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New site offers scheduling for prepaid meetings
By Anna Marie Kukec | Daily Herald Columnist
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Published: 9/24/2010 12:01 AM

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Web developer Jason Andrew of Naperville has launched, an online booking and scheduling system that helps small business owners and others book client meetings and get paid for their time, regardless of whether the client shows up.

Payment by credit card is required in advance to discourage canceled appointments and lost time. The site also requires that business people, who subscribe to the service, have a PayPal account. A subscription to Booktime is $29.95 for a three-month trial and $79.95 for a year.

"In this economy with all these freelancers and small businesses, customers are not keeping their appointments, and they're dealing with cash flow and check problems. It's been hard," said Andrew.

He said he knows what no-shows are like. He had an accounting business, which is now closed. provides a portal where a business person, in any profession, can schedule a meeting for, say, an hour regardless of location. If the client doesn't show up, the business person still gets paid.

In fact, the customer cannot add more appointments to the schedule unless he or she pays in advance.

Also, the site is available through Facebook, Twitter and other networks, offering global reach and high-definition video for face-to-face meetings, Andrew said.

He said the site allows business people to easily book meetings, and then focus on their business instead of losses and no-shows.

"It shows your potential clients you take your time seriously," Andrew said.

Surfing: Lincolnshire-based lawyers Dean R. Hedeker and Anthony R. Perrelli have launched, a do-it-yourself legal site for Illinois residents needing basic estate planning documents, including a will, living will, powers of attorney and other forms. People can buy the form they need, fill it out and the lawyers will review it for accuracy.

• Lightbank, the Chicago-based venture fund behind Groupon, is offering $5,000 to find an outstanding Web designer in the Chicago area and beyond. If the winner is from this area, they get another $1,000. For details, visit

• Chicago-based offers an online marketplace for health insurance and other information.

• Intertek, which has operations in Oak Brook, Arlington Heights and Romeoville, has launched two iPhone mobile digital apps for instant access to industry information by consumer goods testing, inspection and compliance professionals. They're free at the Apple App Store.

• Follow Anna Marie Kukec on LinkedIn and Facebook and as AMKukec on Twitter.