'Hotel Influenza' Will Pay You $3500 to Come Get the Flu

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iStock

Miami Beach. The Caribbean. Cabo. All of these vacation spots may sound appealing, but they can cost thousands. Why not plan a getaway where your hotel not only pays your travel expenses but also gives you a little extra just for coming?

Thanks to St. Louis University’s Center for Vaccine Development, now you can. The only catch? You’ll be purposely exposed to influenza. And most sightseeing is out, since you’ll be quarantined.

As Forbes reports, the university just announced that it has converted part of its on-campus hotel into a research hub for flu. “Guests” of “Hotel Influenza” will be paid volunteers in a human challenge study that aims to evaluate the efficacy of vaccines. Rather than follow subjects in the real world who may or may not contract the virus, the center will make sure of it, exposing occupants to germs and then evaluating their response. Researchers are offering $3500 to cover each volunteer's travel expenses, leaving the rest as compensation for marinating in their own snot.

That exposure doesn’t necessarily guarantee they’ll experience flu symptoms. If a guest happens to have been treated with a working vaccine rather than a placebo, they might not get sick, and can pass away the time in the center’s modest quarters, which include catered meals and a common room with a television. If they do fall ill, 24-hour medical care will keep their discomfort to a minimum. Owing to the risk of transmission, they won’t be allowed to leave until they stop shedding the virus. The typical duration of stay is about 10 days.

The center is hoping this kind of targeted research will help improve seasonal flu vaccines with a long-term goal of developing a universal vaccination that can cover multiple strains of flu. Organizers expect a pilot study will be up and running within the next six months.

There will only be 24 slots available, so be sure to book early.

[h/t Forbes]

Locana, Italy Is Paying Families $10,000 to Move There

Not long after Sambuca, Italy enticed people to move there with $1 houses, a different quaint Italian village is offering an even better deal. People reports that Locana, a town located in the Italian Alps, will pay you $10,300 over three years to move there—but the catch is that you have to have at least one child.

Locana is one of many towns in rural Italy that has seen its population age and decline in recent decades. There are roughly 1500 residents in Locana today compared to the 7000 that lived there a century ago, and with 40 deaths and only 10 births per year, the downward trend isn't stopping.

By paying people, specifically families, to move to town, Locana mayor Giovanni Bruno Mattiet hopes to rebuild the community and renew hope for its future. A new population of young people would help keep Locana's school open (the institution comes close to shutting down each year). New residents can work remotely, but Mattiet also welcomes them to take over one of the dozens of defunct shops, bars, and restaurants in town.

Candidates can be foreigners or Italian residents, and they should make a salary of at least $8000 a year. When they're not working, they can partake in the many activities the Gran Paradiso mountain reserve has to offer, such as rock climbing, ice skating, and fishing.

If for some reason getting paid to move to a picturesque town in the Italian Alps isn't your thing, similar offers are sometimes made in the U.S. Last year, both Tulsa, Oklahoma and Vermont lured remote workers with $10,000 checks.

[h/t People]

This Is Not a Drill: Oscar Mayer's Wienermobile Needs New Drivers

Tim Boyle, Getty Images
Tim Boyle, Getty Images

The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile has had many navigators over its 83-year history, including performers and a race car driver. Now, the Oscar Mayer company is looking for a new generation of 'hotdoggers' to get behind the wheel of the iconic ride.

KSDK reports that applications are being accepted for the one-year position now through January 31. Hotdoggers tasked with commandeering the Wienermobile will be responsible for doing media interviews and appearing at grocery store, military, and charity events across the country. The position is primarily a PR job, and candidates with a BA or BS in public relations, journalism, communications, advertising, or marketing are preferred.

Carl Mayer, the nephew of Oscar Mayer, introduced the first Wienermobile in 1936, and today there are six vehicles on the road making 1400 stops a year. After disappearing for a couple decades, the Wienermobile was revived in 1986 for its 50th anniversary. Oscar Mayer hires 12 new hotdoggers each year and usually receives more than 1000 applications.

The job comes with benefits and a competitive salary in addition to the impressive title. The new hires must be ready to hit the road in June of this year; for a shot at becoming Oscar Mayer's next Wienermobile driver, mail or email your resume [PDF] by the end of the month.

[h/t KSDK]

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