Involuntary Reroute!!! (The Initial Reroute Book 1)
Involuntary Reroute tells the story of author Robert Laney’s delve into the travel industry at the young age of nineteen. As an entrepreneurial major at Babson College, Laney decides to help his mother start a business. As the owner of a travel agency in the 1980s, Robert’s mother has had plenty of experience owning and running a business. The book explains the many pitfalls that Robert and his mother find themselves in. Laney explains, “Since the early days of air travel, airlines have offered their agents and agency owners 75 percent discounts from full first-class fares.” This is the big idea behind Robert’s business. He decides to start a travel agency and find investors in the company who will become part owners. Of course the perk to the owner/investors would be that seventy-five percent discount on travel. The business starts off with a bang. Not only would the owners get the discount, but whoever held those tickets were eligible to fly first class regardless if they were the owner or not.
Laney repeatedly states that the seat on an airplane is only worth as much as someone is willing to pay for it. Thus, there are loopholes in the airlines that allow people to get tickets for less because they are trying to get paid for as many seats as possible. If there is an empty, unpaid seat, the airline gets paid nothing.
Although everything about this business sounds legitimate on paper, Robert finds himself in hot water many times during his entrepreneurial endeavor. The first problem is his company doesn’t have an airline ticket license. Because of this, he finds himself trying to buy companies that have this license to partner with them. Because of greedy business partners, he finds himself in a slue of sticky and uncomfortable situations that feel like they could take his business down in a heartbeat.
I really enjoyed reading Involuntary Reroute. When I first started reading the book, I thought it was going to be a book about how to obtain discount airline tickets. This is actually a book for entrepreneurs, however, and Robert shares both his failures and successes in a very candid way. Sometimes, while reading the book, it was hard to remember that Robert was only a college kid when he did all this. Knowing that makes this story an even greater and more inspirational one. The biggest takeaway for entrepreneurs is to never give up. Find people to help you and when something falls through, have other ideas on hand to keep it going. Being an entrepreneur takes grit. Robert also gives insight into the sketchy inner workings of the airlines and how they determine fares. With online sites like Expedia and Orbitz, most travel agents are out of a job, however, knowing that airline prices are never set in stone can help the average Joe get a good deal on a ticket, maybe even in First Class.
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