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Travelling - where to buy my booze

Travelling - where to buy my booze

Old Apr 20th 2011, 2:13 am
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Default Travelling - where to buy my booze

Hi,

I need to buy about 30 bottles of alcoholic spirit for an event. I'm coming to the US over Easter and am pretty sure it would be cheaper to buy it in the US than the UK (or in duty free for that matter). Could anybody suggest the best way of executing this transaction and whether there would be restrictions on what I could take back.

thanks
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 2:29 am
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by ihe View Post
Hi,

I need to buy about 30 bottles of alcoholic spirit for an event. I'm coming to the US over Easter and am pretty sure it would be cheaper to buy it in the US than the UK (or in duty free for that matter). Could anybody suggest the best way of executing this transaction and whether there would be restrictions on what I could take back.

thanks
In my experience of alcohol ( and I have a lot of it) liquor is cheaper in the US.

I'm pretty sure you won't be able to take thirty bottles through customs.....
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 3:04 am
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Is Calais still any good for this kind of stuff?
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 5:13 am
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Bevmo.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 5:18 am
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Depends on exactly what you want to buy, whether you plan on paying for an extra suitcase to carry it all back in, and how much worry you want to deal with. It may well not be worth it.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 11:06 am
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by ihe View Post
Hi,

I need to buy about 30 bottles of alcoholic spirit for an event. I'm coming to the US over Easter and am pretty sure it would be cheaper to buy it in the US than the UK (or in duty free for that matter). Could anybody suggest the best way of executing this transaction and whether there would be restrictions on what I could take back.

thanks
You will have to pay duty when you get back to the UK, may make it a lot more expensive after that, if you try to get it in without declaring it, and you get caught, then you will have to pay the duty and a fine, or have it impounded, in which case you've lost the lot, a trip to France is simpler, BUT as it's not for your own personal use it would be illegal as well
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 12:06 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

A bottle of Courvoisier VSOP costs £31 in Tesco, which is around $50. Local price is $43 (with no sales tax... That will vary by state). For 30 bottles you'd save $210 - about 4.5 bottles for free.

I don't believe however that you'd be allowed to take 30 bottles on the plane. There are limits to the amount of flammable liquid you are allowed to carry. So you'd have to lie and face arrest if discovered.

Now let's imagine that you decided to take the risk and take it on the plane... You'd need two extra bags - if you're traveling with BA you pay $60 for the first bag over and $140 for subsequent bags... Now you are only saving $10.

And you'd be taking the risk that none of the bottles break in transit. Alcohol leaking out of your case might reveal your secret, if not to the airline then to customs where you'd have to pay import duty/VAT at 20% which, calculated on UK prices would be around £186.

So basically, my advice is to go to Costco. Or Tesco.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 12:09 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by ihe View Post
Hi,

I need to buy about 30 bottles of alcoholic spirit for an event. I'm coming to the US over Easter and am pretty sure it would be cheaper to buy it in the US than the UK (or in duty free for that matter). Could anybody suggest the best way of executing this transaction and whether there would be restrictions on what I could take back.

thanks
Ask for the nearest liquor store. Asking 'where's the nearest offy mate' will be met by dumb looks.

If you plan on taking stuff back then the event wasn't worth going to.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

You'd be better off just keeping an eye on the sales at Tescos.

Depending on where you go in the US, you may well be stuck with sales tax and bottle deposits anyway, which add up pretty quickly.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 12:45 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

This is a bizarre thread!

Seriously - someone wants to buy 30 bottles of booze (I'm assuming full-size bottles of spirits here) for an event in the USA & people are suggesting they buy it in the UK and bring it with them????

Surely the question really should be...

-- I'm going to be in x-town in the USA and need to buy a load of booze - anyone got a recommendation for the best place to buy it from? (or because we may not actually drink it all then does anyone know a place that sells booze on a sale-or-return policy?)

That said - I love the idea of seeing someone trying to bring over 30 bottles of Vodka in a suitcase because someone on some forum has calculated that they maybe able to save $2.89 in total...

Last edited by TimberHut; Apr 20th 2011 at 1:01 pm. Reason: Typo
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 1:16 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Just make it at home, then you won't have to lug heavy bottles from pillar to post.

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Old Apr 20th 2011, 1:27 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Your biggest problem is bringing it back. You will get 1L free (per person) and the rest you will pay import VAT, customs duty (don't forget this one, you wouldn't be paying this at all if you bought in the UK) and excise duty on. You may also have to pay freight or other airline cost to get it on the plane and if you ship it/fly it over using a service you will have to pay for than as well as fees for inspecting the package and applying all the other fees, plus you wouldn't get your persona exemption. That will make it significantly more than buying it in the UK.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 1:31 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by Rumplestiltskin View Post
And you'd be taking the risk that none of the bottles break in transit. Alcohol leaking out of your case might reveal your secret, if not to the airline then to customs where you'd have to pay import duty/VAT at 20% which, calculated on UK prices would be around £186..
The excise duty for spirits is £25.52 per liter of actual alcohol so that alone on say 28 one liter bottles of 40% spirit would run £285. That doesn't include VAT or customs duty!
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 1:40 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by TimberHut View Post
Seriously - someone wants to buy 30 bottles of booze (I'm assuming full-size bottles of spirits here) for an event in the USA & people are suggesting they buy it in the UK and bring it with them????
The way I read it was:
"I want to get some cheap booze for an event in the UK, oh and happen to be visiting the US so was wondering whether it would be cheaper to buy it in the US and bring it back to the UK on the plane"

It's not entirely clear, admittedly.
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Old Apr 20th 2011, 1:47 pm
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Default Re: Travelling - where to buy my booze

Originally Posted by GeoffM View Post
The way I read it was:
"I want to get some cheap booze for an event in the UK, oh and happen to be visiting the US so was wondering whether it would be cheaper to buy it in the US and bring it back to the UK on the plane"

It's not entirely clear, admittedly.
OK if that is the case I'll let them off - not quite such a crazy question! Though all the same how do they expect to get 30 bottles back to the UK?

I prefer my vision of things though. They manage somehow to lug over these 30 bottles of Tesco Vodka without getting arrested and then turn up to find everyone guzzling $10 cases of Busch Light. Vodka? We don't drink that stuff round here buddy - help yourself to cans though. We've got 48 cases left in the basement.
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