DHL Express has transported more than 1,100 pieces of equipment and instruments for 15 US high schools and university marching bands to participate in the London New Year’s Day Parade.

DHL collected tubas, snare drums, trumpets, saxophones, trombones and other musical instruments from each participating school, and loaded them onto special aircraft containers to be transported to the DHL Gateway at JFK Airport in New York.

From there, the shrink-wrapped instruments were airlifted to East Midland’s Airport.  DHL provided customs brokerage services and warehousing for the instruments at the airport until they were transported by truck to London for retrieval by band members in time for pre-parade rehearsals.

The students will join more than 6,000 representatives of London Boroughs and numerous nations to parade before an expected street audience of around 500,000 on 1 January 2013.

“DHL conducted a specialised shipping solution that provided peace of mind to these young band members so they could focus on their once-in-a-lifetime experience and be worry free that their instruments would arrive on time, in perfect condition,” said Phil Couchman, CEO of DHL Express UK and Ireland.

After the event, DHL will orchestrate the complex exercise in reverse, coordinating the return shipment of all 1,100 instruments to each of the participating schools in 13 states.