Shipping Cost From UK To US?

Gertz

Member
Does anyone have any idea roughly how much it would cost to ship a bass drum, 3 toms and a snare drum from the UK to the US? I'm going to the USA for University soon and I'm wondering if its possible for me to take them there.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
Fedex and UPS both have quote systems on their sites. When I shipped my guitars to Vienna and back, it was really expensive. I also had an issue with customs (in both directions since my guitars have "contraband" woods) and had to provide a full chain of ownership... since their purchases in 1975/1979. I'd never do it again, as I almost lost my 75' Les Paul Deluxe.

Unless you cannot do without your kit, you're best off leaving them at home, buying a used kit here, and re-selling it when you depart.
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
We regularly airfreight drums to the USA. Drums are packaged individually in PR AAA rigid cases & further packaged. That's an expensive way of doing things, but we do it for reasons that don't apply to sending stuff privately.

Nesting the drums & shipping by sea is the most economical option if you're not in a hurry. You'll need to make a declaration to avoid importation duties, but that's not difficult (unless there's banned wood species or something similar involved).

Packed individually & cased, by priority air, you're looking at around £250. By sea & nested, you should be looking at under £100 door to door, or less if you can deliver to a hub & pick up yourself from the port. Remember, part of the cost is taken up with export / import document processing. It's not something you can reasonably sort out yourself, so you end up paying for that service either included with courier fees, or by paying an agent. Also remember, you should consider insurance, & that can add considerably to costs.

If you're thinking of eventually bringing the kit back to the UK, then there's various temporary export mechanisms you can choose from, but they're all a PITA, & require record keeping / chain discipline. Unless you're thinking of leaving the kit in the USA, or this specific kit is important to have with you, I'd strongly consider leaving my kit in the UK & buying something cheap in the USA. If you buy right, you can probably recover most of your cost on resale.
 

Gertz

Member
We regularly airfreight drums to the USA. Drums are packaged individually in PR AAA rigid cases & further packaged. That's an expensive way of doing things, but we do it for reasons that don't apply to sending stuff privately.

Nesting the drums & shipping by sea is the most economical option if you're not in a hurry. You'll need to make a declaration to avoid importation duties, but that's not difficult (unless there's banned wood species or something similar involved).

Packed individually & cased, by priority air, you're looking at around £250. By sea & nested, you should be looking at under £100 door to door, or less if you can deliver to a hub & pick up yourself from the port. Remember, part of the cost is taken up with export / import document processing. It's not something you can reasonably sort out yourself, so you end up paying for that service either included with courier fees, or by paying an agent. Also remember, you should consider insurance, & that can add considerably to costs.

If you're thinking of eventually bringing the kit back to the UK, then there's various temporary export mechanisms you can choose from, but they're all a PITA, & require record keeping / chain discipline. Unless you're thinking of leaving the kit in the USA, or this specific kit is important to have with you, I'd strongly consider leaving my kit in the UK & buying something cheap in the USA. If you buy right, you can probably recover most of your cost on resale.
Thanks a lot for the reply; very helpful. Cheaper than I had anticipated.
 

Brian

Gold Member
I've never shipped a drum set, but would also strongly suggest insurance. I do work for a large (largest) shipping company and have done international shipment auditing as well as customer service. For pricing, the most important factor will be the number of packages you are shipping.
 
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