Can You Send Alcohol in the Mail?

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Sending Alcohol in the Post

Many people wonder whether it is perfectly legal or not to send alcoholic drinks domestically or abroad. The answer may disappoint some because it is not always feasible. There is a lot of research to be done, for example, how many litres per bottle can you ship and how many bottles are acceptable for a transfer. The regulations may vary depending on the country or state.

It is pretty hard to send alcoholic beverages in the US and UK. Obviously, wine shipments are available for retailers who hold licences to do it - however, sending a bottle as a gift can be problematic.

Although challenging, it is still feasible. Some carriers accept only domestic alcohol shipping of 24% ABV or less, while others have different policies and can ship beverages of 70% ABV maximum. The usual volume per item cannot exceed 1 litre per packaging (this can also be different for every delivery courier).

Once you have the delivery booked, it is time to start packing your bottle. This is the most crucial part to ensure your gift safely reaches its destination. Read on to learn how to ship alcohol and prevent your bottle from breaking with our four easy tips.

How to Pack Alcoholic Beverages?

Alcoholic beverages must be shipped in compliant packaging. You should make sure you pack a bottle well enough, so it doesn't break and damage adjacent parcels. Bubble wrap, sufficient cushioning material and absorbent material might be of great help.

Since alcohol by volume cannot exceed 1 litre per one parcel, you must secure it properly in a container. If you receive permission to send more than one beverage, you will need to use a box with separators for each individual bottle.

Packing Instructions

Here is the packaging guide you should follow when sending alcohol. There are four universal rules:

  • Outer packaging
  • Internal packaging
  • Sealing
  • Documentation

Remember that poor packaging can cause damage to the item and cause leakage. If a carrier notices that your alcoholic beverages are unprotected, the delivery courier has a right to refuse to accept your order. To avoid such a situation, here are easy tips to follow:

Outer Packaging

Protecting the parcel from the outside is vital since the carriers do not exactly devote their attention to each box; their priority is to deliver everything swiftly. You should expect your parcel to be thrown or placed underneath a heavy item. Even if the parcel transit takes only a day, it is not a reason to neglect your packaging.

You should purchase a sturdy cardboard box that is available in any post office. Do not reuse the box if it has been utilised before. Otherwise, it can tear and break your bottle(s). Due to poor packaging, your parcel might not be refunded, even when insured. Opt for sturdy materials, or buy two boxes if the initial box is too light or thin.

It is advised to purchase a slightly bigger box than the bottle because the empty space will be used to cover the glass in extra material. When sending alcohol or glass bottles, you should request the carrier to mark them as fragile.

Internal Packaging

In order to send alcohol, you should wrap the bottles tightly. You can use bubble wrap, foam, and other shock-absorbent material to prevent any damages. The bottle should be securely closed and placed into a leak-proof liner or sealed polythene bag to prevent leakage.

Before shipping alcohol, make sure that all the empty space is filled up. To make sure the parcel is well-packed, shake it well. If you hear a rattle, repack it again, but add more material this time.

Simply using bubble wrap might not be sufficient for a carrier to accept your parcel, so make sure you do it properly to avoid any unfavourable outcomes.

Sealing

Once sufficient cushioning material has been applied, use resilient tape and seal the parcel all around. If you feel unsure, put your parcel in another box to provide double protection.

Keep some space clear for the label. You should stick it and fill it out in a readable way. Otherwise, your parcel may be lost or delayed.

Documentation

Usually, you do not need any documentation except for a label for private purposes. However, it is best to double-check the regional or state regulations regarding sending glass bottles and alcohol beforehand.

What Happens If I Send a Restricted Item?

Always indicate the correct return address on the label if you suspect that your parcel may be returned for any reason.

Before booking a delivery, you should always check whether or not the carrier can ship alcohol. The sender is always responsible for adequately packaging the item and declaring sensitive information like the parcel holds.

If the carrier finds out they cannot ship the item in your parcel - they may dispose of it. Depending on the delivery courier, they may allow you to arrive at their depot and pick the restricted items before they are destroyed.

The worst outcome is that the destroyed parcel might not be eligible for a refund. That is why it is essential to make sure it is legal to send alcohol or other items that can be restricted nationally or internationally.

Can You Ship Alcohol With Packlink?

Shipping alcohol within the UK or to international destinations is not possible with Packlink due to limitations set by carriers and other safety regulations. Alcohol and restricted items cannot be sent, regardless of their concentration. You can find the complete list of prohibited articles on the Packlink official website.

Instead, we do accept sending glass bottles, be it wine or oil, provided they are well-packed. If you are interested in sending your parcel with Packlink, we offer favourable and affordable rates for continuous cooperation and single deliveries.