I’ll confess to being one of those travelers slightly mystified by Sky Mall.
I’ve neither purchased anything from the catalog (or Web site) nor been tempted to, and I have always wondered just who does buy a lot of this stuff. I mean, who gets it in his head at 38,000 feet to pony up for a brand new table top photo studio (from $79.95-$99.95)?
Sky Mall devotees, who I hear are legion, cite the convenience factor. O.K., I can understand that. It’s just that so much of the stuff on sale seems so…unnecessary, in terms of an in-flight catalog. Perfume? Sure. Booze? Absolutely! Special chocolates, a funny T-Shirt, a travel alarm clock? All reasonable, I guess.
The folks over at GraphJam seem to have similar, um, thoughts about Sky Mall, and they’ve come up with this nifty merchandise breakdown for consumers. They conclude that 30.5 percent of Sky Mall merchandise is overpriced junk (I have to agree), while 18 percent of the merchandise is comprised of products that address a problem that does not exist. Another 18 percent is useless crap.
I would have combined the last two, thus concluding that 36 percent of Sky Mall merchandise is useless crap designed to address problems that do not exist. Or, even better, 66.5 percent of Sky Mall merchandise is overpriced junk and useless crap designed to address problems that do not exist. Yeah, that works.
GraphJam concludes that only a scant 0.5 percent of all Sky Mall products are actually useful and reasonably priced.
The jewelry spa is not an example.