If you'e an entrepreneur, you see business opportunities everywhere. The end of the Mayan Calendar period known as the 13th Baktun, which takes place on December 21, has been interpreted by some mystics as the "end of the world." While it's clear that the world will be just fine, this supposed event has still managed to become a selling tool among businesses that are promoting specific products for doomsday 2012. So in case you're wondering, here are some of the most outrageous end-of- the-world services available to you.
Fallout Shelter Reservation
For those who feel inclined to take the doomsday threat seriously, real-estate agent Robert Vicino books spots in a 13,000 square nuclear fallout bunker facility that he has developed in the Arizona desert. It costs $5,000 for an adult and half price for children. Pets are free.
Originally built as an emergency government communications center during the Cold War, the facility can house 132 people in comfort for up to a year. Half the spaces are currently available.
If you think there is no way around world destruction and it's the sake of your soul you are worried about, there´s a product just for you. And with a 50% discount, too.
Russian site "Kupon Klub" sells indulgence tickets for $16. You only need one to cover all your sins. Each comes with a very sacred limited number that you will send by email to a church in Assisi, Italy, where monks will pray for the forgiveness of your sins. The profits will go to charity. Amen.
Last Minute Love Birds
Another business that's flourished is online dating. Whether it's spending weeks in a bunker or seconds in a catastrophic explosion, no one wants to see that last sunset alone.
Websites such as Survivalist Singles or Kwink offer doomsday believers an easy way to find someone as convinced as they are that there is no time to lose. Survivalist Singles, which charges $5 a month for membership, grew from 400 members at the end of 2010 to 1,640 by March 2012. Their slogan: "Don't face the future alone."
Many resorts in México's Riviera Maya and even some American hotels are offering special all-inclusive December 21 packages.
For example, the Rosewood Mayakoba Resort near Cancun offers the "Ultimate New Beginning" package with a private helicopter ride to two archeological sites, dinner on the beach and spiritual cleansing by a Mayan shaman for $79,000 per couple.
Can't afford that? How about a "Maya Awakening Package," at the Mahekal Beach Resort? The four-night stay at Mahekal includes spa treatments, a trip to the Mayan ruins of Cobá and a purifying dive in one of the Yucatan peninsula´s natural underground waterholes, and costs $1,162.
In San Diego The Keating offers an "End of the world" package with "last chance" relaxation treatment, fitness classes for gearing up to outrun possible zombies, as well as a "last super" for $666 per person. Hotel Lucia in Portland sells an ultimate December 21 midnight bungee jumping trip to leave this earth in a rush of adrenaline, while the Curtis Hotel in Denver is throwing a Mayan party with tattoo artists, gas masks, anti-radiation tablets and free freeze-dried food.
Last but not least, what would be the craziest product you could launch before doomsday? An insurance policy, of course.
The 2012 Apocalypse Insurance Company covers almost every scenario: alien invasion, planet collision, reversal of the Earth´s magnetic poles nuclear Armageddon, you name it. This is "provided this event occurs on December 21, 2012." The insurance is actually a prank. But for $10 you can have your very own certificate, printed in full color, uniquely numbered. You'll also get an exclusive "2012: You're insured!" folder and a copy of the 2012 Apocalypse Insurance Policy.
Throw in an extra $20 and they will send you a limited edition, "2012: I am insured, ARE YOU?" t-shirt or hat. Now that's a must-have at your 2012 doomsday party.