when the bride is formally introduced to the groom’s family and the groom to the bride’s. The traditional tea ceremony includes using the tea set in the dowry basket and the brewing of tea in red dates and longans. Dates and longans symbolise childbirth while the sweet tea represents the harmonious relationship of the newlywed couple and their respective families.
East Meets West
With cross-cultural weddings on the rise in Singapore, couples are choosing to honour the culture of both their families by integrating eastern and western elements to the wedding ceremony. In these modern weddings, Eastern traditions get updated with Western touches such as having a gift registry or having a hen’s night. It’s a uniquely Singaporean wedding that’s truly the best of both worlds.
Even a simple wedding involving only one culture is stressful enough, what more when the bride and groom are of different cultures? Plan your wedding in style and get organised in all aspects of planning with the help of Delegate’s top-notch wedding planners.