Designated War Zone

WarZone

Over the last year I have noticed a lot of items increase in price, and some drastically like plane tickets. Increase of fuel prices have one part of it, then there are a lot of other factors and one that I never knew of. We are considered a War Zone which causes the cost of items coming to Kuwait to increase in price. One of the main factors is insurance, to insure items coming to Kuwait including the planes flying here have increased three fold. Thats is why shipping costs have increased drastically over the last few years. I bought four tires for my car and it cost 620 KWD when the same tires cost about 480 KWD the same time last year which is a drastic increase, and one of those increases sited was shipping as well as the shortage of rubber.

The List:

  • Egypt
  • Syria
  • Jordan
  • Lebanon
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Kuwait
  • UAE
  • Bahrain
  • Yemen
  • Iraq
  • Iran

Surprisingly Qatar is not on the list, and I do not know why some countries like Kuwait and UAE are on that list. With the way things are going we will never be off that list and some costs seem to keep going up instead of down. With all the floods and earthquakes asia has been facing there has been increases in pricing from cars & rubber to hard drives & electronics. I was wondering how countries get on this list and how to get off of it.

DHL Customs Disaster

Things have gotten very ridonkulous with Customs in Kuwait, everybody faced problems but I have never had a package stuck in the Ministry of Information for over a month and a half, and I only had Gears of War 3 and Toy Model in the box, nothing else. I kept calling DHL they keep telling me two days later again and again, it was a headache. The items arrived in Kuwait on September 16th, they said the items had to go to Ministry of Information since they shutdown their desk at the airport so they said that would take a 7 to 10 days, I said thats fine so 10 days went buy and nothing, then they told me a few days later it cleared then they said it would take another week in customs because of the mess they have. Then they were on Strike and I was told my package was lost and it would take a few more days to find it then a few days more to clear it.

It went on week to week like this, until I decided to go check in Customs and they said they never received any package back from MoI. I asked where it would be and went to MoI, and I found the items were still there and never taken back. It was a disaster, I basically went to so many different offices asking what they wanted and nobody knew. At one point I spoke to one sensible guy and told him you have had the package for a month and half and havne’t decided what you want to do with it. He spoke to another guy and signed a few random papers and gave the package to me. DHL don’t have a clue about it and I’m not paying them anything for it, I wanted to blow up and rip the guys at DHL to shreds but at that point I have my package and I’m not going to bother with them, but for over a month for a toy and video is ridiculous.

New Shipping Rules From Customs

A lot of us order lots of items from outside of Kuwait, and now with the arrival of the iPhone 4S people will be making a ton of orders to satisfy their Apple addiction, I for one am addicted to Amazon. Now things have gotten a lot worse then before with customs and I’m not sure if this will get any better.

Ministry of Information shutdown their desk at the Customs Airport Counter. So what does that mean, it means every package has to be taken from the Airport to the Ministry and checked out so the process was long before but now its even more ridiculous.

Previously:

  • 3-5 Days International Delivery
  • 3-5 Days Kuwait Customs Clear

Total 10 Days

Now:

  • 3-5 Days International Delivery
  • 3-5 Days Kuwait Customs
  • 4-7 Days Ministry Of Interior
  • 4-7 Days in Custom for the Delivery Company to Pick it UP

Total 24 Days

The Ministry of Information is going through to check what is or isn’t banned but they are going through everything and they don’t have a clue what anything is. I had a very difficult time explaining to them what Gears Of War 3 was, I don’t think they have seen a PS3 or XBox before.

Quick Update
Airport and Port Customs are on strike, good luck getting any of your packages any time soon.

Customs Going Overboard

ShippingKuwait

I have recently been complaining about package delays from Customs but it seems it has gone to another level. You can forget that half the people aren’t going to work because they have decided to strike until they get the salary of a CEO in a billion dollar investment company with all the benefits. There are new regulations in customs that EVERY package has to be searched and ANY media goes to ministry of information.

I spoke too soon about my limited edition Gears Of War 3, I should have just picked it up from here instead of the craziness that I now face with them. My package has been transfered to the Ministry of Information because they don’t trust my translation for video game and they said all media has to be searched by Customs not some. I thought customs was an issue before but this has been taken to another level, I went to the Ministry of Information to see what is going on. They told me that it takes 4 days to process and if its clear it is sent back to customs at the airport and then you clear it there. So basically another 7 to 10 days for the whole process to go through on top of the two and half weeks it has been in Kuwait. I will see what will happen next.

MyUS Quick Shipping

The one thing that we all live by is online purchases in my case I buy movies, electronics, hardware , books, and pretty much anything else that comes to mind. The only issue I have is when it gets stuck in customs, there were times that it would get stuck for weeks with Aramex and a few times they would lose my product which drove me nuts.

In this case I switched to MyUS and I was very happy with them, quick to reply always taking care of my shipments. I could combine items and ship certain items, and you get choices to ship through FedEx, DHL, or a combination.

After shipping so many different kinds of items through multiple ways I figured out that the best way is to ship through DHL in somewhat of medium to small size package. Sometimes I combined a lot of packages into one big package and that would get stuck for at least 10 days, and with Aramex the smallest packages take at least four days. Now with DHL & FedEx if I ship it in a more compact size even if its combined it flies under their radar and I get it out of customs the second day.

Aramex & More Shipping Insanity

Aramex

The last month of insane snow and cold in Europe and the US has shutdown airports and turned shipping into a logistical nightmare. I hear people complaining about not getting their items on time or not getting them at all. In my case its a mix of both, everyone from UPS to FedEX and the smaller shipping companies are facing issues in this weather and losing packages in the process. In my case one screen mount has been lost since it was delivered about two weeks ago to Aramex, I gave them the tracking number and hopefully it will reference something inside their system and they find it. Its been an annoying process but Christmas and New Years coming up means that there a lot less employees working meaning that they won’t find what they are looking for right away. I’m just hoping they find it soon as I would really like to mount my computer screens to the wall.

Currently Missing:

  • Screen Mount
  • Streetfighter Animation Book

I’m just hoping I get my things soon.

Delivery Holds

FEDEXPlane

Recently I have gone on a little online shopping spree getting a variety of items, from electronics to books. I sent some to Aramex and some to MyUS account, and even from MyUS I shipped some items through FedEx and some through DHL. I basically broke down the shipments to see what would get caught and who would get through.

It seems that people aren’t working in Customs currently because its too hot, so they are leaving the containers outside and still fully packed. All my items arrived in Kuwait but nothing was being delivered, I spoke to Aramex, DHL, and FedEX and they all gave me the same reason, currently nobody is looking at the containers and we have to wait for them to clear it. A day later a few items were cleared such as toys, video games, and print work.

Now what got caught was based on these details:

  • Anything heavier then 10 KG – (Netgear Server)
  • Electronics – (A Shaver)
  • Books – (Comic Book Art & Halo Art)

In Kuwait they are unpredictable and lazy, we have become even worse then Saudi. All the shipping people say its a nightmare to ship to Kuwait when even Saudi is getting more organized then us.

Super Aramex

In mailbox: 23/8/08

In Kuwait: 24/8/08

This really doesn’t make any sense, I have never seen something delivered this quick, let alone somebody to get from the US to Kuwait that fast. I saw the item arrive in my mailbox by the 23rd of August and I have it delivered by the 24th is nothing short of a miracle, I don’t know if this was a mistake or a few changes taking place but I hope it continues that way.