Few days ago, Switch Al-Babtain released new LG TV’s in Kuwait. All of the new models released are from 2020 and so far there isn’t anything from 2021. The interesting part is that they didn’t release any OLED TV. If you check their instagram comment section, most people are asking about LG CX OLED TV, but they kept saying that it isn’t available. Now the concern is whether they will release the new line of OLED TV’s such as C1, G1, BX, CX, GX, ZX and those are the ones that people are waiting for. I am waiting for my new gaming room to be ready to order LG CX 77 from B&H. The great part is that the shipping from B&H is really affordable. The cost of shipping form the US is $450 for the 77 inch TV. The first thing that will come to mind is the US voltage, and I was told by a lot of people that it is dual voltage. Even if you see that it isn’t dual voltage on the TV spec, some people tested it here in Kuwait and it worked without a transformer. If anyone is reluctant then you can use a voltage transformer to be on the safe side. If Switch Al-Babtain decides not to sell LG OLED TV’s then they will be missing a very big opportunity, because a lot of people are reluctant to buy a TV from UAE or the US and they will be buying the new Sony OLED TV’s that will be released later this year.
Update: Just confirmed with a salesperson at LG Al-Babtain that they will sell LG OLED TV’s in 2-3 months. Finally !
I finally found the perfect mail forwarding service in Kuwait. I have been using Posta Plus Mybox and Postshipper, but they both slowed down a lot due to the pandemic. I was trying to find something faster than both of them before the corona pandemic. Mybox became less efficient where I don’t see a package notifications so I call them and give them the tracking number after 3-4 weeks from delivery. They tell me the package is already in Kuwait and will be delivered in the next few days. The problem I never saw the notification, and I understand they are going through hard time because of the amount of orders. Postshipper is taking about 7 days to prepare the shipment, but I get it very fast once it is shipped. I was told to use DHL Easyshop, but I never got the chance to try it, because I was comfortable with Postshipper. After trying it for the first time, I realized this isn’t the speed that I am used to. It is abnormally fast and I haven’t seen a service that fast ever. Even MyUS isn’t as fast, so it immediately became my favorite mail forwarding service in Kuwait. Also there is an option for consolidation, but storage is free for 2 weeks only. Unlike Postshipper that gives 60-90 days of free storage. I am switching to DHL EasyShop for the urgent shipments. Postshipper for less important shipments and packages I want to consolidate over 60-90 days. Mybox for very large packages that are even less important.
Update: DHL EasyShop isn’t that great anymore, they take forever to list the package once it is delivered. Sometimes it takes more than a week to show the package in my box. Postshipper is once again the best mail forwarding service in Kuwait.
There are tons of E commerce websites, Apps, and Instagram accounts in Kuwait. It is such a convenience that these companies deliver their products to homes. I created this list, because I believe we need this list more than ever and because of quarantine. Of course I haven’t tried all of the listed companies, but this is the information I gathered from asking family, friends, and searching online. There are lots of websites, apps, and Instagram accounts that I am not aware of, so please let me know in the comments if you want me to add to the list.
I always lookup Kuwait latest E-Commerce websites. A lot of websites doesn’t have much design and branding, but the one I am talking about today is completely different. This is the largest pop culture website in Kuwait and it is called Ufff. The term in Kuwaiti means WOW, so I loved the website name. At Ufff, they sell Funko Pops, keychains, soft toys, bags, wallets, T shirts, caps, socks, mugs, notebooks, board games, and wall art. The thing I liked the most is that they have a crazy collection of Funko Pops. My nephews and nieces are big collectors, so I always buy them Funko Pops every now and then.
I have talked before about how Funko became very popular in Kuwait where you find them almost everywhere. I bought few for myself, and my favorite one has always been the KFC one. There are few collections that I am thinking of buying, but not sure yet. If I decide to collect Funko Pops, I will buy the following collections.
