HA NOI (VNS)— Do you need to have someone to warm your heart on Valentine's Day? Pine no more. A newly evolved service is offering a girlfriend or boyfriend for rent has appeared on the horizon and is likely to do a thriving trade.
The service is aimed at the increasing demand by many people to have a "temporary" partner for a limited time.
Just type "dich vu cho thue nguoi yeu" (or boyfriend/girlfriend rental service) on Google, and you will get more than 1.2 million results related to your search. Several companies or websites, including vinamost.net, hopdongtinhyeu.com, are offering the service.
Founded in 2009, VinaMost is thought to be the first professional company in Viet Nam offering the service.
The company gets a greater number of inquiries at Tet (Lunar New Year) or Valentine's Day.
"This Tet, we got nearly 100 contracts, mostly from successful businessmen, who wished to have a beautiful companion at meetings or dinners with their business partners," VinaMost general director Nguyen Xuan Thien told soha.vn.
Depended on the specific requirements of each client, the value of each contract might cost from few hundreds thousand dong to tens of millions of dong.
"A young woman, who doesn't want to be described as a lesbian, signed a VND26-million (US$1,200) contract with our company to rent a boyfriend for one week of travel together with her parents, who came from abroad to visit her," Thien said.
Less famous than VinaMost, hopdongtinhyeu.com is operated by Nguyen Tan Dat – a former graphical student.
Unlike other boyfriend/girlfriend rental service, the one offered by hopdongtinhyeu or love contract is just to "create an appropriate opportunity for single guys and gals to meet each other". Its fees rarely rise above VND500,000.
However, to be a client or a girlfriend or boyfriend for rent of the hopdongtinhyeu, people have to fill in a registration form.
"Through their answers, we hope to learn their real purpose for needing the service. If we feel they are not appropriate, we will deny them the service or introduce them to our other service, which is more suitable for them," Dat told Viet Nam News.
Those joining the on-line groups have to give evidence proving that they are single.
Since its launch nine years ago, the site receives about five to seven requests for special occasions [Tet or Valentine' Day]. For the rest of the year, the number is only one or two requests a month.
Even though the number of link-ups is relatively small, the results are quite big.
"After dating, about 40 per cent of our clients and their companions have taken their relations a further step," Dat said.
The rental service has flourished in Ha Noi and HCM City.
Operated by Thu Hang, a young woman in HCM City, the CLB Cho Thue Nguoi Yeu (Club of Partners for Rent), targets male clients only.
As the service can be referred to an erotic service, the renting regulations have been stated on the club's Facebook page.
With the fixed price at VND1 million, each "contract" date lasts no more than three hours.
The beautiful young women involved in the role of a girlfriend will hang out, dine out, go to a cinema, theatre or just simplly have a talk over a cup of coffee. They will also join a meeting with friends or family members of their clients.
The working hour limits from 9am-10pm, but "No hotel dates".
According to Thu Hang, the club gathers female students, aged between 18 and 24, from several colleges and universities in HCM City.
Apart from their good appearance, the girls must be active, open-minded, and fond of socialising and communicating.
According to love and marriage adviser Nguyen Thi Kim Thanh, the special service is becoming more popular due to the increasing demands of modern society.
"However, we acknowledge that this sensitive service can be a front for those promoting social evils," she said. — VNS