On Monday New Zealand became the first Asia-Pacific country to legalize same-sex marriage, joining 13 other nations who have already passed similar laws.
Lynley Bendall and Ally Wanikau, who have been together for 14 years, wasted no time and on Monday became the first couple in New Zealand to take advantage of the new law and tie the knot.
Their vows were exchanged on board an Air New Zealand flight from Queenstown to Auckland, having been chosen from entries that came from all over New Zealand.
Official notice had been given by thirty-one same-sex couples to marry on Monday, August 19, and the ceremonies got under way as early as 8am.
In their winning video entry, the three children of Bendall and Wanikau held up a poster with a sign that read “Please marry our Mums.”
The children are Javarn, age 9, Maycee, age 7, and Mikaere, age 6.
The children held up other posters in the video that read “Getting married on a plane … Wow!!! Imagine that for news at school!”
Same-sex marriage was legalized by New Zealand’s parliament in April. Of the 14 countries that now have same-sex marriages, nine are in Europe.
The Netherlands was the first in 2001, later joined by Belgium, Spain, Norway, Sweden, Iceland, Portugal, Denmark and France. The non-European nations are Argentina, Uruguay, Canada and South Africa. In addition, Mexico, Brazil and the United States have legal same-sex marriage in certain parts of their countries. Image/CNN