Back in early 2000, I used to shop with Aramex Shop & Ship, then I switched to MyUS in 2015. The impressive thing about My US is that their website is advanced and simple to use. The only problem is their pricing, which is always very expensive. I had the 30% discount with American Express back and it was still very expensive. The problem that there was a subscription fee, setup fee, and shipping was too expensive. Both setup and subscription for 2 years were waived for me as an American Express card holder. Their consolidation feature was really impressive, because I used to order lots of stuff and ship them all at once. The main problem was that the shipping options are expensive, but the worst part was the additional money I pay for customs when the packages arrives to my home. Each time it is a different amount, and they ask for cash, which I don’t usually have. I wanted an easier option where I can pay online, but that wasn’t the case back then.
When I discovered Posta Plus MyBox, I was really happy, because I no longer worry about shipping cost and unexpected customs fee. MyBox is impressive, because it is really inexpensive. The only issue I face with them is that their website where I can’t consolidate easily, and If I do. They still ship them at different times from the US, so I don’t really get it. Their website is very basic and they need to invest more money into it to be very efficient. The beauty of MyBox is that I pay all my shipping fees and customs online before delivery, so it is extremely convenient. I wish they have an option to pay by PayPal, but so far it is only Knet and Credit Cards
The new player is Postshipper, which is really impressive overall. I really like their website, it is so detailed and advanced. They invested heavily into the website where they show every package with a picture and 45 days timer to know until when each package can be stored. Having such features, I expected to pay subscription fee, but it isn’t the case, it is completely free.
On Prime Day, I bought lots of stuff from Amazon, because of the amazing deals I found. Got the Fire TV for $15, and a bundle of Fire TV and Amazon Echo Dot for $12. The HDMI Switched for $4.5, and most of these stuff I won’t use anytime soon. I guess I bought them because I found them on a great deal. Above you can see the picture of each item and a timer of the remaining days for storage.
The picture above shows you the pricing for all the above items, and I was really happy to see PayPal as an option, because I use it all the time. The pricing is really inexpensive, and you don’t have to worry about anything after that payment. It will be delivered right to your home in a very nice package.
Around 10 years ago, I used to buy all my computer hardware from Silicon Valley in Hawally (Bin Khaldoun St). I remember when I used to go from one store to another to find the lowest price possible. I used to go at least once every 1-2 weeks to see or buy the latest PC hardware. I bought a lot of computers from Hawally whether for myself, friends, or family. Now it is no longer the case, because I buy everything directly from Amazon.com. Almost all the time, I find things cheaper to buy from Amazon Vs the stores in Kuwait, this is including shipping and customs. Most of the time, I use Amazon.com direct shipping to Kuwait whenever it is possible. It is really fast and doesn’t cost much.
It is very very rare to see an item cheaper in Kuwait Vs the US, and sometimes I do find things to cost the same if I am ordering 1 item only. So what I do is order more than 1 item, because shipping mostly cost the same.
I have been buying SSD Hard drives for the company laptops, and I compared a lot of stores in Kuwait Vs Amazon.com, but Amazon has always been cheaper. Now about 85% of my purchases whether for the company or myself is through Amazon.
Best Buy and Walmart have been trying to catch up with Amazon for a very long time. They tried doing price match, pick up in store, and lowering the minimum ticket price for free shipping. The main problem with both Best Buy and Walmart is that they are not flexible with international shipments. With Amazon they offer international shipping to most countries, and it is extremely fast. Once I wanted to buy a tablet for my mother, but I wasn’t interested in the options and prices we have in Kuwait, so I ended up buying it from Amazon directly to Kuwait. It took 3-4 days to arrive and I saved a total of $170. It is extremely convenient, because Amazon take care of all the custom fees and importing charges. They refund the difference 1-2 weeks after I receive the items, so it is really impressive.
