A brothel in Berlin has come up with a way to skirt around the impact of the global economic crisis, and target a new group of customers at the same time - by offering a discount to patrons who arrive on bicycles.

"The recession has hit our industry hard," said Thomas Goetz, owner of the "Maison d'envie" brothel. "Obviously we hope that the discount will attract more people," he added. "It's good for business, it's good for the environment -- and it's good for the girls."

Customers who arrive on bicycle, or who can prove they took public transportation, can get a 5-euro (4 pounds) discount from the usual 70-euro ($100) fee for 45-minute sessions, Goetz said. He noted that the environmentally friendly offer was working.

"We have around 3 - 5 new customers coming in daily to take advantage of the discount," he said, adding the green rebate has helped lessen traffic and parking congestion in the neighbourhood.

Germany is one of the few countries in the world where prostitution is legal. It has around 400,000 prostitutes who have been granted formal labour contracts since 2002.

[via Yahoo]