Haggling has always been an unspoken reality in the gay escorts market. Of course, that is because so far the privileged tier of the market has had the monopoly of public representation. Welcome to another issue of the school series.
Haggling has always been part of a diverse market
Haggling has always been out there, certainly. In countless cultures all around the world, and in all times throughout human history. Such universal ubiquity has an obvious explanation: it works.
Despite the fact that negotiating a price has been a usual occurrence not only to trade sexual favors, but also all kind of goods and services, it is still an unspoken practice.
On one side, we have gay escorts who honestly feel insulted when their initial quote is responded with a counter offer. On the other side, there are clients who firmly believe in this made up premise, about holy prices.
Of course, there are also disingenuous guys in both sides. However, we are not going to address dishonesty here, but misunderstanding.
In few words, haggling is an honest practice, you should not be ashamed to negotiate. However, there is even more. Look around. Negotiating is not just honest, but also an effective way to find the right deal that makes both parties happy. It has always been effective, here, everywhere, and throughout history.
Before going on, I want to recognize this thread in the M4M forums, that has inspired this post.
The vilification of haggling is cultural
Clearly, there are cultures where, unlike the USA, haggling is not only accepted but expected. However, this evident truth does not explain its vilification in the American gay escorts market.
In my opinion, it is explained by social class culture. Although it has always been an extended practice in the lower tiers of the gay escorts market, it is of course the privileged ones who command the power to define good and wrong. Otherwise, haggling would be the norm.
Negotiating prices for all kind of goods and services has been an everyday reality for the poor. Vilifying the practice is just another sample of how the privileged ones exclude from legitimacy those who develop alternative strategies towards consumption of good and services.
It is not an antagonism between clients and escorts, but between high class (or pretend to be) clients and escorts in one side, and in the other side clients and escorts with lower social status and wealth.
Get used to haggling in the gay escorts market
Despite its unpopularity in the cloud, it is very popular in the land. Not only that, but we can also expect this practice to expand, for several reasons that I will address below, in no precedence order.
Although most times globalization means the Northern economies influencing the Southern ones, often happens the other way. In addition, immigrants from countries where haggling is the norm are bringing their culture with them. As a matter of fact, haggling is a legitimate practice in most Southern Hemisphere countries, specially if you get out of the big cities.
Besides influence from alien cultures, America is experiencing a boom in the gay escorts market. Being ilegal and unregulated, there is no way to know prices for all the newbies escorts and clients entering the market. Notably, haggling is the perfect tool for both sides to reach a happy agreement.
Finally, the new tools provided by technology to assess the always changing game between offer and demand, have pretty much killed fixed priced in many service industries. Ask to the hospitality industry, or the airlines, or check your Uber app. The gay escorts market is not an exception. Perhaps there is going to be an app for that, but meanwhile haggling seems the best way to meet offer and demand in a happy place.
Haggling is just another option
Although one that works quite well. However, we are not advocating for negotiating prices as the only legitimate way to go. Unlike those who vilify haggling, we do not judge other business models. Whatever works for you as a client or as a provider, we celebrate it.
There are providers with one non-negotiable fixed price for their time. Others have a list of different fixed prices based on expected activities together. There are also professionals who offer discounts at certain times of the day or days of the week, or for multiple hours and/or days, or to regular clients. Finally, others negotiate their fee.
None of those practices is essentially effective or honest/dishonest. Each one of them depends on specific circumstances, in order to determine whether or not it is effective, whether or not it is honest.
As we said before, our concern is not the dishonest but the misinformed. Indeed, there are gay escorts who just try to take as much money as possible giving as little as they can. Clearly, there are clients that want to abuse and exploit, and have no respect for the providers.
We cannot help the disingenuous. However, perhaps we can open the minds of those clients and gay escorts who honestly think haggling is insulting or anything else wrong.
Haggling well done
First of all, let’s remind what we have said many times before in the School Series. The key for interaction between clients and providers is mutual respect. However, it is not a symmetric relationship.
Not only clients have the power of money, but also a circumstantial advantage. Nowadays’ is clearly a clients market.
Therefore, there is a golden rule that we must follow to minimize the risk of abuse and exploitation. We must respect the provider’s business model. In other words, we should not ask for a discount that has not been offered. When a provider quotes me 300, most times I say “Sorry, that is over my cap. Good luck and peace out”.
Many times that ends the conversation and we move on. Many times the provider asks for a counter offer, or makes one, opening the table for negotiation. Clearly, this is an indication that he is open to discuss a contract and we would not be disrespecting his business model.
Common arguments against haggling
On the escorts side, the most common argument is probably that asking them to lower their fee is telling they are not worthy enough. I strongly disagree. However, out of respect and knowing that this may be an honest feeling based in a misunderstanding of what haggling actually is, the golden rule posed in the previous section overcomes this objection. As long as there is no client asking for a discount, there is no disrespect.
On the clients side, perhaps the one serious objection is that if we do not pay the full fee originally quoted, we will not get the best service. This objection is more complicated to address.
It is possible to find a provider that needs that money right now, who is not into the haggling model, but who will anyway negotiate to pocket those bills he desperately need. In this case, certainly, you may receive a lower quality service. It happened to me when I was giving my first steps in this hobby.
To avoid such a risk, it is of the upmost importance to pay very close attention to the communication. The difference in the attitude and the demeanor between a professional who is honesty negotiating the contract, and the provider who is unhappily accepting less than he wants, is quite evident if you are not lacking human empathy.
Celebrating diversity in the gay escorts market
There is no norm, there are not standards, there are not best practices out of context. As long as both parties agree and are happy, no one can tell them they are doing anything wrong.
Thanks to Internet, there is an explosion of accessibility and visibility. A market that had always been immensely diverse, however had only two main public images. The wealthy client hiring gays escorts for traveling or spending weekends together in one side, and in the other the street hustler and the sick perverts hiring them. Such an unrealistic narrative is over.
Internet brought to light the millions of clients who can only hire for one hour, or even less. If you are one of those clients, you should not be ashamed.
I am one of those clients. Because I like hiring several times per month, any price above 200 is out of my reach. But I do have those extra dollars in my pocket, and there are plenty of providers who would be very happy taking them.
Again, I have nothing bad to say about those who pay 300, 500, or thousands. Similarly, I see no wrong doing in those who pay 150, 100, or less. Everything depends on the circumstances.
After all, our hobby is about matching the right client with the right provider. In a diverse gay escorts market, the price is just another variable in that equation.
Hasta la próxima pinga, amig@s!