German Sex Workers Feel The Pinch Of The Recession

With too many people left with too little spending cash, the world's oldest profession (in one of a few countries where it's legal) is feeling the pinch. Hence: brothel discounts!

Some brothels have cut prices or added free promotions while others have introduced all-inclusive flat-rate fees. Free shuttle buses, discounts for seniors and taxi drivers, as well as "day passes" are among marketing strategies designed to keep business going.

Yeah, you read that right. AARP members and taxi drivers get discounts, which is probably enough to keep my from dating German taxi drivers or elderly German men for the rest of my natural life.

It gets worse, sort of.

Anke Christiansen, manager of the "GeizHaus," said the effects of the economic crisis were clear. "The regular customers who used to come by two or three times a week are only coming by once or twice a week now."

A "GeizHaus" client, who gave his name as Pascal, said: "Naturally we're all feeling the effects of the crisis." He added that he could no longer afford his usual two or three visits a week.

GeizHaus charges $50 American for sex acts, which means Pascal used to drop $150 every week for sex with a professional sex worker. Therapy costs less than that, dude.

One brothel has an all-you-can-[whatever] policy:

Berlin's "Pussy Club" has attracted media attention with its headline-grabbing "flat rate" — a 70-euro admission charge for unlimited food, drink and sex between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

But I'm totally sure the sex workers there are getting their fair share of money, right?

There are, of course, concerns about new sex workers entering the field because of the economic crisis.

[Stephanie Klee, a prostitute in Berlin and former leader of the German association of sex workers] and others said they were alarmed that amateur prostitutes — mostly women with low-paid careers — were increasingly turning to prostitution to make ends meet.

"More and more women are moonlighting on the weekends," said Ahrens. "They're not able to get by with their main job and are in pretty dire straits. For some it works out okay but it's tough for some others and they often don't stay very long.

Well, at the point at which one is sexually servicing elderly men and taxi drivers for half price, participating in all-you-can-fuck days and constantly renegotiating your fees downward, yes, I suppose the women who take up sex work to pay the bills don't find the rewards, such as they are, worth the risks.

Amid Recession, Oldest Profession Gets ‘Creative' [MSNBC]