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Cupid
09-10-2010, 08:57 PM
Has anyone ever heard of such a thing? That is so sad that you have to pay total strangers to hang out with you.

http://rentafriend.com/home/

Hedwig
09-10-2010, 09:01 PM
Has anyone ever heard of such a thing? That is so sad that you have to pay total strangers to hang out with you.

http://rentafriend.com/home/

To pay them is really sad. But to have such a website for people who are new in town or who are only there for a couple of weeks for work it would be great.

Come to think of it, for the latter people it might be really hard to find someone to hang out with if they are only in town for weeks at a time.
I wouldn't mind - if I find no one I am always happy to be by myself but some people need company and for those it is a perfect solution.

Artemis@BC
09-10-2010, 09:02 PM
OMG, that is sad! Although I can't say I'm all that surprised that such a service is needed...

ArtisticFan
09-10-2010, 09:17 PM
Sometimes I get so annoyed with my friends and family that I have thought about such a service. It might be nice to hang out with someone and know that there is no attachment.

overedge
09-10-2010, 09:28 PM
I don't know about doing this in your own town, but I think this would be great if you are travelling and wanted to get a local to show you their town. Instead of, say, going on a bus with a bunch of other tourists and a bored guide with a script. Really, there aren't that many options for individual travellers who don't want the standard group tour, unless you want to pay for a personal guide - that can be fun and very insightful, but it can also suck if the guide's main goal is to get as much money out of you as they can :( And I have heard some horror stories about travellers booking a "personal guide" and finding out that they misunderstood the purpose of the booking agency and had arranged for an encounter with a guide who wanted to get *really* personal, if you get my drift.

If you and the "friend" were both clear that you wanted to see the city and hear about their experiences living there, and then you would buy them coffee or lunch, this could be an excellent way to do that.

Garden Kitty
09-10-2010, 09:33 PM
How sad would it be if your RentAFriend wouldn't go with you. :(

genevieve
09-10-2010, 10:57 PM
I can understand if someone is really social-phobic and has a hard time meeting people that this might be a low-risk way to get used to talking to folks or interacting with people. Or, if there's an event that you just really need to attend and can't find someone to go with you (and for whatever reason can't/won't go alone). It's basically the legal side of the escort service industry.

I love that you can hire someone to be your "wingman/woman" :lol:

milanessa
09-10-2010, 11:54 PM
I love that you can hire someone to be your "wingman/woman" :lol:

Me too.

Garden Kitty
09-11-2010, 01:28 AM
I read an article on MSNBC service about this and they mentioned that it was patterned after a popular rent-a-friend program in Japan. They also talked about different uses and said one woman hired a friend to go visit her grandmother every week after the girl moved away. Others "rented friends" when they were interested in taking up hobbies but didn't know other people who could help get them started in it.

orbitz
09-11-2010, 02:18 AM
It would feel too weird just knowing that someone is hanging out with you only because you're paying him/her to do so.

mmscfdcsu
09-11-2010, 02:53 AM
I know people who want a friend so badly. Even a paid friend would help. Mental health clients are often very lonely. I have one client who has been waiting for several years to matched with a volunteer who will do simple things with him like go out for coffee or to a movie. Client is a wonderful man but has impaired social skills along with his mental illness. Once someone meets and gets to know him they would be friends for life. Sadly, client will never make friends on his own. It is a shame that so few people have the time or interest for this kind of volunteer work. :(