Story: Sexualities

Age at first sexual experience – international comparisons

People in 44 countries were asked when they first had sex in surveys conducted by the condom manufacturer Durex between 2005 and 2009. The data from that research is shown on this world map. The average age in New Zealand (17.8 years) was similar to that in the United States, Australia, Türkiye and Slovakia. Countries where people were significantly younger when they first had sex include Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark – all 16.5 years or less. First sex occurred at older ages – 22 years or more – in Malaysia, India, Singapore and China.

This data provides an estimate of trends in age at first sexual experience, but is not the outcome of systematic research of panels of people in similar age groups in different countries.

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Source: Durex Network Research Unit, Face of global sex report, 2005–2009

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How to cite this page:

Louisa Allen, 'Sexualities - Young people', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 19 July 2024)

Story by Louisa Allen, published 5 May 2011, reviewed & revised 17 Jul 2018