I’ve got a Yamaha DTxpress III drum kit. It’s a really nice electronic kit that is great for practicing because you can play the kit wearing headphones, or plug it into an amp if you want to hear the real ‘noise’.
I shipped my kit over from London and during the journey, the computer (or brain), ended up broken. I checked with Yamaha in Brazil and they don’t stock the III computer anymore because the present version of this kit is the IV and the IV computer won’t work with the rest of the kit I have so I scouted around back in the UK for the right computer.
I found a supplier in London who could send me a second-hand computer – £200 for the computer, I bought an extra cymbal for another £40 and then the courier cost was £75.
It’s a pain to shell out so much cash because of a breakage in transit, but I needed the computer for my kit to work again so I paid out and waited for DHL to arrive.
When the courier arrived with my box of equipment, he wanted just under £300 in taxes to be paid, in cash or with a cheque, before he would give me the box. I tried protesting that the taxes are more than the value of the items I bought, but of course the courier couldn’t do a thing – the charges had been applied by the customs people.
I checked with DHL and it turned out I was getting charged a tax for importing electronic products – even though these were second-hand pieces of equipment for my personal use and not to be sold. Unfortunately, there was no way out of the situation.
So now it looks like DHL will send the box all the way back to London, to the company that sent me the equipment. The only saving grace being that they offered to send it on to my parent’s address once it does get back there… leaving me waiting for my drum computer until the next time I visit the UK!