After our marvellous night at the Cape, it was the first time for us going south again after more than a week. At this point we did not see the sun set for 4 or 5 five nights, but we got used to it sooner than expected. There was one huge advantage of Norway’s coast compared to Sweden and Finland – no mosquitos. It is simply fantastic that you can stand at a fjord at night fishing and no little monsters are annoying you.
A disadvantage of Norway on the other hand only got to us after making the first Norwegian partner – customs. Naive as we were, we totally forget, respectively ignored that Norway does not belong to the European Union and therefore our customers have to pay customs on their orders. In this respect we’re especially unlucky, since food is one of the few types of products that one needs to pay customs for. You can imagine that this fact did not make our sales approach/pitch much easier because after we negotiated a price per unit for the respective partners, we then had to reveal that shipping to Norway is also quite expensive AND they need to pay customs. Considering that, it appears almost miraculous that we found eventually so many partners in Norway. But on the other hand Norway is a rather expensive country and the businesses and customers are used to higher prices in general.
After the sun spoiled us the first half of the trip, now Northern Norway showed us how lucky we had been in Sweden and Finland. All it could offer us was 8 degrees and rain in the region around Alta. We were really wondering how people can happily live here for their whole lifes, when all they get is this weather, even in summer (after 4 months of darkness in winter time). Alta in general was not a very fruitful place for our sales endeavours (maybe influenced by the weather). However, we made one sale, probably the most surprising of the whole trip. We received the advice to go to one certain place in town to try to sell. However when we entered it was basically a shop for leather bags that had a tiny section for souvenirs. We thought it was impossible to sell here, but, mainly due to the sales experience of Alex, we could indeed land the deal.
So the next day we proceeded towards Tromsö. Two fun facts about the city: It has the northernmost university and Burger King worldwide! Now that is something you will definitely remember. But fun aside. For a city this far north the place was beautiful and we spent a good night in town having pizza and beers. The city in general has so much to offer, from Museums and the Ice Church to modern architecture and amusement parks. And on top of that a ropeway that brings you to the highest peak in the area to give a breathtaking view over the city. Being a student or citizen here must be hard from time to time, but it is also something unique, when you can tell people to study/live in such a special place far north. In the city we made two good sales and received many leads that we’re currently working on to also turn them into future partners.
In the next episode of “Renjer on tour” you’ll read all about our fantastic time on the Lofoten and Vesterålen, for some people the most beautiful islands in the world!