Going home for Chinese New Year but don’t feel like getting nagged to death by relatives about the fact that you’re not married yet? Not to worry, once again, the Chinese interest is awash with opportunistic entrepreneurs offering up their services as fake significant others to put your parents minds’ at ease.
Each year around this time, the booming rent-a-girlfriend/boyfriend business shifts into gear. This year, desperate singles have their pick of a variety of methods to secure the perfect temporary partner, including websites dedicated to the service, offline matchmaking agencies, and WeChat groups operating as matchmaking marketplaces.
According to Beijing Youth Daily, some singletons are willing to pay as much as 1,500 yuan per day to rent a boyfriend/girlfriend during this holiday season. Much of the business is done on sites which require registration. Customers can peruse an inventory of eligible partners that includes pictures and details about their height, weight and educational background. While spending the night is obviously a necessity, many specify that no “special services” will be going on during that time, including kissing.
China Daily mentions one 1,000-person QQ chat group filled with advertisements for rentable boyfriends who list the services they can provide such as “coping with questions concerning marriage from parents and relatives.” The price for a fake boyfriend on this group generally ranges between 1,000 yuan to 1,500 yuan plus expenses during the Spring Festival holiday, double what it usually is.
Meanwhile, South China Morning Post reports that one especially desperate bachelor on Baidu is offering to pay up to 6,000 yuan to a woman willing to pretend to be his girlfriend for just one night as he returns to eat dinner with his family.
Last year, an intrepid reporter at Hunan TV decided to go out and investigate some of the matchmaking services in his city. He found that matchmaking offices were offering girlfriends-for-rent at a flat fee of 3,000 yuan to 4,000 yuan during the week-long holiday.
Of course, you could always save some money by not renting a significant other and confronting your relatives about their nagging. For how to do that, check out this masterpiece on CNY from the Shanghai Rainbow Chamber Singers.
[Images via CGTN]
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