How Much Alcohol Can I Bring Into The Us?

How Much Alcohol Can I Bring Into The Us
One liter per person Can I bring back alcohol back to the United States for my personal use or as a gift? Generally, one liter per person may be entered into the U.S. duty-free by travelers who are 21 or older. Additional quantities may be entered, although they will be subject to duty and IRS taxes.

How many bottles of alcohol can you bring into the US?

What Is A Customs Duty? – Customs Duty is a tariff or tax imposed on goods when transported across international borders. The purpose of Customs Duty is to protect each country’s economy, residents, jobs, environment, etc., by controlling the flow of goods, especially restrictive and prohibited goods, into and out of the country.

Dutiable refers to articles on which Customs Duty may have to be paid. Each article has a specific duty rate, which is determined by a number of factors, including where you acquired the article, where it was made, and what it is made of. Also, anything you bring back that you did not have when you left the United States must be “declared.” For example, you would declare alterations made in a foreign country to a suit you already owned, and any gifts you acquired outside the United States.

American Goods Returned (AGR) do not have to be declared, but you must be prepared to prove to U.S. Customs and Border Protection the articles are AGR or pay Customs duty. The Customs Duty Rate is a percentage. This percentage is determined by the total purchased value of the article(s) paid at a foreign country and not based on factors such as quality, size, or weight.

The Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) provides duty rates for virtually every existing item. CBP uses the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUS), which is a reference manual that the provides the applicable tariff rates and statistical categories for all merchandise imported into the U.S.

Duty-Free Shop articles sold in a Customs duty-free shop are free only for the country in which that shop is located. Therefore, if your acquired articles exceed your personal exemption/allowance, the articles you purchased in Customs duty-free shop, whether in the United States or abroad, will be subject to Customs duty upon entering your destination country.

  • Articles purchased in a American Customs duty-free shop are also subject to U.S.
  • Customs duty if you bring them into the United States.
  • For example, if you buy alcoholic beverages in a Customs duty-free shop in New York before entering Canada and then bring them back into the United States, they will be subject to Customs duty and Internal Revenue Service tax (IRT).

Determining Customs Duty – The flat duty rate will apply to articles that are dutiable but that cannot be included in your personal exemption, even if you have not exceeded the exemption. For example, alcoholic beverages. If you return from Europe with $200 worth of purchases, including two liters of liquor, one liter will be duty-free under your returning resident personal allowance/exemption.

  • The other will be dutiable at 3 percent, plus any Internal Revenue Tax (IRT) that is due.
  • A joint declaration is a Customs declaration that can be made by family members who live in the same household and return to the United States together.
  • These travelers can combine their purchases to take advantage of a combined flat duty rate, no matter which family member owns a given item.

The combined value of merchandise subject to a flat duty rate for a family of four traveling together would be $4,000. Purchase totals must be rounded to the nearest dollar amount. Tobacco Products Returning resident travelers may import tobacco products only in quantities not exceeding the amounts specified in the personal exemptions for which the traveler qualifies (not more than 200 cigarettes and 100 cigars if arriving from other than a beneficiary country and insular possession).

  1. Any quantities of tobacco products not permitted by a personal exemption are subject to detention, seizure, penalties, abandonment, and destruction.
  2. Tobacco products are typically purchased in duty-free stores, on sea carriers operating internationally or in foreign stores.
  3. These products are usually marked “Tax Exempt.

For Use Outside the United States,” or “U.S. Tax Exempt For Use Outside the United States.” For example, a returning resident is eligible for the $800 duty-free personal exemption every 31 days, having remained for no less than 48 hours beyond the territorial limits of the United States except U.S.

If the resident declares 400 previously exported cigarettes and proves American Goods Returning (AGR), the resident would be permitted or allowed to bring back his AGR exempt from Customs duty. If the resident declares 400 cigarettes, of which 200 are proven AGR or previously exported and 200 not AGR or not previously exported, the resident would be permitted to bring back his 200 previously exported cigarettes tax and Internal Revenue Tax (IRT) free under his exemption. The tobacco exemption is available to each adult 21 years of age or over.

Cuba: In December 2014, President Obama announced his intention to re-establish diplomatic relations with Cuba. The President did not lift the embargo against Cuba. Absent a democratic or transitional government in Cuba, lifting the embargo requires a legislative statutory change.

