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wort maker
Dec 22, 2015
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This weekend I was supposed to be brewing a ‘traditional’ pilsner with Hana lager malt and a load of spicy Saaz. Even cultured up some of my favourite lager yeast from the freezer. Hana lager malt. How exciting! I’ve been wanting to try it for ages. Not available locally so had to pay a premium to import a sack from the UK to Norway. Only problem was that DHL Norway, for reasons best known to themselves, decided to charge me the equivalent of about $78 admin fee for processing the import on their primarily automated global barcoded digital system. $78? That’s exclusive of the local VAT charge too. WTF? Normal import processing fee is about $20. So I called them. They couldn’t explain why the fee was so high. They said “it’s complicated”. Me: “I’ve done a BSc, MSc and PhD. I have a background in science and I deal with complexity every day. I think I can cope.” They said, “It’s the rules in Norway.” Me: “No it’s not. I’ve been living in Norway for over 10 years and I know the normal fee is about 200kr ($20), because I routinely import stuff to Norway.” Them: “Well, you have to pay this fee.” Me: “LOL! F off!. I’m not paying this extortionate fee. I refuse to accept the shipment. You need to return it to the sender in the UK.” Apparently, they couldn’t do that. I had to bother the HBS in the UK, formally cancel the order and leave them with the responsibility of requesting return shipping. I felt a bit bad, but there’s no way I’m ever going to accept DHL Norway’s BS.

So, looks like this weekend’s brew is going to be my standard English Pilsner, extra pale MO, a load of EKG and my favourite lager yeast. Not exactly the end of the world just yet.
The funny thing, total cost, including DHL shipping from the UK (£25), was £117 and DHL Norway’s total bill for import (including Norway VAT) was 1170kr (about $117). It’s possible they had an illiterate spasmo on duty. Not my responsibility. It would be a little bit funnier if they insisted on pursuing me for payment of the import charge, though. I think I’d quite enjoy that. Priceless entertainment.
I've always heard, don't take a no from someone that can't give you a yes.

Talk to a supervisor.
Supervisor? I want a direct line to the CEO, so I can express my sincere feelings about the BS organisation he’s running.

The UK home brew store, who are champions when it comes to quality and service generally, bless them, have been trying to resolve this issue above what I’d be prepared to do myself, tbh, have been informed by DHL Norway that alcohol duty has been applied to my shipment’s import fees. Alcohol duty in Norway, a place with among the world’s highest duty slapped on alcohol. Alcohol duty on malted barley? Clearly, some numpty at DHL Norway is struggling with excessive foresight as their ‘superpower’. The UK home brew store have assured DHL Norway my shipment contains no alcohol, but rather than admit their mistake and simply adjust their import fee accordingly, as any functional organisation would, they dare to insist, at least in Norway, alcohol duty is applicable to malted barley, which, of course, is quite ridiculous.

DHL Norway are 🤪
They annoy me like little flies. Trolling me and my family. Even hijacking my autistic son’s mail. How sick is that? They have no idea what I’ve done to their BS economy. No idea I’ve only just started. LOL!
Lol, that reminds me of an instance in my younger years, I was involved in a months long battle with a bunch of bureucrats at our equivalent of the IRS (the feared and revered Skatteverket, surely it is named something similair at our western little brother's lands) over some BS fee.

It was over something like 500 Swedish Crowns(~50 dollar) for some deduction regarding materials for remodeling my then apartment I tried to make and they claimed I could not and tried to make me back-pay that amount in tax.
But after a lot of calls and loads of e-mails where I basically in legalese repeatedly told them: F ur fee and F u I won't pay, they finally actually budged because I was right.

The moral of this story is to never give up when you know you are right, and always try to, eh, "enchance" the silver lining when you can get away with it, always take an opportunity to screw them over just a little bit of the amount they are screwing you over...