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Sending keyboards by courier within the UK
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> General Gear  
Author Sending keyboards by courier within the UK
Licudi
I need to send a keyboard by courier within the UK, but eBay's own delivery service shutl will not insure electronic items or musical instruments.

So, can anyone recommend a domestic courier to carry something measuring about 110 x 38 x 14cm, weighing less than 10 kilos, with an insured value of £450? I'd rather not use Interparcel/UPS as they lost my Korg Minilogue a couple of years ago, something that took a month to sort out.

Apologies in advance as I'm sure there's already an existing thread on this, but with search being down I can't find it.
CoreInside
I use www.transglobalexpress.com
Tnt is usually the cheapest.
Not sure if their insurance covers musical instruments.
tioJim
I've always assumed the actual process of claiming on a courier's insurance, even if they claim to cover an item, would be so drawn out and painful, if not altogether fruitless, that I don't bother insuring. So far so good.

I do however pack things beyond all reason! Box within a box, padding between those and of course the item itself is positively coddled! I've even strengthened pacakges with wooden slats (concealed). It adds to shipping weight but I figure the only real insurance is my confidence in my packaging.
unrecordings
I wouldn't rule out UPS, just book direct rather than through Interparcel
Damage can often depend on the delivery driver rather than the company - maybe ask your buyer if they have a preference. I'm a fan of DPD at the moment because of their one hour delivery window, but sooner or later they will fuck up - they all do
supersuper
all services with tracking should suffice.

- Make sure you over engineer your wrapping

- take a demo video showing the unit is in good condition, if possible have a piece of paper with that identifies the purchaser in your video so that it is obviously your unit and taken at the time of sale. You only pull this out if they try funny stuff that you need to debunk.
Licudi
Thanks, folks. Sent by parcelforce 48 in the end. Will see how it goes.

I still think it's wrong for companies to encourage customers to buy expensive compensation packages that are invalid. Most T&C's reveal musical instruments and/or electronic items are prohibited from cover.

Is there no delivery service catering for this market? I would have thought it was big enough.
rockmanrock
I thought Parcelforce didn't cover musical instruments?

It is a ballache. For stuff under say 100 quid I use UPS via Ebay Shutl. For over that I'm currently using UPS via http://www.p4d.co.uk/. The insurance fees are much less than Interparcel but I've not had to claim yet. P4D get mixed reviews.

As supersuper says, packing really well is the best route. I use fruit/veg trays. Thick cardboard with reinforced corners. The only tricky bit is fitting a decent lid on it.
Licudi
rockmanrock wrote:
I thought Parcelforce didn't cover musical instruments?


The Parcelforce T&Cs prohibit any 'Musical Instrument that is NOT in a hard protective case'. Most couriers refuse to carry them fullstop.

Last time I used UPS they lost my Minilogue obliging me to refund the buyer. Some weeks later they found it and delivered it to the buyer who now had a keyboard he hadn't paid for. That took some sorting.
rockmanrock
Licudi wrote:
rockmanrock wrote:
I thought Parcelforce didn't cover musical instruments?


The Parcelforce T&Cs prohibit any 'Musical Instrument that is NOT in a hard protective case'. Most couriers refuse to carry them fullstop.

Last time I used UPS they lost my Minilogue obliging me to refund the buyer. Some weeks later they found it and delivered it to the buyer who now had a keyboard he hadn't paid for. That took some sorting.


I've had good luck with UPS so far. It seems that claiming via Shutl is a problem though.

I've just looked at Parcelforce again, it says: "Musical instruments are excluded from enhanced compensation. ". I wouldn't like to try my chances with that. It also makes me wonder what do they class as a musical instrument? Where would a rack mount module fall? A synth one vs say a reverb.

https://www.parcelforce.com/help-and-advice/sending/items-we-exclude-c ompensation

I've had a delivery due from RS Components and they've used Parcelforce. I thought it was a bit late so I checked the tracking and they've left it at the post office. No card through the door. If I hadn't checked I bet it would have gone back to RS. Got to drive to get it now, a pain in the arse.
Licudi
Hmmm. So I ask again. Does anyone know of a courier in the UK that covers loss or damage to musical instruments? You know, as opposed to just pocketing the enhanced compensation fee. evil
Panason
Quote:
It also makes me wonder what do they class as a musical instrument? Where would a rack mount module fall?



I think it would be wise to describe anything without a keyboard as "studio recording/production equipment". A module is not a musical instrument unless you're a gear fetishist meh
Likewise for controller keybaords that have no sound engine but this could be a little trickier to contest.

The worse UK couriers in my experience are (in order of decreasing shittiness):

Hermes- avoid like the plague
Yodel- the name says it all
UKMail
Parcelforce (they seem to have better trained staff in recent years as packages no longer arrive with visible signs of having been thrown around)

If I rememebr correctly neither Royal Mail (for small parcels) nor DPD exclude all musical instruments from cover but only specific fragile stuff like violins. These are the only two couriers I use but I have never sent a keyboard synth.
Licudi
Panason wrote:
If I rememebr correctly neither Royal Mail (for small parcels) nor DPD exclude all musical instruments from cover but only specific fragile stuff like violins. These are the only two couriers I use but I have never sent a keyboard synth.


