Ah, the holidays. A time for spending time with family. A time for dreaming of spending it with wealthier, sexier, more interesting people.
Of course, you would never admit to that. Neither would we. Frankly, we're appalled you would even think such things of our family. But surely we can all agree that some people fantasize about such things, right?!
Enter Brandon Wade, an aspiring physicist who turned his MIT education and bad luck with the ladies into an Internet matchmaking empire. His specialty? Matching up the wealthy (i.e., Sugar Daddies) with the attractive (i.e., hot women). (Sure, there are Sugar Mommas but if we're being honest, and going purely by the numbers, Sugar Daddies outnumber Sugar Mommas like 15 to 1.)
His sites include: SeekingArrangements.com, SeekingMillionaire.com (singles only), WhatsYourPrice.com (where the rich bid on dates) and his newest venture, Miss Travel which keeps the Sugar Daddy theme but adds in the element of travel and adventure. (Kind of like that time the Griswolds went on a European Vacation.)
Wade's taken a lot of heat for his chosen profession – CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin once called him an "MIT-educated pimp" and Business Insider called his company a "sex-for-cash empire." Sure, the Sugar Daddies pay to be members (on MissTravel.com, it's $50 a month to communicate with up to 10 people or $95 a month for unlimited communications) and hotties get in free but Wade swears he's no pimp and every site has a prominent disclaimer that "Escorts Are Not Allowed" – but hey, if a date ends in sex, who are we to judge? (High five, maybe, but judging -- no.)
"Guys are always looking for sex. In a recent NY Post poll, 62 percent of men said hooking up was the No. 1 motivation for joining dating sites. Guys will always be guys! I didn't invent that – humanity did!" Wade quipped. "But there's a gentlemanly way versus a very crude way to go about it" and, he said, their aim is to keep it classy.
His word choices are bold -- "Sugar Daddy," "Sugar Baby," "Date beautiful people" and the tagline for the travel site, "Attractive people fly free," but he says they're just being honest.
"At the end of the day, dating is just a very superficial process," he said. (That's true – how many of us have ever looked across the room and said, "Wow, I'll bet she's got a GREAT personality!")
But that doesn't mean love is dead.
"I think as a society, as a human race, we believe in true love," he said.
Here's our two cents on true love – and the idea of the beautiful flying free this holiday season.
First thought that popped into your head when you heard about this new travel web site pairing Sugar Daddies with hot travel companions.
John said: I worried that all my frequent flyer miles would go to waste now that I can fly free.
Cindy said: I knew it – beautiful people DO get more free stuff than the rest of us!
What do you think about that tagline -- "Attractive people fly free." Do you dig the honesty or need them to pretend for a little longer that people will love you for your mind?
John said: It would be better if it were just "attractive people fly." Because then it would be about superheroes. Hot superheroes.
Cindy said: I dig the honesty. Though, I still like to be told I look skinny in these pants -- even when I don't!
Do you think it's unfair that beautiful people get free stuff?
John said: What's worse is that wealthy people get free stuff. The more you can afford to pay for something, the more likely someone is to just give it to you as a gift. Swag.
Cindy said: Yes, but life is unfair. Those beautiful people will grow old and wrinkly just like the rest of us – but be less-adjusted to receiving less attention than the rest of us! So, it all evens out.
Do you think people can find true love on sites like this?
John said: Yes. I've met her. But Tru Luv isn't her real name. It's her "stage name."
Cindy said: Sure. Why not? Though, I think they're more likely to find a Paris magnet for their fridge.
Brandon Wade – "MIT-educated pimp" (as Hostin so eloquently described him), Internet genius or lonely nerd who got lucky?
John said: Those things are the same.
Cindy said: Internet genius AND lonely nerd who got lucky. Have you seen his wife?!
Your favorite "testimonial" by a member.
John said: "However, I did wish at times she weren't so crazy about texting her friends on her cell phone while I was with her," said BikeBoy85. Heartbreaking.
Cindy said: "Best & most touching experience ever:-)" – Miss Flower, Oct. 2, 2012
Let's get down to business: Will this travel web site help the economy? Specifically, do you think it can help end the European debt crisis?
John said: I have a joke about stimulating demand here but it's too dirty for our website.
Cindy said: Definitely! Airline tickets, dinner, flowers and other, um, dating accessories – that all pumps money into the economy! And adding the element of travel with MissTravel.com – this may turn out to be Europe's secret fiscal weapon!
It's been a rough year for a lot of people. Do you think this travel web site will help put some magic in the holidays for some?
John said: It's perfect for holiday travel. If you have always craved spending Christmas time with a stranger's family rather than your own, you should definitely sign up. Fly a hot girl home for the holidays and let her father beat you to a pulp.
Cindy said: The holidays tend to be a slow time for dating sites but I think fantasizing about traveling to Rome or Bali with a wealthy or gorgeous new friend will help make the holiday-dinner conversation about Aunt Mavis's hip replacement much more palatable!
Describe a dream date a lucky couple could have using this web site.
John said: Fly to Scotland. Fish and drink scotch. Do I have to bring a date?
Cindy said: Traveling around the world, sampling bacon from other countries – and finding the right bourbon to go with it.
Gotta ask –would you ever use this web site?
John said: The minute a scotch heiress looking to import a fly fishermen signs up, I'm in.
Cindy said: Um, if I was confident I could find that perfect bacon-bourbon travel companion, then yes.
Wade said he's going to come up with a new Sugar Daddy-type web site every year. What should his next one be?
John said: Dudes Who Will Fill Your Gas Tank At Self-Service Station.
Cindy said: Millionaire-With-a-Medical-Marijuana-Card Matchmaker.