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Volume No. 1 Issue No. 93 - Monday March 12, 2007
DialABarrel Makes It Easy to Ship Care Packages Home

By News Desk

West Indian immigrants to the United States typically maintain close ties with relatives back home. One of the many ways they demonstrate that they care is by frequently sending gift barrels full of items to loved ones in the Caribbean region.

DialABarrel is a company dedicated to streamlining this process. The Caribbean owned Export Company specializes in the shipping of pre-packed and customized grocery barrels to the Caribbean region.

DialABarrel does the shopping, packing and shipping of a customer’s grocery barrel to his or her preferred destination. DialABarrel’s unique and innovative approach to the business of shipping barrels allow customers to do wholesale shopping and shipping of grocery barrels from the convenience of their homes from any location in the world. Major marketing efforts were launched in September 2006 following its formation about five years ago by US based Dominicans Paul Philip, Peter Philip and Gerald Dorsette. The partners saw a need within the Caribbean & West Indian immigrant communities and decided to fill it.

“It can be such an onerous endeavor - going shopping on weekends to fill a barrel and then having to wait for a company to pick it up,” Philip notes. ‘We decided there had to be a more efficient way to do it. We thought that the traditional way of shipping barrels back home to family members was a little too difficult so we came up with a customer friendly solution, one that is focused on saving time and money for the customer.’

DialABarrel customer service operators are available to answer questions or take orders 24 hours a day 365 days a year. Or a customer can log onto the DialABarrel website at any time from any place in the world and place their order.

West Indians in America tend to be busy people, conscientiously pursuing their careers, achieving their educational goals, and raising families. They also usually participate in a wide variety of leisure and entertainment activities. Philip says DialABarrel is designed to save appreciable amounts of precious time by performing an array of tasks that are usually done by these individuals.

DialABarrel customers may place an order for a barrel in a process that takes only five to ten minutes, where previously it could take two to three weeks (or longer) to fill that same barrel and an additional two to three weeks to get it shipped out of the country.

‘Traditionally, someone orders a barrel, they go out and shop over some period of time, fill the barrel and wait for a delivery company to come out pick it up and ship it’, he observes.

‘With DialABarrel, there in no need to leave your home. You simply choose between a pre-packed barrel and a customized barrel. We do the shopping for you, we pack your barrel and we ship your barrel. We also make a confirmation call to the recipient to advise them of the barrel’s arrival.’

What does Philip find most challenging about running DialABarrel? ‘The logistics of making sure we have the right goods on hand’, he replies. ‘We try to predict what our customers will request from us and as such we pre-pack three different types of barrels with a variety of goods that we’ve found our customers prefer.

There are certain nuances with each particular island so it’s very difficult to do a one-size-fits-all barrel. We’ve added customized barrels where we will actually work with the customer and shop for the specific items that that person requires.’

Philip says the most satisfying aspect for him about running the company is the pleasure of meeting a very real customer need with the service that DialABarrel offers. ‘Our customers are always amazed and estatic at being able to have this task done so quickly and efficiently. It is immensely gratifying to provide a service that brings so much relief and pleasure to the Caribbean community.’

Indeed, DialABarrel customers have complimented the company for its fine work: One described it as quick easy and convenient. “The contents of the barrel was in order as I said before, nothing broken or spilled. The selection of the groceries was also very good; it included things that would be normally consumed by a household.

There was everything including sugar, flour, peanut butter, tissue, cornmeal and tin stuffs like tuna, spam & peas, beans, cereal. It was well packed and arrived here (Dominica) safely. Trust me, they did a very good job. I don’t think I could have done it better.”

Another DialABarrel client stated, My family could not stop thanking me for the barrel full of great stuff that I sent. I have to thank DialABarrel. I can’t take all of the credit. Still another client had this to say to the company: A big thank you to DialABarrel for making the process of shipping groceries to my Caribbean folks so easy. It was so convenient to shop online and know that the shipping is all handled by DialABarrel. They had all the groceries that I needed. I will definitely use them again.”

Paul Philip believes the West Indies is a very special part of this world. The people are what is most special, he asserts. ‘I think Caribbeans have a rich heritage and culture and they have a passion for life, enjoy life, take care of each other and are very hard-working, upwardly mobile individuals.

Wherever they immigrate, they always make the best out of life.’ This successful businessperson also has a high opinion of his adopted country, the United States of America. I think the United States is an oasis of opportunity, he says. ‘The laws of the land (democracy) allow people to achieve to the limits of their imagination. I love this country!’

DialABarrel currently ships to ports in Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Barbados, Antigua, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Grenada, Dominica, Montserrat, Haiti, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the French Antilles.

Gift barrel packages start at $299.99, shipping included. A Jumbo grocery barrel at DialABarrel is a mere $379.99 shipping included. The average person traditionally spends over $600 dollars just filling the barrel with groceries.

The busy seasons for DialABarrel are Christmas, Carnival, Easter, summer holidays, and notable dates such as Independence or National Day – which of course occur throughout the year, and differ among islands. The business is based in New Jersey but is geographically neutral as far as the customer’s ability to use the service.

An order may be placed from the convenience of a customer’s home or office at any time, twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week, on the Internet or by calling live operators at 800-545-2909. DialABarrel accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, PayPal and Money Orders.

Caricom Consular Meeting in New York 1/31/2007 – Presenters DialABarrel was invited to present at the 1st Quarter Caricom Consular meeting in New York on Janurary 31st 2007. The Caricom consular members were extremely receptive and supportive of DialABarrel’s community related services.
DialABarrel has been featured in the following US based newspapers:
• Caribbean Life Magazine - NY
• Caribbean Star Magazine - Atl, GA
• Carib Voice Magazine – NY, ATL & FL

Comments about this article? Email:
[email protected]

Volume No. 1 Issue No. 94
Chavez visits Dominica
History of Zouk
Carnival Fire
My wayward friend
The greenest island

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