An Arctic Trucks employee walks and drives his truck on an airplane runway in the frigid Antarctic weather.
An Arctic Trucks employee walks and drives his truck on an airplane runway in the frigid Antarctic weather.

Power Of Global Trade

A lifeline to the outside world

Delivered halfway around the globe in 36 hours

Antarctica global trade story

From Iceland to ice land in 36 hours

Thanks to DHL’s global express shipping, an urgently needed emergency replacement satellite phone was sent halfway around the world to Antarctica – within 36 hours. That’s the power of global trade. And DHL is making it happen.

Iceland-based company Arctic Trucks supplies vehicles for high-profile expeditions in the Arctic and Antarctic. Every summer, an Arctic Truck expedition makes the perilous journey to build an ice-runway on the Antarctic Plateau. It is at this key location that scientists rest and refuel before flying on to their facility where they conduct vital research about global climate change. If something goes wrong under these extreme environmental conditions, it can have serious consequences.

Antarctica – an extreme challenge

Antarctica – an extreme challenge
Gudmundur Gudjonsson, Arctic Trucks Reykjavík

Thanks to the partnership we have with DHL, the runway was finished and the scientists made it to the South Pole.

Gudmundur Gudjonsson, Arctic Trucks Reykjavík

When Arctic Trucks are operating in Antarctica, they cannot rely on anybody else – because there is nobody else. They are on their own. With extreme weather conditions and temperatures as low as minus 55 degrees during summer, a deadly storm can be only minutes away at the Polar Plateau.

There is nowhere more extreme on earth to build a runway. So when one of Arctic Trucks’ satellite phones failed, it was an unacceptable risk because that device was their lifeline to the outside world. They needed a replacement and they needed it fast.

Snow Shovel

80Research Stations

Around 30 countries operate approximately 80 research stations on this continent.

4Meter rise in sea levels

Scientists assert that the melting West Antarctic ice sheet will raise sea levels by up to 4 meters all over the world.

-93.2Degree celsius

The world’s coldest temperature ever measured was taken in the Polar Plateau on Aug. 10, 2010.

DHL providing a reliable courier servicePlane from South Africa landing in AntacticaHolding the replacement satellite phone delivered from DHL
Hjorleifur Ragnarsson, DHL Iceland

When I got the phone call from Arctic Trucks saying that they had a bit of an emergency in the Antarctic, I knew we had to react fast. By using the DHL network and customs brokerage in South Africa, we were able to ship the replacement satellite phone within the time frame.

Hjorleifur Ragnarsson, DHL Iceland


Years of partnership


Kilometers delivery distance


Hours delivery time

Gudmundur Gudjonsson calling headquarters

How we supported Arctic Trucks with our express delivery

5:01 p.m., Antarctica, 83 degrees south

Gudmundur Gudjonsson informs Arctic Trucks headquarters in Reykjavík that one of their satellite phones went down.

Hjorleifur Ragnarsson mobilzes DHL to be immediately on the case

How we supported Arctic Trucks with our express delivery

5:17 p.m., Arctic Trucks headquarters, Reykjavík

Arctic Trucks calls Hjorleifur Ragnarsson from DHL Iceland asking him if DHL can undertake an express delivery service for a replacement phone to Antarctica as quickly as possible.

DHL begins the customs clearance process

How we supported Arctic Trucks with our express delivery

5:34 p.m., DHL office Iceland

Hjorleifur Ragnarsson mobilizes DHL network and contacts customs clearance services in South Africa.

A DHL plane is on its way

How we supported Arctic Trucks with our express delivery

8:45 p.m. next day, Johannesburg Airport

The replacement satellite phone is on board a DHL aircraft heading for Antarctica.

Gudmundur Gudjonsson receives the replacement satellite phone

How we supported Arctic Trucks with our express delivery

4:48 a.m. next day, Antarctica, 83 degrees south

The replacement satellite phone is handed over to Gudmundur Gudjonsson. Mission accomplished.

DHL Express

DHL’s aviation service for express parcel support

Determine the speed you need. We will deliver.

DHL is your specialist in national and international shipping services. Thanks to our large variety of express parcel and customs brokerage services, you will always stay one step ahead of your competition.

Discover more of our power of global trade stories

The source of Mongolian cashmere for Grana

The start of an e-⁠commerce business

Musical instruments from Thomann, based in Bavaria

The world’s universal language

2019 © DHL International GmbH.
All rights reserved.