Since the announcement, however, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has amended the Cuba Assets Control Regulations (CACR), effective January 16, 2015, to authorize travel within certain categories to and from Cuba and to allow certain imports from and exports to Cuba.

All travelers, including those from Cuba, must comply with all applicable laws and regulations. This includes the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”) (2016) limitations on personal exemptions and rules of duty extended to non-residents and returning U.S.

Residents. Persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are authorized to engage in all transactions, including payments necessary to import certain goods and services produced by independent Cuban entrepreneurs as determined by the State Department and set forth in the State Department’s Section 515.582 list located at FACT SHEET: U.S.

Department of State Section 515.582 List, On October 17, 2016, the Office of Foreign Asset Control relaxed restrictions so authorized travelers, arriving direct from Cuba, are now able to bring Cuban merchandise for personal use back to the United States and qualify for the U.S.

Resident exemption (HTSUS 9804.00.65, which allows up to $800 total in goods, and adults 21 and older may include 1 liter of alcohol, 200 cigarettes, and 100 cigars). This exemption also applies to travelers, arriving from any country in the world, with declared Cuban merchandise. Declared amounts in excess of the exemption are subject to a flat 4% rate of duty, and any applicable IRS taxes, pursuant to HTSUS 9816.00.20 and 19 CFR 148.101, which impose a duty rate of 4% of the fair retail value on goods from a Column 2 country.

Regarding goods: The Department of State will, in accordance with the State Department’s Section 515.582, issue a list of prohibited goods. Placement on the list means that any listed good falls within certain Sections and Chapters of the HTSUS which do not qualify for this exception.

Regarding entrepreneurs : The Cuban entity must be a private business, such as a self-employed entrepreneur or other private entity, not owned or controlled by the Government of Cuba. Travelers engaging in these transactions are required to obtain evidence that demonstrates the goods purchased were obtained from a Cuban entrepreneur, as described above, and should be prepared to furnish evidence of such to U.S.

Government authorities upon request. Evidence may include a copy of the entrepreneur’s license and/or an invoice and/or purchase order demonstrating the goods were purchased from a specific Cuban entrepreneur. Whether a traveler presents adequate evidence that a good qualifies from importation and that it was bought from a licensed independent Cuban entrepreneur shall be determined on a case-by-case basis by the inspecting CBP officer.

  • Imports under Section 515.582 (i.e., imports from licensed independent entrepreneurs not on the Department of State’s prohibited list) must comply with all current U.S.
  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP) formal and informal entry requirements, as applicable.
  • This means that, while there is no value cap on the amount of goods that may be imported under this provision, the applicable duties in the HTSUS must be considered.

In particular, HTSUS 9804.00.65 allows for the duty-free importation of personal-use articles from a Column 2 country when the fair retail value of such goods is under $800. Also see 19 C.F.R.148.33. HTSUS 9816.00.20 establishes a duty rate of 4% of the fair retail value for personal-use articles under $1,000 imported from a Column 2 country.

Thus, any articles imported under this section for personal use with a value of under $800 can be imported duty free, and any articles imported for personal use with a value between $800 and $1800, will be subject to a flat 4% duty rate. Any articles valued over $1800, regardless of whether for personal use, will be subject to entry and should be classified, appraised, and assessed duty appropriately under the specific HTSUS Column 2 rates.

Also see 19 C.F.R.148.101 and 148.102. Any commercial importation, i.e., not for personal use, is subject to entry requirements and payment of applicable duties, fees, and taxes. While these revised regulations may facilitate certain travel and trade with Cuba, all other laws and regulations applicable to international travel and the importation/exportation of goods remain in full effect.

  1. This means that all United States agency requirements applicable to a particular importation must be met and fully complied with, such as the regulations of the Food and Drug Administration, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
  2. Alcoholic Beverages One American liter (33.8 fl.
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oz.) of alcoholic beverages may be included in your returning resident personal exemption if:

You are at least 21 years old. It is intended exclusively for your personal use and not for sale. It does not violate the laws of the state in which you arrive.

