Traveling the world for free sounds too good to be true. I’ve got a list of destinations I would give just about anything to see: the pyramids in Egypt, the Taj Mahal in India, the nightclubs of Berlin. And apparently there are people who would like to take me there…?
New ‘online dating’ site Miss Travel seeks to pair ‘generous travelers’ with ‘attractive travelers’ and send them on the trip of a lifetime. The website boasts, “Miss Travel was built to solve the big travel dilemma, by matching Generous frequent flyers who have the money but lack company with Attractive travel lovers who don’t have the financial resources to do so.”
The rhetoric of this site and others like it is problematic because it assumes the gender of the ‘generous traveler’ to be male and the ‘attractive traveler,’ who is completely at the mercy of travel benefactors, to be female. The service is 100% free for women, as is customary in the seeking arrangement industry, and was even founded by the CEO of SeekingArrangement.com himself, Brandon Wade. Apparently this guy has not one, but two degrees from MIT and has used his giant brain to connect rich men with pretty young things. (one of his other websites is WhatsYourPrice.com, where men can bid on first dates with you…bid on first dates with you)
Miss Travel seeks to distance itself from the sex work classification. On the How it Works page, Miss Travel even announces emphatically, “Escorts Are Not Allowed.” Accompanying someone to a foreign land, however, based solely on the size of my breasts in an online profile picture, sounds an awful lot like escorting to me. I consider myself a pro-sex feminist, someone who believes in sex work as a viable career option, if chosen, and who also believes that sex work, as such, should have greater provisions and safety in the laws of our nation. I also believe that telling me the easiest way to see the world is by asking a big, rich man to take me is baloney.
I’ll take myself on vacation, thank you.
Image source MissTravel.com