Christmas Gifts: Sending Wine Abroad to Friends and Family

By - September 20, 2014 (Updated: November 18, 2014)

Wine image by Vernon Fowler, shared under a Creative Commons Licence 

Wine image by Vernon Fowler, shared under a Creative Commons Licence

Holiday gift shopping is complicated when you’re far from friends and family. Today’s guest post shares things to consider when shipping wine abroad for Christmas. 

If you’re considering sending wine, either a few bottles or a case, to friends and family back home this Christmas there are some stress-free methods that won’t cost a fortune. Some companies will deliver your chosen wine internationally and this cuts out a lot of the red tape compared to trying to send it yourself.

Sending a bottle yourself via the postal service and international wine shipping companies are the two main options when sending alcohol abroad. Which one you choose will ultimately come down to how much money and time you want to spend on this gift.

The “do it yourself” option

Choosing to send wine by post yourself rather than using a wine delivery company does take a little bit of extra effort.

Firstly you’ll need to do some heavy-duty packaging to ensure your bottles arrive in the same condition in which they were sent. Secondly you’ll also have to consider customs declarations and whether it’s actually legal to send alcohol to your destination country. You will also have to find a shipping company that will be willing to send wine; many courier companies won’t deliver alcohol.

If you do find a shipper willing to deliver then you will be paying delivery charges and in some cases additional import charges.

International wine companies

If sending a bottle of wine yourself sounds like a lot of work then the easiest alternative will be to find an international wine delivery service.

You can find plenty of these companies online and they offer a huge selection from wine producers around the world. The only effort required on the part of the sender is registering online, choosing your wine and paying by credit card. All of the delivery charges will be clearly stated during the purchasing process so you’ll know exactly how much you are spending.

What to look out for

There are a few points to consider when choosing your wine company and this will include minimum order terms. Some retailers will implement a minimum charge and this can be quite pricey; make sure to compare companies to find a price to suit. Additional local duties and taxes may also be applied depending on the destination country; for example a person in an EU country sending outside of the EU. Most companies will not ship alcohol to USA due to the strict import regulations.

Send wine from anywhere in the world

One of the easiest ways to get around the red tape on sending alcohol to the USA is to look for a company based in America or Canada. If you search online and find companies that deliver alcohol to both of these countries you will have no problem sending your gift from anywhere in the world. The bonus when using companies such as these is that no matter where you are in the world, the company will charge their local delivery prices.

It can seem slightly complicated to send wine abroad but it doesn’t have to be if you use a specialist. International wine merchants are one of the simplest options and all that will be required is your credit card.

This guest post is brought to you in collaboration with Tesco.

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Andrew is our resident tech-geek and is normally found lurking behind the scenes on CheeseWeb doing things with code that Alison finds mysterious. He comes out of hiding occasionally to write about history and technology. He loves castles, driving on narrow, twisty mountain roads and relaxing with a glass of peaty Scotch. Follow Andrew on Google+
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