A Japanese travel company named Unagi Travel is offering a vacation for your favorite toys. Without you.
If it sounds weird, it's because it is a little.
You basically choose a vacation destination (current options include Tokyo, Mystery and Hot Spring) then mail your stuffed toy to the company's Tokyo address. During the duration of the toy vacation, your beloved inanimate creature is assured to stay in touch with you by sending you daily Facebook photos of their trip. Once your toy is exhausted — and the images have been uploaded — you get your precious back. The whole process usually takes two to three weeks, plus shipping time.
Jokes aside, what’s the benefit of this “holiday” and who would be using this?
“This service appeals to hospitalized people, physically challenged people, busy people, and people who want to inspire their loved ones," Sonoe Azuma from the Unagi Travel Agency told me via email. “Kaba san (a stuffed hippo) has been traveling a lot with us, and Duffy Tan (whose owner is bound to a wheelchair) are some of my favorite animals.”
So basically, this allows those who can’t quite experience everything they’d like to live vicariously through their pet toy, and there's really no harm in that.
Not even to your toy.
“We will make sure not to have your stuffed animal injured or kidnapped. However, in case of any unfortunate missing incidence, we will compensate up to $100, U.S.” it says on their website.
The company has been around since 2010 so at least a few people don't mind dropping some cash on this.