how much wine can we take?

Apr 1st, 2007, 07:21 PM
  #1  
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how much wine can we take?

we are travelling from Australia to California, then Canada, then paris and Germany. we want to take 6 bottles of wine as gifts to friends. is there a restriction as to how many we can take? I know the baggage allowance weight which will be fine but just wondered how many bottles or doesn't it matter? thanks Kerry
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Apr 1st, 2007, 09:12 PM
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There is no restruction on the amount you can bring in, but there is a resitction on the amount you can take in without having to pay tax/duty on it. When you enter the US, you are allowed one litre of alcohol duty-free. After that, you you have to pay duty on extra bottles ( I think the rate is 3 percent, but higher amounts may apply for non-US citizens, I know the 3% applies to US citizens) plus any Internal Revenue Service tax. Take a look at http://www.customs.ustreas.gov/xp/cg...a/visitors_us/

In Canada, you can bring in 1.5 lites of wine duty free, go to http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/E/pub/cp/...61-e.html#P007 or http://www.goingtocanada.gc.ca/Visit..._Canada-en.htm.

For France, you can bring up to 2 litres of wine duty free (less if it is fortified wine), take a look at http://www.info-france-usa.org/inthe...toms/18000.asp. Once you are in the EU, you can bring up to 90 litres of wine between EU countires, i.e. France and Germany.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 02:01 AM
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Cicerone
we will not be buying any wine along the way only taking from Australia. 2 bottles will be given to friends in Canada, 3 bottles to friends in Germany and 1 bottle to tour guide in Paris. so does this mean we will have to declare this wine that we have in our checked luggage if it exceeds what you have told me and pay a tax? we have never travelled internationally before so dont really understand the rules applicable. don't really understand what duty free is either. thanks Kerry
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 02:47 AM
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You're taking six bottles (so presumably 4.3 litres) into the US and Canada and 2.8 litres into the EU The duty free allowances (ie what you're allowed to import without paying tax)are per adult. So if there are two of you, you're exceeding your allowance in the US and Canada (if Cicerone's right), but not in the EU.

There are systems in which you can import wine under bond if you're going to re-export, but they're designed for businesses importing thousands of litres, and usually involve systems and paperwork us ordinary mortals can't deal with, though any Americans or Canadians here might tell us different.

That's the explanation, but you're only a wee bit over your US and Canadian allowances, so locals on this site might be able to tell you whether their Customs are going to be bothered with such a small amount of excess.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 02:49 AM
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US is complicated by the fact the amount of alcohol you can bring in, and any duty payable, is decided by the state you land in. So if your arriving point in US is California, you need to read up on state liquor regulations. Any Californian fodorites can give you more details.
Normally any personal goods you intend taking out of the country at the end of your trip aren't dutiable, but alcohol is an exception - there is a limit for bringing in any alcohol, whatever its ultimate destination. You should also check up on Candian regulations. No problems in France: duty-free allowance from outside EU is 2 litres of wine per person, or 4 litres if you don't bring in sparkling wine or liquor.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:26 AM
  #6  
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flanneruk and alec
thank you for great info just needing someone from California to confirm customs rules. where do we let someone know we have wine with us? is it on arrival card we get given on the plane before we land in San francisco. sorry to be so ignorant but we have never flown before everything will be new to us. by the time we return home we will be giving others advice (I hope)we will be old hands at travelling!! cheers kerry
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:37 AM
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Unfortunately - you don't know how strict the customs agent will be when you land in California. Most likely you will have to pay duty (you put the amounts on you landing card)

But just a thought -- I know you want to give the wine to your friends -- but Australian wine is VERY much available in California. My local BevMo (a liquor/wine superstore-type chain) has an entire section devoted to OZ wines.

So you might think of something else to give your California friends and that would free up your allowances for Canada.

Just a thought . . . .
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:45 AM
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thanks for advise but we are not actually giving any wine to our Californian friends as he is an ex pat Aussie winemaker, whom is winemaking in the Napa now. taking some to friends in Canada and Germany. as we come from a wine making district in South Australia wine is readily available to us, two of our sons work at local winery and get substantial wine quotas. I suppose it is just a very australian custom to give wine as a gift. if I had some idea of what duty costs might be this may sway me to not take as much? appreciate all trying to help me.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:49 AM
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Then consider dropping the bottle for the Parisian tour guide. Do you already know him/her? Being French he might or might not appreciate Aussie wine and a nice tip might be more appropriate.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:53 AM
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the parisian tour guide is actually american and in our emails he said he has some australian friends and has enjoyed our australian wine immensely so I just wanted to be friendly and give him a bottle as he had mentioned it. tour guide is Michael Osman have read some great reviews on fodors and trip advisor.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 04:59 AM
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If you are NOT staying in San Francisco but are only changing planes to go on the Canada, then you wonít go through Customs (or Immigration) and donít have to worry about the wine.

