I'm leaving for Bulgaria tomorrow with a bunch of professional radio/recording gear. Kindly lavish me with advice on getting there and back with all my equipment intact.
I'll be in BG for two weeks visiting the Koprivshtitsa
festival and doing a bunch of other projects, all funded by fans and supporters. I'm a professional radio producer by day, but my employer isn't involved in this particular expedition, so I'm more or less on my own.
This is my rig
. It all fits in the pictured bag.
I've never taken quite this amount of gear before, so I wanted to ask about best practices for arriving in, traveling around, and departing Bulgaria safely. Specifically:
- What do I have to declare to Customs before and/or when I arrive? Are there forms I should be looking for? And will I need different ones for departure and arrival?
- Should I bring a letter or some proof of my project? If so, what? (Again, this isn't for my employer; although I do work in radio and much of my gear overlaps, this particular trip is my baby.)
- I hear the theft situation can be quite significant at the Sofia airport. I understand one can ask for a private inspection of one's bags when passing through customs. Is this true, and how can I best shield my gear from the greatest number of eyes at the inspection?
- Will it attract even more undue attention to have a tiny (1") padlock through the zipper, or would this actually be a good idea?
- Anything else I might not be aware of, specific to traveling in this recently-acceded EU country with its own unique economic and cultural circumstances?
Thanks in advance.