Starting our Zapateria
Long distance relationships are different, you spend a great deal of time apart from the one you love. While technology does bridge this gap, nothing is better than those times when we are together. They are pure magic.
With 10,304kms between us, it's not like we can go for a weekend visit. One way travel is typically about 20 hours, so you need to plan 2 days each trip just to get there and back. We sometimes meet in the middle and both fly to a location, such as New York. But, so far, we have been going back and forth as this is where we can spend time with each others friends and families and experience their life.
Spending a day traveling is not awesome, and it's certainly not inexpensive. We try to book in advance to keep the airfare as low as possible, but it can add up pretty quickly. We needed to figure out a way to see each other more often and reduce the impact on our pocketbooks.
I really wanted to bring custom Chilean boots back to Canada because they were beautiful, unique and well made. I wondered why nobody was doing this already, then I found out... cost. Shipping from Chile is pricy! Getting these boots works great if you go to Chile because you can bring them back with you, but shipping from Chile to Canada for one pair of boots would be over $300 by courier!
This evolved into many discussions on how we could create an online store and use technology to pass along the orders, and our trips to see each other would be part of the fulfillment of the orders. We initially figured every so many orders of boots would help to fund a trip to see each other, as our travel would be absorbed as part of the shipping.
So, after testing the product (through wear), and testing the ordering system, and testing the measuring system, and testing the communication systems and testing the banking and transfers, we are ready to go ahead and begin taking orders. So, we're ready, mostly.
What we discovered is that there are many shoe fairs around the world that will provide us with many meeting points including, New York, Milan, Paris, Barcelona, London, and Leon, Mexico! So, for the last several months we have been planning the business and testing all of the things above. We know we have much to learn, especially in our first few orders and we have much to improve on over the coming months, but we are excited about creating something together, for us, by us.
Our dream is to bring these high quality boots to appreciative customers in North America and in the process, see each other more often.