Okay, so there have been some bonehead business ideas.  The Microsoft “Kin” phone, which was supposed to be an iPhone killer, but lasted all of about 4 weeks.  When Dell decided to fire the Dell Dude and get rid of that ad campaign, because he was caught with marijuana.  Spirit Airlines wanting to charge for carryon baggage.  Ryan Air wanting to install pay toilets and standing-only “seats” to pack more people on to flights.

But this one mostly takes the cake.  UPS wants to start sending your luggage to your destination instead of you taking it on the airplane.  And not just your luggage, but actual cardboard throwaway boxes.  You pack your stuff in them, they’re not as protected as if they were in a real suitcase.  You have to pack and send them out WAY in advance, because if you send them the same day, you might as well plan on vacationing with no clothes or necessities.  And just think of the extra carbon being created, extra fuel being wasted, etc because you chose to send via UPS instead of in the belly of the plane.

But here’s what gets me.  A quote from the article:

She conceded that airlines can usually deliver luggage faster than UPS but said luggage shipped by UPS can cost $30 to $80 less per package, depending on the route and the weight of the box.

$30 to $80 less?  Per package?  I mean hell; if you don’t have status, first bag is usually $25.  Second bag another $25 so $50 in fees total.  The plane goes with you to the airport, goes through fewer hands (and thus is harder to lose – and less options for it to be stolen), arrives with you at your destination, and is ultimately convenient.  No packing a week ahead of time.  What, when you use this service, you pack your stuff, then realize that the weather is going to be drastically changed, but you’re going to be stuck with jackets and skis when all the snow will be melted and you’ll want shorts when you show up.  Is that how it goes?

Oh but there will be suckers that fall for it.  There’s one born every minute.

By walterh

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