Just noticed this thread.
I live in ripoff Britain - but please don't feel any sympathy for me! Why - because my local(ish) high street camera shop at worst equals the big UK box shifters and (when I catch them at a good time) make grey imports from Hong Kong look really pricey! For example my latest purchase was a pair of Swarovski EL 8.5 x 42 Binoculars for £400+ (about $600 US) less than I could find them on Flea Bay and no risk of extra taxes to pay as they are an official import. Good used ones over here were about £300 more expensive. Not all my deals are that good, when I got my 1D4 they could only just match the best prices I could get at the time, but then they did chuck in a spare battery for luck.
Now please can I have your sympathy - they have had ALL my money!
Me? I will shop local.