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Niche market opportunity I've been thinking about

Discussion in 'Business Discussion & Reviews' started by CarlMc, Mar 19, 2015.

  1. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    Not being the entrepreneur type, I just think about stuff and set it aside. This is one of those, but there might be money in it.

    At every single airport out there legally owned firearms are being confiscated because of inattention on the part of the owner. As well here in Washington State, there also exists a product that is legal in the state but not federally, and definitely not allowed where firearms aren't either.

    My thought was that a short term secure lock box service could be provided in the public areas of an airport, where ostensibly a flyer would secure their valuables (personal items, weapons, pot, and other things that aren't allowed on the plane) for the duration of their travel. When they return from their trip they simply retrieve their belongings and return to their regularly scheduled life. Personally, I'm not fond of being defenseless between my home and the airport.

    Rather than getting arrested or hassled unnecessarily by the local police (and most likely lose said valuables in the process) the TSA could simply point the flyer towards the lock box service, assuming that the TSA and local police would rather refer than undergo the extra hassle of detention and paperwork.

    A lot more thought has been given to the various ways of doing this profitably, but for someone looking for an opportunity, this seemed like a good idea.

    Thoughts?
     
    ZA_Survivalist likes this.
  2. solv3nt

    solv3nt Portland Well-Known Member

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    Do some airports have lockers lockers?
     
  3. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    I've never seen any. There used to be pre 9/11.
     
  4. solv3nt

    solv3nt Portland Well-Known Member

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    I think that the 9/11 thing is probably going to out a damper on things.
     
  5. Caveman Jim

    Caveman Jim West of Oly Springer Slayer 2016 Volunteer

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    There are some new lock boxes in our post office, they are right at the entrance and forgot to ask the PO attendant what they were for.... maybe tomorrow.o_O
     
  6. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    If the facility has an attendant who manages access, billing, and all that, then security gets better. Nothing is unattended. Also, being a private enterprise, confidence of non government is there.
     
  7. jrprich

    jrprich PNW Well-Known Member

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    I doubt the TSA or the Airports would allow local storage of unchecked items anywhere near the airport. They will likely be concerned about things that go BOOM and with good reason.
     
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  8. B5Ben

    B5Ben Boise Well-Known Member

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    Anyone can walk into the "unsecured" section of the airport with damn near anything they please. I don't see why it would matter. Sounds like a good idea. Whether or not there is money in it is has yet to be determined. I would guess you could always check your gun and leave the ammo in the car or something. You are then just hauling a paperweight around though.
     
  9. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    There were two ways I was thinking about addressing security concerns for things like explosives and the like. One was to have the flyer place the items in a container in in view of the attendant (possibly a photograph would be taken of the contents for claims and subpoena purposes) and the attendant would give a secure key to the flyer for their later retrieval. An automated system would photograph the contents before taking the container away, which can be viewed remotely. My concern with an automated or electronic method is that it can be easily gotten into by officials, while the attendant only cares that nothing obviously illegal or suspicious is stored.

    Ammunition shouldn't be a problem, since you can carry it in checked luggage just like your firearm (with obvious hassle involved.)

    If storage were strictly limited to firearms, it's hard to see the customer base being big enough in any but the largest airports in gun friendly areas, but if you expand it slightly to other items that might not be so TSA friendly, and keep the size of the container down to certain limits, then I think there's a case for it.

    This is a captive market, and you could probably charge a good chunk of money to desperate flyers (not that I want to overcharge, but it's the law of supply and demand) and even regular travelers who like to keep their EDC items close at hand when transiting the airport.
     
  10. solv3nt

    solv3nt Portland Well-Known Member

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    The liability is way too high, I have a hard time seeing anybody getting permission to check firearms in an airport. In order to check a firearm, you would have to unholster, unload, and then give it to someone else. After 9/11, I don't think that you'll be able to get that kind of permission at an airport. This is a little bit different than checking a firearm, as the firearm should already be unloaded and locked with the action open. Someone that forgot that they have their firearm is more than likely to have it loaded on their person or loaded in a bag.
     
  11. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    I just as soon leave the firearm in the holster, unmolested. Place it in the box, close the box, take the key (physical or digital) with you until you return. Anything else increases the risk of discharge. I guess that says that no firearm is allowed unless it comes in with a holster, and if they're too stupid not to have a holster, then you don't want them as a customer...

    These are details, for sure, but the idea is to minimize the touch time on any contents. The attendant should have absolutely no reason to touch the box contents.
     
  12. P7id10T

    P7id10T Cedar Hills Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Why not have a registered FFL representative at the airport present to collect the firearms from dumba$$e$, then they have to come to you to get it back (or you ship it to a FFL of their choice).
    Your security mechanism / lockbox would be under supervision of the TSA, you clear it out each night.
    There is a valid need, since the graduates of Universidad de Idiotes have far outstripped those graduating from Communi Sensui Collegium.
    Check which airports have the greatest number of firearms confiscated, focus on the top 5.
    Problem is, a lot of airports will not even look at you unless you are of a certain size or gross revenue.
     
  13. Liberty97045

    Liberty97045 Oregon City Well-Known Member

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    Don't think the locker idea would fly.
     
  14. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    Overall, or a part in particular? I expect these would be attended, not just lockers anyone can access, if that's where you're going.
     
  15. jbett98

    jbett98 NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    A true marketing genius in the 60's came up with a life insurance policy that you bought at the airline terminals were you boarded the plane.
    People that were scared of flying (dying) would pay a couple of bucks for the knowledge that their loved ones would be taken care of in case the plane went down.
    Rarely did the policies ever pay off, with no employee's and it sold itself to the nervous public and made the guy rich.

    DQVzs.jpg
     
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  16. Liberty97045

    Liberty97045 Oregon City Well-Known Member

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    1. I have not seen a self-serve locker in years. I doubt they would be allowed.
    2. Once the bureaucratic hurdles are overcome, the cost of the locker and the lease cost could easily be $20K+ the first year.
    3. The market is very small, most CC folks will either leave the gun locked in the car in long-term parking or will simply leave it at home.
    4. For those who forget until they are in the airport (I did once) there are UPS shipping centers at most airports.
    5. If you get scanned and they discover it, you are not ever getting it back.
    Something like this could work if it was off-site but the market would have to be much broader than concealed carry holders to make it pay.

    If you could make the market much broader it might work. The chances of getting anything weapon related approved in the this climate is unlikely.

    Sorry to rain on your idea.
     
  17. CarlMc

    CarlMc Safely north of Seattle Active Member

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    You're not raining. I was hoping there might be something I missed in the concept that would make it more sustainable.

    It is indeed a small market, but it's a market where your customers may not have a choice. In states where pot is legal (or depending on the setup, maybe not,) the incentive also exists, so I wouldn't limit the contents to firearms. It also needs cooperation of the TSA, who I would hope (FWTW) would rather refer the flyer to the business rather than go through the usual hassle of anything beyond a little paperwork.
     
  18. Liberty97045

    Liberty97045 Oregon City Well-Known Member

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    What about a UPS self-serve station or a drop box where people can send their stuff to themselves without hassle?

    A $5 or $10 surcharge per item. I am picturing a privacy booth (like a voting booth)

    Anyway, keep thinking. Mistakes prove that you are trying. . .
     
  19. Liberty97045

    Liberty97045 Oregon City Well-Known Member

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    Want a business? Build this!

    Shotgun-1911-670x447_zpscwkz9vuz.jpg
     
    solv3nt likes this.