‘Get a job’: Outrage at couple’s $16k plea
A SOCIAL media influencer who admitted his mother funds his lavish lifestyle is now asking followers to help send him and his girlfriend on an overseas trip.
Catalin Onc and Elena Engelhardt launched a GoFundMe campaign with a target of €10,000 ($A16,315) so they can tandem cycle to Africa.
The German couple from Hessen, who have a combined Instagram page called Another Beautiful Day, told their 40,000 followers in a post getting a job would be "detrimental", and there weren't many jobs for which they were qualified.
But their "ridiculous" request has backfired with their followers being left completely furious.
"It has now come to the point again where we must ask for money in order to continue doing what we do," Catalin's post began.
"Some will just tell us to get jobs, like everyone else and stop begging. But when you have the impact we do on others' life, getting a job is not an option.
"We could model and make fast money, but we don't want to advertise consumerism. A normal job at this point would be detrimental."
FOLLOWERS TO FUND TANDEM AFRICA TRIP
On their GoFundMe page, the self-described "lovers, travellers, dream chasers", who spent time in Australia back in 2016, said the money they raised would go towards bike and gear hire, food and accommodation (when needed), internet and SIM cards in every country to keep (followers) up to date.
"We need funds now for preparation as well as throughout our trip," the page read.
"Every dollar, every message, every couch or garden for our tent, any help you can offer will help us go further.
"We hope you all enjoy and learn with us."
The couple's Instagram page shows a heavily tattooed Catalin and his girlfriend photographed in various locations around the world, including Bali, Italy, London and Paris
According to one of their posts, Catalin's mum is funding their globetrotting lifestyle by working two jobs.
"At this very moment, my mother is funding us, she works two jobs and has not much herself. We didn't ask her for money but she loves that she is able to help," the post read.
"Mom, I want you to know, that it is not only us but hundreds of others that benefit from your help."
The post then said during a recent trip to the Himalayas they decided it would be "selfish" not to stay on social media.
"After recently spending time trekking in the Himalayan mountains, learning about myself and seeing how others live, not returning to social media would have been selfish."
View this post on Instagram
Well, I do miss my baby a bit now. Haven't heard from him in 9 days. His family is already getting worried. I'm positive and sure he's well up there in the mountains around everest. Seems like I haven't seen him in ages but it's only been 6 weeks since he left Bali. I'll join him in Nepal end of May and we'll continue the adventure together. Not sure where exactly and how. Our savings will come to an end soon so it's going to be even more adventurous but I know the right opportunities will arise in due time. We're excited and ready for new challenges. Wish you all a great day! Photo by @oui.photo
Admittedly, Catalin said in another post "having tattoos, a pretty girlfriend and followers on Instagram opens doors for us, it's true".
"We could live a lavish lifestyle and only show that, like most people on social media do. We choose not to. We have seen how people are around us when we have money and when we don't," the post from five days ago read.
He went on to say some people are quick to judge and in this very moment "we don't have much" and are accepting money from his mother and also donations.
"But we don't hide that. This situation is teaching us a lot," Catalin told his followers.
However, their plea for monetary help hasn't come without backlash.
"Your mom works two jobs to pay for your trip, don't you think that's impacting her mental heath?" asked one follower on a post they shared about their GoFundMe page. "It's sad this isn't all a joke, the self importance you have is ridiculous."
Another person pointed out how the couple said they didn't want to model to raise money because it promoted"consumerism", but "modelling" was still in their bio.
"Honestly asking for money (when you have opportunities to earn it yourselves) to continue to provide content to your followers is still consumerism. I just don't get it. If I'm just not understanding when the 'mental health/climate change' support comes into play by tandem biking, then I'd love to understand," the follower asked.
She was referring to the couple's GoFundMe bio, which begins with the couple saying they could write a long text about mental health or global warming and tell people about following their dreams "or how important stepping out of your comfort zone is".
"We could tell you how beautiful travelling is, and it's benefits, or the fact that most news don't match reality - but we're going to show you! Less talking more action," the couple posted.
Others simply told the couple to "go get a job", while some fans continued to question their motives.
"I like you both a lot and been following your posts for a while now but I just don't really get how this helps people with mental health issues like myself? This just seems like an adventure and a fun trip for you both and it has no significant reason to help anyone else in anyway," said one follower.
Another follower said they too loved the couple but also "do not understand".
"I am depressed. I never go out of my house … being able to travel will literally save my life and that's the truth, but I will not dare to ask people to pay for my trips. And yet it will save my life."
Another commented: "I'm beginning to think your 'message' isn't very genuine anymore. It used to be, but the entire vibe has changed slowly."
Since setting up their GoFundMe eight days ago, the couple have raised $A130 - their goal is to raise $A16,315.
News.com.au has reached out to Caitlin and Elena for comment.