Italy is the top foreign location for couples in Munster to tie the knot, it was revealed today.
Cork Passport Office issued 660 “letters of freedom” to Irish citizens getting married in the romantic Mediterranean country in the past year.
A total of 1,400 such documents – which grant a bride or groom formal permission to wed – were supplied as part of a pilot project.
However, the service will be officially launched tomorrow by Foreign Affairs Minister and local TD Micheal Martin.
Other popular overseas locations for weddings of Munster couples included Spain, Cyprus, Malta, France and Poland.
“Italy tops the list because of the numbers wanting to marry in Rome,” said a spokesman for Mr Martin.
A total of 12 letters of freedom were issued for weddings in Poland, which is thought to reflect the new relationship Ireland and that country,“ he added.
Cork Passport Office is also marking its 21st birthday in 2008. It processes more than 130,000 passports a year and employs 100 people.
“Because of recent innovations, Irish citizens are now guaranteed a passport within 10 working days through Swift Post – a far cry from long queues outside offices during the 1990s,” Mr Martin added.