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Travel could be 'the solution to reviving brick and mortar retail'

DUBAI, May 28, 2017

Travellers could be the saving grace for high street, or brick and mortar retail, with the launch of a new peer-to-peer shipping platform - AirWayBill.

High street has experienced its toughest decade to date. With multiple outlets selling the same products, and the rapid growth of the online marketplace, traditional retail is facing oblivion.

AirWayBill could be the answer in supporting traditional stores, particularly those that sell hand crafted or bespoke items that are hard to obtain in resident’s countries or those businesses that can’t afford the expense of setting up an online store.

AirWayBill allows shoppers to buy from anywhere in the world, and have it delivered to them at a fraction of the cost of a courier by making use of the unused space in travellers' suitcases.

Khaled Sehly, co-founder and managing director, at AirWayBill, said: “As a regular traveller myself, I’ve been asked many times to carry documents, or special items in to countries, as it was more expedient, and cost effective for me to do it, than handover the package to a courier company,” he stated.

“It was with this in mind, that we conceived the idea of AirWayBill; create a community of travellers and shippers, to move everything from the latest mobile phones, to health supplements, lost car keys, and even baby formula. It is a new way of getting an old job done; having travellers use their spare space to help move specialist items, while earning as they do so.”

Having launched in early 2017 AirWayBill has a community of 35,000 users in its target markets; the US, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, India and the UAE. It has its legal base of operations in Spain, due to the country’s, and wider European Union (EU) data protection laws. “We wanted to make sure that our community is protected in terms of their information, our business models requires our community to place their trust in us, so we explored the legal framework to make sure we had everything covered.”

When it comes to the shipment of items, and the acceptance by community members to carry either collections or shopping requests, the shipper has the right to refuse carriage if it’s felt that the item is unlawful.

“Everyone should feel confident when using AirWayBill,” confirmed Sehly. “Shopping is one of civilisations earliest traditions, it supports millions of jobs around the world, both directly and through ancillary industries, so it has survived. The scope for AirWayBill is massive, in terms of geographical spread, and in terms of community building. Based on what we’ve seen so far, and the weird and wonderful things people are looking for, we know that we have a sound business model.” - TradeArabia News Service

Tags: retail | travel | shipping | High | mortar | street |

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