Thursday, June 3, 2010

Flying Pets and the Airlines that Love Them

Every now and then Howtomakeadollar likes to link to real businesses that make money by coming up with unusual services. Usually we do this to inspire you and help get you into an entrepreneurial spirit, but today we are doing something a little different. Today we are discussing a company called Pet Airways. The website is

I am only about 70% certain that this is a real company. I have to admit up front that this could be some kind of hoax. I really don't know if its a real thing or not. However, the website is just realistic enough that I lean toward it being real. I'm skeptical, but we live in a crazy world, and I think it is for real. There are other sites that confirm the existence of Pet Airways, and these sites do not seem to be joking.

There really isn't much that can be said about Pet Airways. Its an airline that is exclusively dedicated to flying people's pets around the country. You stick your pet in a carrier, drop it off at the Pet Airways terminal, and they fly it to whatever destination you have booked for it. You aren't allowed to fly with your pet. It is for pets only.

Now this is all well and good. I suppose if you have enough money and you have a pet that you love dearly, and you happen to be going on vacation in one of the few cities that Pet Airways services, then maybe you would consider putting your pet on the airplane. Of course, regular airlines also provide this service, but maybe you want your pet to have the added benefit of flying first class, and the other airlines just don't offer that for you. Seriously. Pet Airways claims that your pet will "have a first-class travel experience."

Is a first class travel experience really necessary for your pet? Thats your decision to make. Maybe you really want your beloved Shih Tzu to have the benefit of riding with other people's pets in first class, where he can party with a cage full of canaries and some rabbits. Maybe after a few designer chew toys he will get confident and hit it off with an attractive Pomeranian female. That is your decision. People may laugh at you, but whatever. As a consumer you are entitled to buy whatever services you want, and no one will stop you.

Putting accidental mile high designer breeds aside, Howtomakeadollar is more interested in the business end of things. Namely, we are interested in profitability. It is a well known fact that the airline industry is constantly going bankrupt and is subsidized heavily by the government just to remain in operation. If Pet Airways is profitable, and I have serious doubts that it is, then surely it opens up a whole new world of entrepreneurial possibilities. If a pet airline can be profitable while human airlines go bankrupt, then surely other ridiculous ideas can be profitable too. This is where you come in.

1. Think up something silly that you can't imagine anyone ever buying, such as glow in the dark lightbulbs.
2. Find a way to apply your ridiculous idea to an industry that is already failing.
3. Good. now you've done something similar to Pet Airways. Lets hope it works for you.

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