The price of crude has been steadily climbing and that has led to many industries suffering the gas price pinch. One of the most tragic is the brothel industry, which relies heavily on customer traffic from truck drivers in isolated, rural areas.

A report by the Associated Press brings the brothel crisis to light, by explaining that Nevada is the only state where whorehouses or brothels are legal. Even still, they are only allowed in 10 of the state’s 17 counties, none of which include Las Vegas or Reno.

These remote brothels are trying to get creative with new promotions in order to combat the 25% decline in business they have seen as compared to this time last year. Diesel fuel costs now average $4.70 a gallon, up 67.5% since last year. That increase has hurt the wallet’s of the truck driving customer base, many of whom are independent driver paying for their own gas.

An owner from the “Shady Lady Ranch” has begun offering $50 gas cards to customers who spend $300 at his establishment and $100 gas cards to those who go ‘the extra mile’ and fork over $500. Champagne room, anyone?

Also, check out this deal “the recession special” – 45 minutes of ‘services’ will offered for $175, compared to the previous price of a flat $200. Good deal, right?

The famous “Moonlite Bunny Ranch” in Carson City (pictured with owner Dennis Hof) made the wildly popular offer of allowing the first 100 customers producing their tax rebate stimulus check to receive twice the services for the same price. The offer is being called the ‘double your stimulus’ deal. Brilliant!

Interestingly, it seems that only the brothels that rely on truck drivers are being hurt by this recession. Across the state at “Sue’s Fantasy Club” in Elko, business is booming driven by the local mining and gold price increases.

According to the AP, the high prices of gas and groceries have caused more women to join the brothel industry too. Unable to ‘pay the bills’ with other local jobs, the brothels are becoming the big employment draw. I guess that’s good news? I’m not really sure what the ‘talent’ is like out there. But judging from this accompanying AP image, I’m not too enthused about making a trip in that direction.

I think the best way to end this post is with a quote from the article by Geoffrey Arnold, president of the Nevada Brothel Owners’ Association:

“The customers won’t be spending as much, but the brothels will still be there,” he said. “After food, the most important activity, at least for men, is sex. Sex is not going away.”

Not sure if I can really provide much evidence on the contrary. It is the world’s oldest profession, right?

AP: High Fuel Prices Put Pinch On Nevada Brothels, June 29, 2008