I don't know about DPD, but Royal Mail Next Day Special Delivery is good for music gear up to 2kg and £500. However, with even something like a Nyx or SE-02 approaching 2Kg before additional packaging, I've only found Special Delivery useful for small relatively light things such as Roland Boutiques and OTOs.
lud
Licudi wrote:


I still think it's wrong for companies to encourage customers to buy expensive compensation packages that are invalid. Most T&C's reveal musical instruments and/or electronic items are prohibited from cover.


Couldn't agree more, very annoyed when I realised I'd payed £50 extra for non existing compensation coverage recently. Surely an illegal practice as one declares the package contents too!
Panason
lud wrote:
Licudi wrote:


I still think it's wrong for companies to encourage customers to buy expensive compensation packages that are invalid. Most T&C's reveal musical instruments and/or electronic items are prohibited from cover.


Couldn't agree more, very annoyed when I realised I'd payed £50 extra for non existing compensation coverage recently. Surely an illegal practice as one declares the package contents too!


I had a problem with an ebay sale I made for a (vintage) machine. It arrived damaged (or so the buyer claimed) and I had used shutl with "enhanced protection" as I didn't think to check the small print.

Shutl (who are just a useless middleman company owned by ebay) had used UPS for the actual shipping. UPS asked for photo evidence and then said that any compensation would be given to Shutl as they were the "sender of record". Shutl told me that they would not give me any compensation as electronics are not covered for damage in transit even with their scammy "enhanced protection". As per ebay's buyer protection, ebay would refund the buyer out of my paypal account regardless of whether I accepted the return or not.

By now I was feeling pretty fuckin pissed as the damage didn't make sense ( packaging was not damaged) and I didn't know how bad the damage could really be or whether the buyer was trying on something.

Fortunately I managed to persuade the buyer that the machine was worth keeping and he accepted a small partial refund so he could get the damage fixed ( a 1/4" jack socket had been crushed) . I also told him that I had photos of the machine's serial number and that if he sent the machine back it could get further damaged in the post and we would have a problem. Maybe this made hime re-think his (possible) scam and he accepted. (When buyer accepts any refund, return case is closed and cannot be re-opened)

Shutl (shitl) later had the gaul to send me a bill for the shipping at which point I went ballistic. I told them that if they did not cancel this bill I would take this case to the Ombudsman and make a case for mis-selling as ebay should never offer shutl services for electronics and/or shutl should make it clear that electronics are not covered and not hide it in small print.

They compensated me for the full amount that the machine had sold for nanners and later sent me the bill for the shipping again, which I then paid..

Many of these middlemen know they're pushing the boundaries of legality and will buckle if you show some resolve and that you know your rights. Or they're just not set up to deal with formal complaints and disputes.
Man-In-A-Suitcase
Licudi wrote:
I don't know about DPD, but Royal Mail Next Day Special Delivery is good for music gear up to 2kg and £500.

This is wrong. you can send a special delivery item upto 20KG and insured upto £1000, with the dimensions of 61x46x46cm. This is classified as a medium parcel. Larger Parcels (keyboards etc) go by Parcelforce.

Plenty of bubblewrap and double-boxing method and it's safe for shipping.
Licudi
Panason wrote:

Many of these middlemen know they're pushing the boundaries of legality and will buckle if you show some resolve and that you know your rights.


Right. Don't let the bastards grind you down.

Man-In-A-Suitcase wrote:
you can send a special delivery item upto 20KG and insured upto £1000, with the dimensions of 61x46x46cm. This is classified as a medium parcel. Larger Parcels (keyboards etc) go by Parcelforce


Thanks, that's good to know. Does ParcelForce offer compensation for musical instruments? The T&Cs seems to say MI are covered only if in a contained in a hard (flight?)case.
wiperactive
I know you mentioned Interparcel as having a bad record for you and as someone else has pointed out they all seem screw up sooner or later, I have memories of phoning up one of those 'facilitator' type courier services (in regard to instrument cover) who use Parcelforce, UPS and the like as carriers.

I was told that so long as the facilitator service i.e. interparcel, Parcle2Go, ipostparcels, etc covers for musical instruments in their inclusion/exclusion lists (they should have one buried away somewhere), then if ParcelForce, for instance, is used by a facilitator offering cover for your item then it's facilitator's cover which takes effect over that of ParcelForce's in the event of a loss/damage claim.

Don't hold me to this, but I thought I'd mention this as something you could look into for yourself, as I made my enquiry a few years ago and even then I wasn't 100% certain if it was really the case.

Oh, and always pack as if the item will be tail dropped from a low flying C-130 Hercules transporter plane! Double boxed and 'floated' within the centre space of the whole package.

It seems as if there's barely anything you can post by now which wouldn't fall foul of the increasingly tighter cover conditions that couriers impose... they seem to be raking it in by utilising our fears.
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