However, if you are actually going to be staying in California or elsewhere in the US for a few days, then yes, you have to declare ALL the wine to the US Customs people. It does not matter whether or not you are leaving it in the US, although you can certainly indicate that to the Customs people. The above limits are PER PERSON, so if there are two of you, each of you can bring one litre each. You then may have to pay duty on the extra. It is up to the Customs people to decide whether you should pay duty; they may decide you donít have to, esp. as the amount is small and you arenít US citizens. Show them your airline tickets and explain that you are bringing the wine out of the US (they may or may not believe you, but itís worth a shot). I have found that if I declare everything, the Customs people are pretty easy going on not charging duty above the allowance, especially if I am not too much over.

I would not worry about the California state limits. California allows you to bring up to 60 liters of booze from another country. ďAdults traveling into California from a foreign country by... airplane may bring with them a reasonable amount of alcoholic beverages for personal or household use. A reasonable amount is not more than 60 liters (approximately five cases). See http://www.abc.ca.gov/permits/importing.html (They donít want you importing wine from another US state, but thatís another issue.) You do have to be over 21 to bring wine into California. I am assuming this is the case with you.

You will be given a US Customs form on the plane to fill out. If you are married, you can fill out one form for the family, otherwise each person fills out their own form. Examples of the forms can be found on the US Customs website I first quoted above.


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Apr 2nd, 2007, 05:05 AM
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cicerone
thank you for all the added info. i'm pretty clear now on everything. yes husband and I are in our early 40's so old enough to bring wine in. good tip about only having to fill out the one form on the plane thanks. and I suppose throughout our travels just declare everything along the way! we are not wanting to get out of paying taxes just need to understand what to expect. I did check out the US Customs page also feeling a lot more confident. only 13 more sleeps!! are we excited!!
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 05:14 AM
  #13  
ira
 
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Hi 64,

Good advice from Cic.

>don't really understand what duty free is either<

"Duty" is what Customs people call "tax".

Before you land you will be given Customs forms.

Declare the wine that you have brought, and the amount that you paid for it.

You may each bring 1 litre of wine duty free.

The duty on the other 2.5 litres that you are bringing will be about 3% of the declared value.

It is unlikely that a Customs officer will want to bother collecting the 3%.



Unlike when I returned from Europe in 1981 and had every single item that I was bringing in noted and appraised and had the duty calculated on the excess.

I then took my form to the cashier, paid and got a receipt, which I brought back to the Customs agent.

From start to finish, the process took nearly 2 hr, and the line did not move during that time.

I paid less than $2.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 08:36 AM
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I live in California and have returned with half a dozen bottles of wine and alcohol without ever being asked about or taxed for any excess that I may be carrying. Of course, this depends on the whim of the individual agent, so if you are asked, be nice and tell them why you have so many bottles in your luggage (you can't carry them on board anymore). Chances are that he'll wave you through.
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 02:07 PM
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Ira
thanks for info. like your story very much all for $2. maybe it was the customs officer first day (out to impress). also Ira thank you for the many replies I have received from you regarding our first trip internationally. i am just so grateful to people like you and others that help us novice travellers. I have gained so much good information that I know we will have a fabulous time. 12 sleeps to go!! cheers Kerry
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Apr 2nd, 2007, 03:06 PM
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Gadzooks!

I'm beginning to sound like ira.

Customs folks won't bother you for even $10. They aren't exactly overstaffed.

If you have a chance, could you bring me a bottle or two of Penfolds Grange?
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Apr 3rd, 2007, 12:07 AM
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Rastaguytoday

you wish!! my brother actually works for Penfolds and sold a very large bottle of Grange at a wine auction a couple of years ago for $78,000AU.

he didn't own it but was part of staff running the auction. he got to have his photo taken for the paper holding it, he was pretty excited if not a little nervous. just to make you even more jealous he often gets left overs of Grange to take home for dinner from special wine tastings he organises for international guests.

We wont be bringing Grange with us unfortunately our budget doesn't stretch to that (no where near it).
regards Kerry
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Apr 3rd, 2007, 12:50 AM
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What a nice thought, 64kerry! Aussie wine is available just about everywhere these days, so try to pick something that isn't distributed internationally. You don't want to lug something half-way round the world, only to find it on the shelves in the German wine shops.
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Apr 3rd, 2007, 01:33 AM
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Before lugging the wine round the world and through endless customs posts, go first to http://tinyurl.com/yse2jk

This is the online wine page for Germany's biggest department store chain. The wines featured here are available in practically German city.
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Apr 3rd, 2007, 02:07 AM
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flanneruk
thanks I had a look and yes there are a couple of bottles that we are taking listed but coming from the Barossa Valley we get wine very cheap (many contacts)so we'll just take them. if tax is only 3% of value of wine it shouldn't be too much to pay.
we may be sorry lugging around the extra luggage but we'll learn from it for the next time I expect. someone gave me advice the other day which I'm sure you know take half and double the $. regards Kerry
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