Young Chinese are making morning calls a lucrative business

Could a sweet voice from a human ease your daily battle of getting out of bed in the morning? For most young Chinese, the answer is yes, as “human morning call” has emerged as a new service that is a salvation for many suffering from morning misery.

In fact, many have already sensed the business opportunity from people who have problems getting up early (known as Zao Qi Kun Nan Hu), and China’s e-commerce platform Taobao turns out to be the place where you can find some unusual services like this one.

It is reported that there have been dozens of merchants providing a wake-up call service with over 54,000 people searching “human morning call” on the online marketplace in 2021. Some shops saw up to 1,000 orders within a month, showing a great demand for such a service.

The price of the service ranges between 5 to 15 RMB ($0.79 to $2.36) per call, with a higher cost for earlier time slots, while weekly and monthly package services are available at the cost of dozens and hundreds of RMB respectively. Like a phone alarm buzzer, a snooze call is also part of the service, with a second call following a few minutes later.

It is also understood that a test call is available for consumers so they can choose the gender of the caller and voice type they find appealing enough to get themselves out of bed more easily.

Based on comments left by customers and shop owners on Taobao, people who habitually have difficulty in getting up, those who need to be up early for exam preparation, and those who have early interviews or morning flights, are the three main sources of consumers.

This demand has also brought out opportunities for those early birds. Most of the morning callers working part-time for shops on Taobao are university students and some are in the early stages of their careers, with an attractive voice being a shared trait.

The service has so far been well-received by customers, with the hashtag #HumanMorningCalls garnering over 22,000 views on Xiaohongshu and more than 256,000 relevant notes on this lifestyle-sharing platform. Customers not only enjoy the unusual way of being woken up but are also flattered by callers’ considerate chatters. From the weather forecast, reminders to wear a mask, and bringing their ID card for those who are heading to interviews, the thoughtful touch has helped to truly win over those who often sleep in.


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