Sunday, September 24, 2023

How Much Does It Cost To Ship Wine

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Bringing Wine Home From Italy: Checking Wine On A Plane

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Lets start with rules, regulations, and tariffs for checking wine. The long and the short is: it varies by country. But, it can be done. And, in most cases it is not as cost prohibitive as one might think. Nearly all countries offer some sort of duty-free limit on alcohol. That means you will not pay duties or taxes up to a certain amount. In general, you will pay additional taxes for larger quantities amounts vary by country.

Please note: The policy for checking wine on a plane in terms of proper packaging type, weight, dimensions etc. may vary by carrier. We recommended contacting individual airlines to ensure you are clear on how you can travel with your checked wine.

Here is a brief look at different countries, based on the most frequent visitors we see in the area:

Traveling with wine into the United States

In the U.S. the limit is 1 litre / 34 oz. with an unlimited additional quantity possible for personal consumption. The duty for this additional quantity, if charged, is only $1-$2 per bottle. Personally, Ive never paid extra and Ive always been honest about having more than the limit. The key is to explain it is for personal consumption.

Traveling with wine into Canada

Canada can get a little tricky because you have to be mindful of your entry point into the country. You see, each province has different rules and regulations with duties and taxes assessed based on where you land not necessarily your final destination.

Traveling with wine into Australia

Safely Packing Your Bottles

1. Wrap in sealable plastic bags

2. Wrap in bubble wrap/clothing

3. Place in center of luggage to limit movement

How many of us wrestle with the pounds, trying to slim down our luggage so it respects the weight limits? When you consider that a 750ml bottle weighs in between 2.75 and 3.5 pounds, you can see how this can definitely get a bit heavy, real quick!

So, if you are bound and determined to get those bottles home for your personal collection or to disperse as gifts to some lucky friends and family, then you need to do the math then ask yourself: How much is the penalty for exceeding your weight limit for your airlines and is it worth it?

If you do opt for travelling with your wine in your suitcase, remember it MUST go in the belly of the plane. It WILL be confiscated if you try to put it in your hand luggage. And re-read the note above about how much you can put into your baggage.

How To Package Wine For Shipping

Unlike t-shirts, electronics, and even other kinds of food, wine storage and serving temperature needs to be accounted for. Individual bottles are weighty, fragile, and temperature-sensitive, so they have to be handled properly to prevent bottle shock in wine.

Be sure to check out our wine storage guide, too–whether for your own establishment, advising customers, or both. For now, check out these tips on how to package wine for shipping and handling.

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Importing Alcohol And Customs Bonds

Customs bonds are a necessary part of importing alcohol. CBP requires that you use a Customs Bond when importing goods subject to regulations from any federal agency or valued at more than $2,500. Because importing alcoholic beverages involves several government agencies, a customs bond is likely required.

A customs bond covers the payment of taxes and duties to the U.S. government. A customs bond makes sure that your taxes and duties will be paid even in extenuating circumstances, like the closure of your business or bankruptcy. Customs bonds are required for shipments arriving in the country by sea and by air. You can face delays or fines if you do not have the proper customs bond when importing alcohol.

If you decide to work with a Licensed Customs Broker to import alcohol, the brokers customs bond can likely be used to secure your transaction.

There are two main types of customs bonds: Single entry and continuous bonds. The bond type you choose will likely ultimately depend on how often you plan to import alcohol into the U.S. The differences between the bonds is easy to understand. A continuous bond is valid for one calendar year and covers all imports within the year. A single entry customs bond is valid for just one shipment into the U.S.

Work with a specialist to make importing and exporting to the USA a hassle-free process.

Shipping Bottled/boxed Wine Internationally

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For those that are working with a supplier/buyer that wants to purchase bulk quantities of bottled or boxed wine, different shipping containers need to be arranged. ISO tanks and flexitanks are reservoirs for loose liquids and cannot be used to transport pre-packaged liquid.

If you are shipping wine internationally, it will either be through ocean or air. Your only options with either are ocean shipping containers, or ULDs . Thus, your primary concern when shipping wine internationally should be how these spaces are effectively managed. Here are some tips:

Blocking and Bracing

We have written previous articles on the topic of blocking and bracing. The idea essentially involves securing the interior of a shipping container to minimize or completely mitigate shifting and moving of the containers cargo. This is especially important when it comes to wine bottles since the glass is so fragile.

After properly packaging and wrapping your wine, load them into crates with locking doors/tops that can be easily secured to the sides of the containers. There are plenty of helpful guides online that describe how the cargo can then blocked and braced using wooden beams, ratchet straps, and additional materials.

Gensets and Refrigerated Containers

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Can Wine Be Shipped For Free

You have a few options if you want to send wine to someone but hate paying for shipping.

