What Miss Travel Is and Isn’tBy: Abby Johnson - May 4, 2012
A new site called Miss Travel launched recently for “generous” and “attractive” people that focuses on both dating and travel. Miss Travel, which has already garnered nearly 50 thousand members, describes itself as the “only online dating website” where “we match Generous travelers who hate to travel alone with Attractive travelers who would love the opportunity to travel the world for free.”
The idea of the service is to bring together individuals that share a love for travel but lack either the funding or the companion to do so. Both the “attractive” and the “generous” users can sign up for free, but the “generous” must pay if they want to communicate with the “attractive” users. This type of model is common among most dating sites, aside from the “attractive” and “generous” elements.
What’s your first impression of Miss Travel? Let us know.
While Miss Travel clearly states that “escorts are not allowed,” the early perception indicates otherwise. Neetzan Zimmerman on Gawker said “it’s really the #1 prosti-travel website,” and called the site’s CEO and founder Brandon Wade an “e-pimp.” Other sources, including mainstream media outlets, have also indicated that it’s essentially a prostitution service.
Twitter users have also weighed in on the service:
#MissTravel is innovative in one, or more likely 2 sectors. Pretty easy to guess what that second sector is…At least
Brandon Wade, however, maintains that the service is not about escorts or prostitution. He tells WebProNews that Miss Travel is simply a “dating site that combines the adventure of travel.”
“We advocate the fact that ‘generous’ users have to pay for the travel expenses of the ‘attractive’ users, but nowhere on the website do we advocate that money can be exchanged between the members, nor is the word ‘sex’ ever sort of mentioned,” he said.
“We are very clear that escorts are not allowed on the website,” he continued, “and we take a lot of proactive action to keep the escorts off our website.”
When asked why Miss Travel advertises for “attractive” people and not just anyone, Wade explained that the phrase was designed to include anyone that “feels” attractive. In other words, users don’t have to meet any certain criteria to participate in the service.
“’Attractive’ is in the eye of the beholder,” he said. “We’re not saying you have to be a certain size, or you have to be so tall in order to qualify as being ‘attractive.’”
Wade also has some other websites including SeekingArrangement.com and WhatsYourPrice.com, that indicate the same ideas as Miss Travel, which is why there are a lot of people that are still unconvinced of the “no escorts” stance. But, Wade insisted to us that escorts aren’t allowed on any of his sites.
According to him, men should be gentlemen and pay for items for women. This apparently became his motto after growing up with a mother who complained since his father didn’t buy her jewelry, clothing, etc.
“All of the websites that I’ve built so far focuses on a common theme that… you need to be a little bit generous… in order to… basically have an advantage on dating,” said Wade.
“Generosity and paying for an escort – there’s a huge difference between the two.”
He added that people are “reading between the lines” when they equate Miss Travel to an escort service.
“The last thing I want is this constant reminder that it has something to do with an escort service, because it does not,” he said.
In the near future, he plans to incorporate testimonials on the site to prove his point. Wade is also in the process of partnering with travel companies and potentially partnering with in a television effort to further change this perception.
Based on this information, how would you define Miss Travel? We’d love to know.