In the last 24 hrs all the leading magazines/websites have covered the new start-up kid in the block stayuncle.com. The company’s initial target audience was travelers who wanted to stay & pay for short duration halts. Suddenly the enquiries from unmarried couples increased for such short halts.(At this point am I thinking straight?! YES) They say 99% of enquiries are from unmarried couples for short stay. The biggest supporter or rather to say thebusiness model derives strength from the fact that the Indian Law does not stop unmarried couples from staying in a hotel (if both the adults consent to stay and provide valid ID proof).
The top two comments that unmarried couples share at the reception before sneaking into a room is 1. Is the hotel safe? and 2. God bless you for this service (Am I thinking straight at this point…YES). The company is receiving decent bookings per month with their enrolment rates at 30% (3 hotels signup for the service out of 10 hotels they approach). Even well known hotel chains in the capital have signed-up for the service. The service offered currently in Delhi & Mumbai will soon hit Hyderabad & Bangalore(Hurray!).
What I liked about the whole coverage of this company across websites and magazines is the sense of ‘fear’ that the founders evince about back-lash and moral-policing. I feel they should not. Their claim of police harassment is a mere mockery of the reality. When I can book a call-girl or an escort on craigslist.in and locanto.in why not a hotel room for short stays? (the supply chain gaps are beautifully getting filled. Isn’t it?). What next? May be sex toys and adult stores and may be pink-streets with police protection in the future??(Am I thinking straight at this point?! YES)
stayuncle.com! well faintly ‘uncle’ in Tamil (slang) means a ‘pimp’. I don’t know the rational behind the name of this company. Let us put the debate of conservative society in the docks and pretend to be contemporary. Because even the slightest frown may be mis-read as a danger to freedom-of-speech, well in this case freedom-of-expression (assuming unmarried couples express themselves better in privy of four walls).
I am still wondering why would unmarried couples need hotel rooms for short durations Am I thinking straight at this point? Are you kidding? NO WAY