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This study aimed to determine the factors influencing the use of spacing contraceptive methods in India, particularly from men’s perspective. Data were obtained through a semi-structured interview schedule from 2687 married men aged between 18 and 40 years from central Mumbai City, India, during 1999. Chi-squared tests and binary logistic regression analysis was carried out to determine the relationship between various variables and the likelihood of a couple using spacing contraceptive methods. Of the 2687 couples, 1395 (51·9%) were using one or other method of spacing contraceptives and 1292 (48·1%) were not using any method at the time of survey. Male participation in contraceptive use was 23% (condom and withdrawal). The results indicate that the use of spacing contraceptive methods was significantly higher among those couples where the men desired one or two children (OR=4·3), had knowledge of five or more contraceptive methods (OR=1·9) and discussed with their wives obtaining family planning information (OR=3·2), spacing (OR=2·7) and permanent (OR=2) contraceptive methods. Age, income, desired number of children, knowledge of a greater number of contraceptive methods, inter-spouse communication regarding obtaining family planning information, spacing and permanent methods were found to be strong predictors of the use of spacing contraceptive methods. The study underlines the importance of intervention programmes aimed at promoting a small family norm, increasing the number of contraceptive choices available and encouraging inter-spouse communication. Hence, policymakers and programme managers should encourage interventions in this direction, targeting couples to enhance the use of spacing contraceptive methods.