On-demand shipping startup Shyp is partnering with Banana Republic to help last-minute shoppers get presents to family and friends without needing to attach one of those awkward semi-apology notes to the package.
Between December 17-22, Banana Republic shoppers at 19 locations in cities served by Shyp (New York, San Francisco, and Miami) will receive a $25 credit to use on the service. That’ll help cover getting a person to pick up the gift, wrap it (courtesy of another partnership with Brit + Co.) and ship it out the door. A Shyp spokesperson told TechCrunch that you’ll be able to get away with sending something at the company’s economy rate on the 17th, but after that you’ll have to bump up to more premium shipping.
At San Francisco’s flagship Banana Republic on Grant Avenue, the SoHo location in New York City and the Aventura Mall in Miami, Shyp is also operating kiosks it’s calling “banana stands.” There, Shyp representatives will handle wrapping and shipping, offering a more traditional concierge for those who don’t want to wait to use the service until they get to their home or office.
It’s an interesting strategy for Shyp to try out because it reduces the pressure on Shyp’s couriers during this busy season but removes some of the “wow” factor from the service — will the in-person experience compel people to go on to use the app after the fact?
Maybe Shyp’s on to something — we do hear that there’s always money in the banana stand. In all seriousness, it seems Shyp is pushing hard to become a holiday utility; along with the Banana Republic and Brit + Co. partnerships, the startup previously ran a Black Friday weekend promotion to get people using Shyp for returns instead of dealing with carriers directly.