Zurich drive-in brothel “sex-boxes” hailed a success.
It’s been a year since Zurich, Switzerland, installed drive-in “sex-boxes” to improve safety for sex workers, and now authorities are hailing the program as a success.
Attracted by the prospect of on-site social workers and security (and no pimps), prostitutes agreed to relocate from a popular strip in downtown Zurich to the wooden, car-sized boxes just outside the city. Onsite amenities include a panic button in each “box,” laundry, showers and a cafe, the Agence France-Presse reports.
On average, 15 prostitutes can be found working nightly at the publicly funded sex boxes, where clients — who must be alone — drive in, cruise the facility and select a sex worker, who then gets in the car and has the client park in one of the monitored boxes.
“The new regulation of street prostitution has attained its objectives of protecting the population and the sex workers,” the city said in a statement.
Social services said that, as well as protecting sex workers, few neighbours were bothered by the comings and goings at the drive-in, in the Altstetten district.
No increase in street walkers had been noticed in the two other districts of the city where prostitution was tolerated, they said.
“The first year of the service has been positive,” Zurich social services said.
How the drive in brothels in Switzerland are used
Customers will “drive up one at a time along a lane reminiscent of fast-food drive-thrus” between the hours of 7pm and 5am, according to Meritall Mir of GlobalPost.
“Along the way, they’ll negotiate fees and services with one of up to 40 sex workers,” Mir continues. “Once an agreement is reached, they’ll join the prostitutes in a car-wash style box to complete the transaction.”
The prostitutes themselves use a ticketing machine to pay a “stand fee” for the brothel’s facilities. They pay this at a ticketing machine.
The customer and the prostitute then drive to a covered area where they complete the transaction.”
There are a variety of rules to keep the situation at the “sex boxes” safe and sanitary. These are explained in the sign.
However, the authorities admit that not everyone is happy.
Some sex workers complain that their earnings have fallen and that they are too far from city-centre bars and nightclubs.
And running the drive-in – which has cost around €2m (£1.59m) to set up – has proved more expensive than originally thought.