321
8 min 26 sec

Student Gets Paid to Help People Rent Adventures

After feeling jealous over a friend’s boat outing, a San Diego student creates a sharing economy platform to connect adventurers with gear.
Power of Observation Service Sharing Economy Unique Ideas

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What It's About

Two students use an Airbnb business model to make adventure more accessible.

Business Model
Service
Skills Required
Power of Observation & Creativity
Complexity
Medium
Profit Potential
Medium

Words of Wisdom

Because of how nervous he was at the start, Dane spent a lot of time following every step of his customer's rental journey. But the insights he gained were valuable. Being able to see the pain-points and worries of people—both renters and customers—allowed him to mould his product to really meet their needs.

Fun Fact

Dane has created his entire business whilst working around a full-time college education and internships. Goes to show what you can do with the time you do have!

Notes from Chris

Episode 321
Checking his friend’s Snapchat stories one day, Dane Baker was overcome with jealousy. Some of his friends were out on a boat, catching the sun, diving in the water and sharing a few cold beers on what seemed like an incredible adventure. Naturally, Dane couldn’t help but feel he wanted a little of that for himself. But there was a problem: he didn’t have access to a boat, nor the funds to rent one in his hometown in San Diego.

Trying to shake the feeling, Dane headed outside for a walk, where he noticed his neighbour’s boat sat on the driveway. It hadn’t been used in months, and the owner rarely had time to go out on the water. Most of its life was spent just taking up space.

Dane thought to himself “What if there was a platform that connected people who had these cool rides to people who would want to rent them?” He headed home to do a little research to see if one existed and, much to his entrepreneurial delight, he found that one didn’t. So, he decided to create it himself.

He began to work from a model of AirBnB for adventure which he called Toyroom. He figured that most extreme and action sports equipment—snowboards, kayaks, and surfboards—all met the same fate as the boat he’d seen in the driveway, and decided to focus more of his idea on these smaller pieces of equipment, categorizing them into Water, Air, Snow, Road, and Sand.

Right now Toyroom generates between $700 and $1100 per month. The majority of his customers come from in and around Southern California, where he is able to make offline connections with people. But, Toyroom is also seeing customers and renters pop up in further away locations like Lebanon. Not a bad return for a 30 hour per month time investment!


MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

  • Toyroom: See what kind of adventures are available in your city on Dane's website!
  • Stripe & PayPal: The two payment processing platforms that Dane used to process rental fees
SEE ALSO:

Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,

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Resources

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Quote of the Day
"You can’t be afraid to go out on a limb, that’s where all the fruit is."
—Dane Baker #SideHustleSchool

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To infinity and beyond,

Chris Guillebeau