Feeling lonely? Fancy a natter about your day? For the price of a bottle of wine you can hire a friend. You may think it sounds desperate, but half a million members of rentafrined.com would disagree.

With Britain’s single-person households at 9.5 million and growing, it’s no wonder the friendship website, launched in the US, is gaining traction in the UK.

The site facilitates connections between members and friends. For £15 (R270) a month members have thousands of potential friends at their fingertips. “Friends” create a Facebook-esque profile for free and charge members between £5 and £30 for the privilege of their company.

No physical contact is allowed.

In the UK alone there are 26 000 users and over half a million other members in almost every country around the globe.

The platonic friendship business is also booming in Brazil, Canada and the US.

And unsurprisingly, big cities like London and Chicago are hubs of rental activity.

Members choose a friend by pursuing the many profiles, where the friends describe themselves and post pictures, and then send their preferred companion a message. The friend then decides whether they want to meet the member and hence the platonic liaison begins.

People use rentafriend.com for activities including shopping, sightseeing, baking and even finding a wingman or woman to help pick up a date. – DailyMail