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mailing stuff back to the states

Can you bring home wine and stuff on the plane?? If not will they ship your goodies back to the states for you? How do you know they will ship your gifts etc back, they have my money and whatever it is I bought? But you are so limited on what you can carry on a plane etc. Any suggestions

Posted by
800 posts

Pam - no you cannot bring wine and other liquids home on the plane. There is a restriction on the amount of liquids you can take as carryon (please read the 3 oz/1 ziploc bag info found on your airline's website).

Many places will ship wine, olive oil, etc. back to the states for you. We have done this many times at least with olive oil, books, ceramics. Try to use your credit card to pay for this because if there is any problem then you can dispute the charge. The only thing I am never sure about is the import regulations with regards to wine - it always seems to complicated for us to figure out so we have stuck with importing 40 bottles of olive oil instead of 40 bottles of wine.

Posted by
22152 posts

I know you cannot bring back 40 bottles of wine. You would need a forklift for your luggage. You can bring back wine and other liquids as checked luggage. I think the limits is around 4 bottles for booze. Sometimes the wine stores will have a shipping container that you can use for checked luggage. We have always bought back a couple bottles wrapped in dirty clothes with no problems. Don't know the exact regulations but have heard horror stories of shipped package hung up in US customs. So if they ship for you they need to know how to get your stuff through US customs.

Posted by
1589 posts

Pam, in this day and age, you can purchase anything, anywhere. Shipping wine back to Texas is a waste of time and money, since the product is likely available right now at a store near you. Have a great trip!

Posted by
1449 posts

We have bought pottery in Tuscany a few times and had it shipped back. They wrapped it carefully and it showed up, no problems. If you're really worried about them not shipping it you can send it yourself at a post office (then you're only remaining worry is it getting lost!)

Posted by
59 posts

Here it a link to the US Customs page. The link to Know Before You go will give you the information you need for what you can bring back into the US. Also is included information on what you can mail back.

You are limited to $800 worth of goods before you have to pay duty. You may bring back one liter of alcohol if your state allows it. Certain food products are not allowed. Mailed items will go through a customs inspection before reaching your home.

My brother mailed back a case of wine and the shipping time was 2 months and the cost of shipping was 160 euros. That will certainly make you think about that $20 bottle of wine again.

I brought back olive oil. balsamic vinegar, and a bottle of wine in my checked luggage with no problem, They were boxed and wrapped in bubble wrap and in a large ziplock bag, just in case.


Posted by
8647 posts

Mailing anything back from Italy, whether you mail it yourself or the store mails it for you, is Very Expensive!

Posted by
84 posts

It's no problem bringing back wine in checked luggage. And if you bring back more than the allotted "duty free" 1 liter (or whatever) it's really no problem since most customs agents aren't going to bother filling out paperwork to collect the 3% duty on the items (unless you have an enormous amount of wine). Just make sure you are honest in what you declare.

Besides, the 3% is really cheap compared to shipping costs, etc. etc., OR any sales tax you would pay buying it stateside. I live in one of those backwater states that won't allow shipments of alcohol (AND that doesn't have a good wine selection...especially from Italy...about the best I can get is cheap Chianti...LOL), so really checking it in luggage is my only option. That is...if Alitalia doesn't lose it... ;-)

For other things, I would ship home. It's easier than dragging it around with you.

Posted by
160 posts

I had no problem bringing back 2 bottles of wine. I packed them in the check-in bag. I wrapped my clothes around them and had no problem. I also brought 1 smaller one, 8 oz., in my carry on.

Posted by
864 posts

I've had stuff shipped home to me from all over the world. I always pay for items to be shipped with either American Express (which works best if something is broken in shipment) or Visa (just about as good). In 20 years I've never had something I bought not show up - might show up months later, but show up it did. I used to bring back difficult to find wine in my carry on. Now that option is no longer available. Having had cans of foie gras dented in my checked bags (what where those baggage handlers doing) I now pack a sturdy snap top box large enough to hold a couple bottles of wine carefully padded with dirty (dispenable if necessary) old cloths. My bottles arrive intact but should they not and leak the plastic box will contain the spill. Also good for bringing back other breakable items.

Posted by
805 posts

I agree that, if packed properly, alcohol is no problem. I carried back three bottles of tequila from Mexico in March and wrapped them in T-shirts. They all came out fine.