  • Join or give a wine club with free shipping.
  • Join the Wine Stewardship program at It’s like Amazon Prime, you pay $49 per year for unlimited free shipping. Since has the biggest online catalogue of wine, this is your best bet for cheap wine shipping.
  • Spend $150 at on-demand alcohol delivery service Saucey.
  • How To Ship Alcohol To Another State

    When your booze crosses state borders, “you need to consider the laws for both the shipping state and the receiving state,” says Weinberg. So, for example, if you’d like to send a bottle of wine from a visit along Pennsylvania’s wine trail to a relative in Mississippi, don’t waste your time or your money. While it’s perfectly legal to mail wine from this northern state, it’s also perfectly illegal to receive wine shipments in Mississippi. In other words, Mississippi is not a reciprocal state, a state in which you can receive alcohol shipments from other states or countries, explains Lekkala. You can read more about reciprocal states and other out-of-state shipment rules here.

    Of course, there’s an easy way around these convoluted laws, too. Mostthough not allalcohol that can be purchased in one state can be found somewhere in another, so if you’re dying to ship your brother a new brew, hit the web first to see if you can find a retailer in his state that carries the beverage, recommends Lekkala. It will be much easier to provide a credit card number over the phone than try to send that brew between states. “Even state-controlled stores realize they’re losing business to other states and improving the range of inventories they’re carrying,” Lekkala says.

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    How To Ship A Bottle Of Wine

    Selling wine is one thing successfully shipping it is another. Itâs no secret that wine needs to be packaged well to arrive safely, but thereâs more to it than a neatly arranged box.

    eCommerce wine sellers need to follow state laws for every location they ship to, meet regulations for shipping companies, and more. Here’s what you should be aware of when learning how to ship a bottle of wine.

    Regulations On Shipping Wine Internationally By Courier

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    For businesses

    Depending on the countries of collection and delivery, different rules may apply. Generally, freight shipments of wine bottles delivered by licensed transport companies are perfectly legal and are even covered by CMR insurance. Authorised businesses can also send single wine bottles via courier services when selling to their customers, which is usually done under special agreements with the transporter.

    For individuals

    Having wine delivered by mail or courier from online stores is perfectly legal. However, when it comes to individuals wanting to ship wine among themselves, most courier companies include alcoholic drinks on the list of restricted items to ship. Still, many people decide to ship properly packaged wine bottles internationally, at their own risk.


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    Purchase A Wine Suitcase

    On my last trip to Italy I walked into a luggage store in Alba looking to buy a hard-cased suitcase in which to bring my wine home. Alas, I didnt make the purchase BUT its an option to consider.

    Another option is to have a designated wine suitcase one thats built specially to carry wine.

    The VinGardeValise is just that. Its a suitcase designed and constructed to accommodate a full case of wine of 750 ml bottles. The Petite Version of the wine suitcase is a smaller, carry-on size that holds eight bottles. Both feature removable foam modules that hold a variety of different sized wine bottles. Since the foam can be removed you can also use the VinGardeValise as a suitcase.

    For the larger wine suitcase, you can easily pack six bottles on the left, seal it up and pack your clothing on the right. Or pack 12 bottles and forget the clothes.

    The VinGardeValise is really a cool wine suitcase. Its impact resistant polycarbonate shell protects the bottles sealed inside the case. Oh, and if youre worried about the changes in temperature, which can wreak havoc on your wine dont be. The VinGardeValise is temperature resistant too.

    Another option I have found and used that I love is the Wine Check. Its super easy to pack in your own luggage and then insert a packed case of wine that can be checked as baggage. Its a lot less expensive than the VinGardeValise and gives you the ability to bring a lot more wine home.

    Why Does It Cost So Much To Ship A Box Of Wine

    How come wine delivery is so expensive, when everything else is so cheap?

    Illustration by Marina Anselmi

    Wine lover Karen Dalrymple, who regularly orders wine from online sites, has home security cameras. She has six Italian greyhounds, whose bark alerts her to anyone entering the property. And she works at home, so shes always there.

    If anyone should be able to order wine online and have it delivered without any trouble, it should be Dalrymple, right?

    Dream on.

    Even though the dogs bark, and I see the truck on the security camera, I get an email from the delivery company saying they couldnt deliver the wine because no one was home, says Dalrymple, who lives in Charlotte, N.C. The wine stays on the truck, and she has to go through the process the next day. And the next, until the wine gets delivered. Or else she has to pick it up at a FedEx or UPS delivery location.

    She says she has complained numerous times, to no avail.

    The problem is not unique to her. American consumers can buy computers, dog food, and even motor oil online, and get free shipping. Those packages show up at the front door every time and no one gives it a second thought. But not wine.

