For many Chinese men, the income and property ownership requirements for finding a Chinese wife are simply out of reach. For others who have the financial means to marry, the psychological stress derived from dating what they consider spoiled, materialistic Chinese women doesn’t seem worthwhile.
As a result, thousands of Chinese bachelors every year from both rural (largely poor) and urban (relatively wealthy) areas have taken to wife-shopping in Vietnam, where the women are reputed to be beautiful, docile, and virginal, and where the male to female ratio is rumored to be three to five. In Vietnam, the 1-yuan-to-2700-dong exchange rate allows even poor Chinese men to spend money like royalty (i.e., for the price of three happy meals in China, one can buy a seafood feast in Vietnam), which attracts a surplus of young, single Vietnamese girls looking for a better life. For a fee, local matchmakers broker deals between the bachelors and the girls’ families, guaranteeing weddings within three months and replacements for the girls if they run away within the first year of marriage.
Dai Wensheng, a Chinese man, with his Vietnamese wife A Yin at their 2009 wedding in Vietnam
I related these developments to the Boyfriend, who said, “It’s obvious. If you want a dude, you can’t have standards. Chinese women are learning that.” Smiling broadly, he added, “And you have a dude because you don’t have standards.”
Some articles on the Vietnamese wife trade: