Markets in everything yes this is real

by on April 21, 2009 at 6:10 am in Economics | Permalink

Petairways:

Each time pets move anywhere, from the Pet Lounge to the pet limo or
from the pet limo to the plane, we track and record their progress,
which means you can monitor your pet’s journey every step of the way
online at Pet Airways Pet Tracker.
Our Pet Airways Promise is that your pet will never be left alone. A pet attendant will always be within a cat's meow.

The airline is for pets only and they are called "Pawsengers."  Here are some price comparisons.  Here is something akin to a frequent flyer club.  The crew aside, humans are not even allowed to fly in the cargo hold.  Here is their blog, which includes a clip from FoxNews.  I was convinced this was not real but the brilliant John dePalma, the original source of the reference, sends along this BBC story:

The airline has scheduled its first flight for cats and dogs for 14
July and will serve five US cities – New York, Washington DC, Chicago,
Denver and Los Angeles(…)The flights will be made in 19-seat turbo-prop planes operated by
Suburban Air Freight, which have their seats removed to make space for
the pet carriers.

Momster Cat April 21, 2009 at 6:41 am

I’ve always wanted to meet “The Aristocats” and I’ve heard that Paris in the spring is nice, so is anyone willing to pay to fly Momster there?

anon April 21, 2009 at 9:07 am

Just guessing that Eric doesn’t own a pet.

About 5 years ago a friend told me that she spent $2500 on surgery for her cat. I asked her if she was crazy….

Then a couple of years ago I got 2 small dogs. When one of them was seriously injured I had no problem spending $2000, and would probably not have cut off the money until close to $5000. I still can’t believe it, but I would do it again in a instant. And I consider myself pretty frugal.

For many people, especially those who are single and older, your pet becomes a constant companion, one that always treats you like you’re the king or queen of the universe, and in the case of dogs, they are usually delighted to be around you. And I have yet to meet a dog or cat owner who doesn’t talk with their pet. Just ask.

So I can understand how flying your pet around to be with you for some pet owners is more of a “Of course I do.” rather than a “How stupid.” When I travel I leave my dog with friends and family, and they are thrilled to have him. But I’m always glad to get home.

Jen (SLC) April 21, 2009 at 9:42 am

Like John said, it can be a pain to transport pets via airplane. I’ve flown with my dog on Delta. Since he’s too big to go under the seat, he was transported in the cargo hold. Airlines don’t have the best safety records for transporting pets, so it can be stressful to have to do this. This is actually not the first pet airline, and I’m not sure that there’s enough of a market to actually support a pet airline that flies its own planes.

Shae April 21, 2009 at 12:14 pm

My aunt was married to an Army man and had to move to Germany from America with her cats. If I’m not mistaken they were flown under the main part of the plane in a cargo hold.

I remember imagining how terrifying it must be for animals to be in a cramped, dark place for over 8 hours with no explanation of what’s going on. I remember thinking if this had been my only choice I might have given my cats away rather than put them through it.

Mr. Econotarian April 21, 2009 at 3:30 pm

Add me to the list who would fly their dogs bicoastally – it would be a wash on boarding, and the grandparents want to see their grand-dogs.

Jacob T. Levy April 21, 2009 at 6:45 pm

Count me as one who thinks there’s obviously a market here– indeed one of my occasional “why doesn’t anybody do this?” ideas has been the occasional dedicated flight on which pets could rise in the cabin regardless of size. (Let everyone know in advance; non-pet-accompaniers could fly the route too but would be aware that there would be a large number of animals aboard; run a couple flights per week on hub-to-hub routes.) For serious pet people, the possibility of not having a pet fly cargo is worth a *lot.* And the fares here are cheap, considering that people pay $75-100 each way to carry on small pets now.

dz April 22, 2009 at 12:57 pm

would this strike me as ballardian even if he wasn´t on my mind right now? I think so.

Libertarian Girl April 22, 2009 at 3:50 pm

It seems obvious to me that while you’re a great economist, you’re missing out on one of the great joys in life, having a pet.

I’ve flown with dogs in the cabin of a plane, and it’s incredibly expensive. The last time I did this, my seat cost $129 (Raleigh to Fort Lauderdale on Delta). My dog’s “seat”– AKA the ability for me to put her in a tiny dog carrier on the floor under the seat in front of me– cost $80 each way, or $160, plus I had to have a veterinarian sign off on a form which costs an office visit. Continental charges $90, and Southwest and other carriers don’t take pets at all.

Yes, taking my little six-pound dog and buying wight inches for her under a seat cost me more than my own seat on the plane! And yes, dogs are required to have a doctor’s visit before going on a plane while people aren’t.

To me, that’s ludicrous and it’s why I’m probably going to drive everywhere from now on. I would consider this in a minute.

Libertarian Girl April 27, 2009 at 12:51 am

Wayne, how would that problem be any different than taking your dog for boarding, or leaving them at the vet for surgery all day, or taking your child to daycare? Much of what we buy/purchase we can’t directly witness (who wants to know how McDonald’s gets that meat so cheap??) and yet for the most part, it works the way it’s supposed to or the customer finds out.

Betty August 22, 2009 at 11:08 am

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

Betty

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