They Get Paid Hundreds Of Dollars To Go On Dates — No Hanky Panky Involved — & Tell Us What It’s Like Being A Paid Date - 8 Days Skip to main content

They Get Paid Hundreds Of Dollars To Go On Dates — No Hanky Panky Involved — & Tell Us What It’s Like Being A Paid Date

What’s it like getting paid to go on a date with someone? Who are the people who would pay for a date?

Dee (main photo, right), who’s in her late 20s, works in marketing by day, but often goes on dates after work and on weekends. Stella (main photo, left), a 20-year-old who’s waiting to enter university, also enjoys dating and meeting new people. But unlike the usual dates, Dee and Stella are dates-for-hire who get paid to go out with strangers — and for hundreds of dollars at a time, too.

They are among over 60 people who are under a rent-a-date agency in Singapore known as Elitely. People looking to rent a friend or a date can browse through the profiles on the online dating platform — each individual puts up their photos, rates, self-descriptions, much like a regular online dating profile page.

Dee's profile pictures on Elitely.

All dates have to be scheduled through Elitely and the company has a set of house rules stated clearly on its website. Among them, no physical contact allowed, and suggestive conversational topics are strictly out of bounds. So it’s not what you think it is — there’s no hanky panky involved on a paid date.

Rates usually start from $100 and go up to $570 per two hours, and are decided by the individuals themselves. Dee tells 8Days that her rate is around $300 for two hours, which is usually a meal or just a chat at a café. For Stella, it ranges from $100 to $500 for two hours.

Stella's profile pictures on Elitely.

Both Stella and Dee were recently featured in docuseries Grey Matters (albeit under different monikers) to shed light on their unusual side hustle. The eight-parter, streaming now on meWATCH, deep dives into alternative job types in Singapore, including private investigators and debt collectors.

What’s it like getting paid to go on a date with someone? Who are the people who would pay for a date? 8Days spoke to Stella and Dee to find out more.

8 DAYS: Why did you decide to go on paid dates?
DEE: I [received] a message on a dating app to join Elitely. By then I was used to using many dating apps, but my online dating journey was very boring. Elitely's message made me realise [that it’s] a great idea [to go] on a paid date. I'd been [on dating apps] for a long time; I spend the same effort to do my make-up, dress up, and spend the same taxi fare to go on a date. And so far, the dates I've gone on haven't always gone well. So Elitely seemed like a good idea for my next dating experience.
STELLA: I decided to [start doing paid dating] to know how it feels like since I’m adventurous and love exploring new things. And I see paid dates as a way to make friends and form new networking connections.

Did you have any apprehensions at all?
STELLA: I was afraid about my own safety as [none of] my friends around me have experienced this before.
DEE: No, it's perfectly safe. Because there is no need to exchange phone numbers [with clients]. The admin will contact you to notify you of the dating schedule. You can choose whenever the time is available to you, there is no coercion, you can set your own reasonable compensation for your date, and most importantly, there are clear rules, the date is always held in a public place and your date cannot touch you without agreement.

Elitely sets clear rules, eg. no physical contact allowed. And on your profile on the site, you can also state if you do or don’t drink alcohol. Are there other boundaries you set when you go on paid dates?
[To me, going on a date] feels like I’m making a new friend, and the boundary I set is that the guy doesn’t cross the line of being a friend.

DEE: My boundaries is physical contact. I try to bring interesting conversations, create a comfortable, fun atmosphere, and explore interesting conversations, so the clients don't get bored and don't think far beyond what they should. Even if something bad happens, I can gently remind the client. Or, if the worst happens, I can chat with the admin and tell them about the uncomfortable thing that happened. And [the date is in] a public place, basically I can go any time. So far, I haven’t had to run away from [a date]. I’ve not met such an annoying client and I hope I never will.

What are the clients you usually get?
DEE: Usually I meet successful men who are lonely. Most of my clients are in their 40’s. They're too busy to have normal dates. Actually, they just need someone to talk to, make small talk, laugh, or just enjoy some good food and drinks. They don't want [it] to be complicated, so they also choose Elitely as a simple way to meet fun people and have company.
STELLA: They are usually doing their own business or investing in stocks and are usually around 30 to 40.

What was your first paid date like?
DEE: My first date went normal. He’s a businessman in his 40s, and we went to a nice restaurant, ate good food, drank wine, chatted, relaxed, and laughed. He said he goes on paid dates because he needs someone to chat and hang out with but doesn’t have much time to start everything over. Basically, I like to socialise and meet new people, so paid dating is not difficult for me. From this, I have the opportunity to meet people, and go to many nice places and [gain] interesting experiences.
STELLA: My first date was interesting as I felt like a tour guide bringing someone around to places like Adventure Cove [Waterpark]. The guy [had been away from] Singapore for five years as he went overseas to learn to be a pilot. He said he watched a local documentary about renting a date and he was curious what it’d be like to rent someone out! He approached Elitely and found that I was one of the girls who didn’t mind going to an adventure park to have fun! I really had a fun time reintroducing him to [places in Singapore] and as well as the latest food trends.

Any interesting encounters you had while on a date?
STELLA: I actually learnt how to code when I went on a date with a trade analyst. It was very interesting. We were at a restaurant and started talking about investments and he was shocked at the depth of knowledge I had. He suggested that it was nice if he could teach me [what he knows] so after the meal, I learnt [coding] just by watching him demonstrate it on his computer.
DEE: Once I met a guy who just had his heart broken. During the date he just told me about his ex-girlfriend. I didn't mind. He asked me how to get back with her and I gave him some tips. It continued for a whole week. He told me to accompany him to divert his sadness, [and we did] lots of fun activities and chatted a lot.  And I enjoy it. 

Do your family and friends know that you do paid dating? Have they watched the Grey Matters episode?
DEE: My friends and family don’t interfere much in my personal affairs. Anyway, I don't think there's anything wrong — I'm not selling myself or doing online prostitution. It's just a win-win solution for people who are looking for friends to hang out or chit chat. And for us, we get fair compensation for spending time and chatting with them. I [think that’s] fine.
STELLA: Nope, they are not aware of it, but I do hope to tell them in future when they are more open to the topic.

Are you seeing anyone? Would you continue going on paid dates if you were attached?
STELLA: I think the most viable option is to discuss with my partner [to find out] what they feel about this first.
DEE: I'm single and not close to anyone, so I'm free to date. If it's just a casual date, I think I don't have a problem to keep on doing paid dates. Maybe if one day I'm in a serious relationship, I'll slowly reduce this dating activity.

Watch the full episode of Grey Matters Ep 1: Rent-A-Date here.

Photos: Elitely

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