Now with Walmart and Best Buy they are the worst, because not only they don’t ship outside the US, but also they cancel transaction to forwarding boxes in the US. The forwarding boxes is an address in the US where they receive the package and ship internationally to any country. I can’t believe that they cancel most orders going to Aramex, MyUS, and the rest. One time we ordered a laptop from Best Buy to a package forwarding address, but it was cancelled. We tried three different addresses, but again all of them were cancelled.
Amazon is a different game, because they never cancelled a single order to any package forwarding addresses, and they ship anywhere. I believe even if I live in a cave, or on an island by myself, Amazon will still ship the package. Best Buy have the best selection of laptops, but the problem is their cancellation for shipments to forwarding addresses.
“Amazon’s market is the entire world, where Walmart and Best Buy is the US only”
TONS my very favorite grocery app in Kuwait finally launched an Android app on Google Play store. The past few months I was using my wife’s iPhone to order from TONS, because I am an Android user. After testing the Android app, I realized that it doesn’t have all the features that the iPhone have. The features will be released in the upcoming updates and eventually it will match the iPhone app. TONS is the most advanced app in terms of coding and design in the Middle East. The moment you use the app, you could tell that it wasn’t programmed or designed in Kuwait. The most impressive features are shopping by force touch, product replacements, and push notifications. I believe that TONS will be the next Talabat or Carriage in terms of success, so lets see how that turns out in the upcoming future.
I used TONS to order my groceries from Mishref co-op, but I recently switched to Shamiya co-op. For some reason, it is much more efficient than Mishref and I get my orders really fast and always on time. I also heard that Yarmouk co-op is a very good option, so try either one whenever you order from TONS.
Yoghi is an online stationary website based in Kuwait. They ship to the GCC and the rest of the world, and their shipping rates are very reasonable. One of the items that I really like is Yoghi soft tissue, and it either come in a box of 1 or box of 5. I really like the quality of the tissue, but what I like most is the design of the package. People ask me all the time, where did you get that tissue box from. I have always liked well designed products, and this is definitely one of them.
Buying from Yoghi made our lives much easier at the company, where we no longer have to go to Mirqab and negotiate prices. It is 1 click away from purchasing whatever we need, and if we don’t find a product, we talk to the customer service using the live chat feature and we get whatever we ask for. I also don’t have to remember what I ordered in the past, I just lookup my order history and order the same stuff again.
My favorite part of the website is the search, because it is very fast and superior. I don’t have to leave the homepage and move from one page to the other. Even if I mis-spell a word, it finds the product instantly. The customer service of Yoghi is great, and they are very responsive.
Life is more convenient than ever where a lot of things is shifting online, and finally a place like Mirqab which I really hate to go to have an online substitute.
TONS is the most innovative grocery app in the Middle East, and specifically Kuwait. Most of the time I don’t feel like driving to the supermarket, so I order everything online. Most of the apps and websites were very basic, and have a very limited selection of products. When TONS was released, it was a game changer, because they shoot their own high resolution pictures, and write down the nutrition facts of most of the products. There are 2 supermarkets as of now, which are Mishref and Shamiya, and more are joining soon.
The coolest feature in TONS app is the force touch where you can buy everything using one hand. To use the force touch feature, just choose a product and hold your finger until you see the sliding bar. When you push up, you increase the quantity of the product, and when you push down, you decrease the quantity. If you continue to push down, you can delete the product from the cart. This feature made shopping extremely simple, and I have never seen it in any other application in the market.
The most interesting thing is that their domain is www.tons.com which is a very rare domain to have since it is only 4 letters.
When you buy from TONS, they will assign a personal shopper to get all the products and groceries from the supermarket. They handpick the best groceries in the supermarket, but sometimes the groceries in the supermarket isn’t good quality. Overall, I really enjoy using the app, even though there is so much room for improvement.
The most beautiful thing is when I receive TONS bags and have my products and groceries inside them. The demand was very high for TONS that they sold out of all their bags, but more are coming soon.