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What food items can I bring back or ship home?

What food items can I bring back or ship home?

Old Aug 31st, 2010, 01:17 PM
  #1  
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What food items can I bring back or ship home?

Wondering what is a no-no for bringing home in suitcases. And also, is there any problem with shipping food items?

Is it worth it to ship wine back to the US, or does the cost of shipping cancel the benefit of buying there?

I have a feeling between wine, food and ceramics my credit card is going to be in trouble!
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 01:30 PM
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You cannot bring home any meats (even vacuum packed) or fresh vegetables, (this includes truffles), fruits or seeds. You can bring home anything in a can, jar or bottle. Cheese, which many shops will vacuum pack for travel, can be brought into the US.
As far as wine is concerned, there are many excellent small wineries that do not ship their products to the US--if you find something that you absolutely love from one of these producers then, by all means, ship it home. But don't bother shipping anything that is readily available from a wine shop in the US. Each adult can carry two bottles home in the luggage--just bring bubble wrap to protect them.
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 01:42 PM
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http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/va...restricted.xml
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Old Aug 31st, 2010, 06:13 PM
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J62
 
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There is no 2 bottle limit on importing wine. Each adult can bring back as much wine as they want (within reason, for personal use).

The 2 bottle rule is the allowance for duty free. Since the duty/tax on wine is about 25-30c per bottle, US customs has never bothered to collect any $ on the case I've brought back several times (and declared on my customs form).
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 03:21 AM
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J62, how did you bring the case home, bubble wrapped in your checked in suitcase?
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 03:30 AM
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http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-to-the-us.cfm
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 03:44 AM
  #7  
J62
 
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One time foam sleeves in my suitcases (not quite a whole case).

Another time I bought a polystyrene packing case right at the winery. It made for bulky luggage.
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 07:11 AM
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ira
 
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Hi W,

Keep in mind that airlines are now charging for checked luggage. This can significantly raise the cost of bringing back wine.

1 bottle weighs about 3 lb.

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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 07:18 AM
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Our family travels back and forth to Italy often. We bring back wine and cheese in our check in suitcase and have never had an issue. We always buy the cheese the day before we depart. Yes - some cheese can be found in the U.S. . . . and some can't.
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 07:20 AM
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We just pack the wine in the cardboard casing (usually provided by the wine store) and put it in the middle of our clothes . . . never had a problem. We usually pack about 2-3 bottles per suitcase.
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 10:39 AM
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I do the same thing--I've brought up to 12 bottles home at one time, in one suitcase, wrapped in clothing, but without the cardboard.

But I would only consider doing this if the wine were very special and not available back home...or received as a gift..


More often, I bring cheeses, interesting herbs and spices, dried peppers, tuna cans, dried pastas, and a litany of other stuff mentioned on the thread(s) I linked above and specific to the area of Italy in which I am traveling.

Not to mention leather goods, if the exchange rate is decent at the time..

Last time my suitcase stuffed with mozzarella was lost for almost two days on the way home from Naples!
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Old Sep 1st, 2010, 02:09 PM
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We brought back 8 bottles of wine and three large bottles of olive oil from our recent trip to Italy. We split this between our two bags and checked both, with no weight issues. We bought the wine sleeves for the wine, and then put them in the cardboard packages we received from the winery. We wrapped everything with clothes, and packed it tightly. Nothing broke, and it all made it home safely.

Regarding customs / duties, I declared everything, and didn't have to pay anything. This is the third time we've brought wine back - in 2003 we brought 12 bottles back from Italy, declared them, and didn't have to pay anything. In 2007, we brought a case back from Argentina, and again didn't have to pay anything.

We also brought back vacuum packed cheese, herbs and spices, leather good, etc.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 04:48 AM
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This is looking good, thanks for all the feedback, tips and urls to other threads!

Any tips on ceramics? Do I have to worry about bringing some home and then finding the same thing in a store or on the internet?

Anyone give me an idea of what shipping some ceramics to Virginia might cost? ( I realize it depends on what I would ship, just curious as to costs if someone has done this)
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 06:45 AM
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Where exactly are you going? You cannot put all Italian ceramics on one category...there is world of difference between various regions. If you are not going to the source of the ceramics, I would not expect many bargains.

Will you be in Deruta, Montelupo, or Vietri, for example, to name three of the most famous ceramic centers..?????
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 06:51 AM
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Here is the website for one of the popular food stores in Pienza; you can imagine that their products are fairly typical of what you will find in southern Tuscany; take a look at the offerings and the prices, and then do your price comparisons at home before your trip to see if it is worth bringing anything back:

http://www.emporiofattorie.com/enframe_na.htm
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 10:07 AM
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Ekscrunchy, we will be a few days near Ravello, and 5 days in Monticchiello, so possibly could visit Deruta or Vietri?

Ceramiche Da Lena, Ceramiche d'Arte in Ravello?
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 12:49 PM
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If you are in Ravello -- you may consider bringing back a bottle or 2 of limoncello!
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 01:20 PM
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Vietri is a great place to shop for ceramics. Certainly worth a half-day from Ravello if you are interested in buying. The selection will boggle your mind!

One of the only times that I've bought ceramics in Italy was in Vietri, long ago, when I purchased an entire set of dinnerware and had it shipped home for about $50US. That tells you how long ago this was! I still have the dishes and still love them...
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