    A tangled web

    As Paredes knows firsthand, wine delivery is a complex and surreal knot of 90-year-old legal restrictions, shipping monopolies, tax requirements, more paperwork than anyone can imagine, and heavy boxes. And despite high fees, theres no guarantee the wine will be delivered.

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    Taxes Duties And Fees For Imported Alcohol

    Its also important to know that importers are responsible for paying all duties and taxes on imported alcohol. CPB and the Internal Revenue Service also collect excise tax on all imported wine, beer, and distilled spirits. Excise taxes are taxes paid on a specific product, like gasoline or alcoholic beverages. You can find a chart with fee and tax rates online.

    Additionally, importers are required to register as alcohol dealers if they are importing for a business. This must be completed before you start doing business. You can register as a dealer by completing a form. The form is available online as a PDF.

    Additional Requirements / Requirements For Some Us States

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    It is illegal under state laws to deliver wine to consumers in PA and UT. If you live in one of these states, please contact us for other options. In Alabama, wine must be delivered to a state store for an additional fee of approximately $4 per case of 12 bottles. You will pay that fee upon pick up. Côte dâOr Imports will be in contact with you to determine the most convenient state store for delivery. New Hampshire charges a state tax of 8% of the total value of the wine for direct shipments to consumers. This is to be paid at the winery when you pay for wine, insurance and shipping fees. Hawaii requires additional fees of 85 Euros/case of 6 or 12 bottles Alaska -shipping is possible for additional fees of 35 Euros/case of 6 or 12 bottles and delivery possible from June 1st to September 30th. Orders received outside of that window will be stored in Côte dâOr Imports US warehouse until delivery is possible.

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    Work With A Wine Importer

    If you simply fall in love with a wine and cant get it home via one of the ways mentioned above, ask the winery to provide a list of their importers in the United States. Most will happily give you the list and then you can simply place an order through the importer directly who can have the wine shipped to you.

    Often times you can also ask a wine store to place the order for you. Something to note though, that $20 bottle of Brunello will run $30-50 via the importers. In other words, if its just a few bottles you want it can be more cost effective to purchase the wine on your trip and bring it home in your checked baggage .

    Why Must I Select A State Before Shopping

    We ship from multiple warehouses due to state laws, so PRICES AND SELECTION MAY VARY depending on which state you ship to PLEASE start shopping on by first using the state drop-down menu to select the state where you want your items delivered. Once you choose your desired delivery state, our site will adjust the selection we offer to ensure you are only shown items that we can legally ship to that state. CHANGING STATES FROM YOUR CART MAY CHANGE YOUR ORDER! To avoid this unfortunate experience, it is best practice to empty your cart and select your state before you shop!

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    Can I Ship Direct To Consumers

    Primary American Source of Supply

    How much does the license cost?

    $15 per individual COLA that the party will register for sale in Florida per year

    Do I need to have money held in bond?

    Is there a representative license?

    Do I need to register products first?

    Yes each COLA

    Do I need to Post Prices?

    No price postings are made by Florida wholesalers

    Do I need to file my Distributor Agreements with the state?

    Do I need to file my Territory Assignments with the state?

    Are there rules on the exclusivity of territory or brand assignments?

    Do I need to file a report with the state on what Ive sold?

    Yes monthly, 4000A-125-2 Wine Shipments Return


    How is wine defined?3-1-2 Wine means any alcoholic beverage containing not more than 24 percent alcohol by volume made from fruits, berries, or grapes either by natural fermentation or by natural fermentation with brandy added. The term includes, but is not limited to, all sparkling wines, champagnes, combinations of such beverages, vermouths, special natural wines, rectified wines, and like products. The term does not include cooking wine mixed with salt or other ingredients so as to render it unfit for human consumption as a beverage. A liquid shall first be deemed to be a wine at that point in the manufacturing process when it conforms to the definition of wine contained in this Code section.

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    A leading London wine shipper replies: There are several factors that influence final shipping costs. It is not a simple matter of distance: for us, the cost of shipping a case from Chile is exactly the same as shipping from Chablis. This is partly because Chilean wine travels by container loads and by water , so the mileage difference is effectively cancelled out.

    Trucking by road is far more expensive than shipping by water. If we collect from the port of Buenos Aires, the cost is about 10p less per bottle than from Chile .

    However, if we collect direct from the cellars in Mendoza at least 12 hours drive from Buenos Aires the cost is about 25p a bottle more. Remote places with tiny roads or mountains that require smaller trucks and more time, will cost more. This is particularly true of parts of Italy, Austria and Switzerland.

    How bottles are packed, and the weight of the bottle, affect costs too. As do volumes: larger companies shipping larger volumes will benefit from sharper rates.

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