A new work space option has debuted in New York’s LaGuardia airport, offering a different kind of privacy than traditional business lounges.
The company behind the design is called Jabbrrboxes, and has created a pod-like structure that can be reserved in 15-minute increments for whatever discreet purpose one might need.
‘The idea [is] an on-demand, reservable eco-system of private spaces,’ co-founder Jeremy Jennings told CNN Travel.
The booths include WiFi, USB charging, adjustable lighting, flight trackers and audio speakers.
New company Jabbrrboxes has brought booths with WiFi, USB charging, adjustable lighting, flight trackers and audio speakers to LaGuardia airport in New York; Co-founders Brian Hackathorn (center), Jeremy Jennings (right) and CTO Andrew Southern (left) are seen here
The concept was born when co-founder Brian Hackathorn found himself in the middle of Manhattan and in need of making a confidential business call, with no quiet place to conduct it.
‘Technology is related to mobility and there’s really no great place to find privacy in technology,’ Jennings said.
Hackathorn felt like the usual option of a coffee shop wouldn’t work because it was too loud, and he couldn’t speak freely about sensitive issues, and wished he had a better option.
The concept was born when co-founder Brian Hackathorn found himself in the middle of Manhattan and in need of making a confidential business call, with no quiet place to conduct it
For anyone thinking they might feel too confined the amount of space provided, the founders specifically said they incorporate extra space so users would be comfortable
The idea for a space where you could access technology in a more isolated environment naturally seemed to lend itself to air travel.
‘We started looking at the airport demographic, as one of the largest places of our captured audience, a mobile worker, a professional traveler that’s always on the go,’ Hackathorn said.
The booths have been touted as ‘a great enhancement to the travel experience’ by Mitch Nadler, the director of commercial development and operations for LaGuardia Gateway Partners.
‘They’re very popular, we see it as we walk through the terminal, we see the usage, we see people stopping in their tracks in amazement that there’s this opportunity and option for them out by the gates,’ Nadler said.
One might think lounges already had the issue of the need for privacy during air travel covered, but apparently not, since the highest use of Jabbrrboxes at LaGuardia has been just outside the terminal’s business lounges.
A traveler is shown here walking past a Jabbrrbox in New York’s LaGuardia airport
‘[Lounges are] a great place for certain amenities, but you still can’t find true privacy, a place to do focused work. So I think we’re a great extension,’ Hackathorn added.
‘[Users] can go out of the lounge, use a Jabbrrbox, and then go back into the lounge for their free cocktail and a place to sit. So I think it’s truly an adjacency.’
At the moment, Jabbrrboxes can be accessed for $10 for 15 minutes, $15 for 30 minutes and $30 for an hour.
For anyone thinking they might feel too confined the amount of space provided, the founders specifically said they incorporate extra space so users would be comfortable.
The window design may help with that feeling, too, although it does decrease the level of privacy. To work around that, the entrepreneurs are developing screens to shield users from other passing by.
At LaGuardia, the work spaces are only available in Terminal B for now, which serves Air Canada, Southwest, United and American Airlines.
Jabbrrboxes are also being tested outside of airports, in cities around the world.
According to the company’s website, the self-contained workplaces are being piloted in Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston and Washington, DC.
International test sites include London, Seoul, Hong Kong and Sydney.
Jabbrrboxes are also being tested outside of airports, in cities around the world