This was a fascinating article for me called: The Secret Life of a Bay Street Hooker (Toronto Life)*
*The article is incredibly long and detailed, so while my excerpts from there are going to look like a lot, it is puny compared to the research and depth of the original article.
My only view on the whole subject is if there’s a demand, there’ll always be supply. That’s not to say I don’t have my own personal objections to it (that, and strip clubs), but I’m pragmatic enough to understand there’s a business and you have to do what you have to do. Some even enjoy it like Chloe below.
Sex is one of the oldest businesses in history, and there have been prostitutes since the beginning of time.
(Some people even view marriage as a form of prostitution if the tradeoff is the husband works but the wife doesn’t, but I don’t subscribe to that viewpoint.)
ESCORTS AREN’T WHAT THEY SEEM
She grew up in north Toronto in what she describes as a “close-knit and traditional” middle-class family.
…High-end escorts are, by and large, either full-time students or career women moonlighting for extra cash.
AND THE CLIENTS AREN’T ALWAYS WHAT THEY SEEM EITHER
Today, her regular client base consists largely of executive types (Bay Street lawyers and bankers predominate) ranging in age from 40 to late 60s, with wives and children safely ensconced in houses on leafy streets uptown.
A lot of guys who do this, aren’t doing it JUST for the sex, but to have a no-strings, hassle-free sort of relationship with a beautiful, educated, smart woman. Perhaps they see it as being cheaper than paying for a trophy wife.
They also say that escorts are for guys who are lonely, alone or isolated from their wives in their loveless/hectic marriages and/or they don’t know how to ask their wives for certain things.
How true this is, I don’t know, but if you’ve ever watched Chloë with Amanda Seyfried, Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore, you’d hear a similar story.
(Yes the movie was a drama but I liked it.)
IT’S QUITE A WELL-OILED BUSINESS
Most Toronto independents, like Chloë, operate their own Web sites and advertise.
Chloë pays her taxes on time every year.
On her tax return, she claims to be a freelance writer.
Her expenses—lingerie, makeup, clothing, electrolysis—are relatively low. She is teaching herself how to do her own Web design and recently had business cards made.
I guess she’s like a sex consultant.
HOW ESCORTING WORKS
Her work takes place almost entirely in high-end downtown hotels—the Hazelton, the King Eddie, the Park Hyatt—though she’s made calls to the Drake and the Gladstone, as well.
She worked hard, sometimes doing as many as five or six calls a night.
The article also mentions that women come from Vancouver and Montreal so the market is really saturated.
So let’s say if Chloe was booked every night, it would be $2600 x 365 = $949,000 a year.
But like most freelancers, she probably doesn’t get overnight bookings every day, so even 50% of that is a good wage.
People who work in the industry say there are roughly 50 out-call agencies operating in Toronto.
Agency escorts have for years operated openly and with minimal police interference simply because it isn’t cost effective for police to go after them.
THEY ALSO HAVE AGENCIES & COMPETITION
Higher end outfits in Toronto charge around $250 an hour, with the agency taking anywhere from 35 to 50 per cent.
Escorts here are a bargain compared to New York, where many agencies charge between $600 and $1,500 an hour.
$600 – $1500/hour is a lot of cash, but we also have to keep in mind this is not a 40-hour a week sort of job.
This is probably one or two hours a night, maybe 2 -3 clients at the most. Perhaps just one, so that the experience isn’t sullied or you lose your charm because you’re so tired from your other bookings.
So with NYC prices, I guess Toronto is really a bargain because if they work 3 hours a night, let’s say 3 nights a week for all 52 weeks of the year, that means it’s $280,800 to $702,000 a year charged by the agency.
Compared to Toronto, with Chloe charging $375/hour, it could be $175,500 a year earned, but here are her numbers in her words:
Since going independent two years ago, Chloë has been making between $70,000 and $90,000 a year, in cash.
Some months are better than others. For example, summers are notoriously dismal because clients go on family holidays.
For Chloë, last summer’s dry spell ended when a Saudi Prince flew into town and hired her for an overnight.
As for the agency owners, one of the more reputable owners in the city says he only clears $50,000 – $60,000 a year, so he holds a full-time job and has a wife and a family on the side.
Interesting read. You can read more about the whole industry and all the nitty gritty details here:
The Secret Life of a Bay Street Hooker (Toronto Life)
There is so much more to read, so please go to the article!!
LIKE WITH MODELING THERE IS A SHELF LIFE
The thing to keep in mind is that this doesn’t last forever.
No one wants to turn tricks well into their 40s, even 50s and there’s always the kind of shady feeling that goes with announcing this sort of business that you just can’t announce, or running into clients.
For Chloë, working and living in the downtown core means her two lives occasionally intersect.
Once she bumped into a regular client while he was shopping for produce with his wife in Kensington Market. The wife, she remembers, was attractive and elegant. “You should have seen the look on his face; I thought he was going to die!”
I wonder what they do then when their careers are over.
Perhaps they marry before giving up the life, although fake Chloe in Toronto, was already married with a couple of kids.
Could she give up a life like that? She seems to genuinely enjoy it.