Karin Kloosterman
Sustainable news for Israel and the Middle east

Israelis like to move it

Ring at the door. It was a package from China and my harebrained attempt to get it to Israel in time. But I had to circumvent Israel and ship to Canada. The Chinese company wouldn’t ship to Israel. There was no one to speak with.

“Send it back, it’s a scam… screamed my mom to my dad when the delivery arrived in Canada.” It was addressed to me but I’d forgotten to notify my parents of the parcel and the incoming duty they’d have to pay. I’d also forgotten to mention that they’d need to ship it back east to Israel. Bad kid. But I am busy.

It seems insane that it takes days and sometimes $100 or more to ship a small item from the top of Israel to the bottom. But international shipping? It’s complicated. Israelis like to move it in the car and public transportation space with companies like Waze and Moovit.

Israelis are not shy to moving stuff. Zim, one of the top international freightliner shipping companies has long contributed to the Israeli economy.

But what about the in-between? If you want to ship smaller packages and other stuff? As my tastes change and I start to support sustainable sites like Etsy and eBay for buying stuff, it’s always the big question of how does it get shipped? Some companies ship to Israel. Some do not.

So I started looking around for options beyond the flailing postal service.

There is Shiply, a UK company, which seems like the best option for moving stuff internationally. They connect to hundreds and thousands of shipping services from cars to specialty trucks and ships to find you the best rates as your stuff goes from point A to point B. No need to get parents or your distant high school buddy involved in your shipping affairs and disasters. Like AirBNB Shiply is feedback-rated.

Shyp in the UK is a hipster alternative but you have to be in one of few US cities to qualify. So forget about it.

Roadie gets people in your region to move stuff on your behalf, like Lyft –– since “someone is always leaving everywhere” as their motto goes. Not available here.

And the Israeli company Freightos is doing great things to manage the complicated and inefficient freight shipping business. So many cargo ships go to sea empty and for no good cause.

But there is a large gap in the consumer space. I know Israeli VCs don’t like to fund consumer startups but the company who gets it right –– like Waze, or AirBNB or PayPal will make it big time.

FYI the package from China, a small insulin-fridge was a $400 item that ended costing me $300 in shipping and duty for 2 countries. The inefficiencies in shipping stuff are outstanding. Someone needs to fix it.

About the Author
Karin Kloosterman is a long-time journalist, and eco-entrepreneur, championing her energy for the earth and the good people and animal friends who live on it. She is a tech patent owner, brand designer, a published scientist, and an award-winning journalist. She's consulted governments, educational institutions and corporates such as Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, TEVA, and Tel Aviv University. She founded the first international cannabis technology conference in Israel, CannaTech, to promote medical cannabis as medicine and science. And she developed a robot to grow cannabis on earth and on Mars. Find her sustainability ideas at the world's first and leading eco news site for the Middle East, Green Prophet Contact her: