28 May 4 Nigerian Wedding Customs
With over 200 different ethnic groups, Nigeria is a very culturally rich country with tons of different customs and practices. When visiting Nigeria, you can’t escape the wealth of diverse cuisine and traditions that are present all over the country, and some of their most unique traditions are their marriage traditions.
Here are four unique Nigerian wedding customs.
4 Nigerian Wedding Customs
1. Having two weddings. It’s pretty typical for Nigerian couples to have two different weddings. They will have a cultural wedding where everyone is invited, and people are welcome to gatecrash the festivities. They will then have a religious ceremony afterwards, which can be a more private event that’s exclusive to family and close friends. The religious ceremony is also much more westernised and can include a white cake and a western-traditional white dress.
2. Waiting until your older siblings are married. While the tradition isn’t widely practised anymore, it is an Igbo wedding custom. This custom is based on the idea that marriage should follow the order of seniority, meaning the older siblings were expected to get married first, and the younger siblings had to wait their turn. As you can imagine, if the younger sibling is ready for marriage, it can be particularly frustrating and frustrating to have to wait for your older siblings to get married first.
3. Prostrating in front of the bride’s family. This Yoruba tradition hasn’t gone away with modern times. In the Yoruba Kingdom, respect is paramount, and if you’re planning to marry a Yoruba girl, then you will be expected to prostrate in front of the bride’s family on your wedding day. No matter what you’re wearing, be it a $1,000 suit or gold, there’s no way to escape this tradition. This prostration usually happens after prayers, when the groom dances in with his friends and offers his respects to the bride’s family.
4. Spraying money on the newly married couple. Money spraying is a fun Nigerian custom that is a gesture to show happiness for someone. This gesture isn’t performed exclusively at weddings; it’s also performed at graduations, end-of-life celebrations, and baby showers. Money-spraying is the Nigerian way of showering your loved ones with blessings. There is no right amount to give, so you can come with $10 to thousands of dollars. It all depends on what you’re comfortable giving.
Getting married in Nigeria is an event, even if you’re not a member of the wedding party! If you’re visiting Nigeria and have a chance to experience the luxury and excitement of a Nigerian wedding, have your money ready for the money-spraying portion of the night, and be prepared to witness customs that are unique to one of their many ethnic groups!