Federal and state regulations allow you to bring back one liter of an alcoholic beverage for personal use duty-free. However, states may allow you to bring back more than one liter, but you will have to pay any applicable Customs duty and IRT. While federal regulations do not specify a limit on the amount of alcohol you may bring back beyond the personal exemption amount, unusual quantities may raise suspicions that you are importing the alcohol for other purposes, such as for resale.

CBP officers enforce the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) laws, rules, and regulations and are authorized to make on-the-spot determinations that an importation is for commercial purposes. If such determination is made, it may require you to obtain a permit and file a formal entry to import the alcohol before the alcohol is released.

If you intend to bring back a substantial quantity of alcohol for your personal use, you should contact the U.S. Port of Entry (POE) through which you will be re-entering and make prior arrangements for the importation. Also, state laws might limit the amount of alcohol you can bring in without a license.

If you arrive in a state that has limitations on the amount of alcohol you may bring in without a license, that state’s law will be enforced by CBP, even though it may be more restrictive than federal regulations. We recommend that you check with the state government about their limitations on quantities allowed for personal importation and additional state taxes that may apply.

Ideally, this information should be obtained before traveling. In brief, for both alcohol and cigarettes, the quantities eligible for duty-free treatment may be included in your $800 or $1,600 returning resident personal exemption, just as any other purchase should be.

But unlike other kinds of merchandise, amounts beyond those discussed here as being duty-free are taxed, even if you have not exceeded, or even met, your personal exemption. For example, your exemption is $800 and you bring back three liters of wine and nothing else, two of those liters will be dutiable and IR taxed.

Federal law prohibits business-to-private consumer shipping of alcoholic beverages by mail within the United States. How to Pay Customs Duty – If you owe Customs duty, you must pay it before the conclusion of your CBP processing. You may pay it in any of the following ways:

U.S. currency only. Personal check in the exact amount, drawn on a U.S. bank, made payable to U.S. Customs and Border Protection. You must present identification, such as a passport or U.S. driver’s license. CBP does not accept checks bearing second-party endorsement. Government check, money order or traveler’s check if the amount does not exceed the duty owed by more than $50.

In some locations/POEs, you may pay duty with either MasterCard or VISA credit cards. Increased Duty Rates – Items from Certain Countries Under what is known as its “301” authority, the United States may impose a much higher than normal duty rate on products from certain countries.

Currently, the United States has imposed a 100 percent rate of duty on certain products of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, The Federal Republic of Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the Ukraine. If you should bring more of any of these products back with you than fall within your exemption or flat rate of duty, (see below) you will pay as much in duty as you paid for the product or products.

While most of the products listed are not the type of goods that travelers would purchase in sufficient quantities to exceed their exemption, diamonds from the Ukraine are subject to the 100 percent duty and might easily exceed the exemption amount. For information on countries that may become subject to a higher than normal duty rate, check the Department of Commerce Web site.

  1. Countries With Free or Reduced Customs Duty Rates – The United States gives Customs duty preferences-that is, conditionally free or subject to reduced rates-to certain designated beneficiary developing countries under a trade program called the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP).
  2. Some products that would otherwise be dutiable are not when they are wholly the growth, product, or manufacture of a beneficiary GSP country.

Visit the Office of United States Trade Representative website for additional GSP information. Similarly:

Many products from Caribbean and Andean countries are exempt from duty under the Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI), Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act, Andean Trade Preference Act and the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act. Many products from certain sub-Saharan African countries are exempt from duty under the African Growth and Opportunity Act. Most products from Israel, Jordan, Chile and Singapore may also enter the United States either free of duty or at a reduced rate under the U.S. free trade agreements with those countries. The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) went into effect in 1994. If you are returning from Canada or Mexico, your goods are eligible for free or reduced duty rates if they were grown, manufactured, or produced in Canada or Mexico, as defined by the Act.

Additional information on these special trade programs can be found on the CBP Web site. Household Effects & Personal Effects – Customs Duty Guidance Household effects conditionally included are duty-free. These include such items as furniture, carpets, paintings, tableware, stereos, linens, and similar household furnishings; tools of the trade, professional books, implements, and instruments.

You used them abroad for no less than one year. They are not intended for any other person or for sale.

For Customs purposes, clothing, jewelry, photography equipment, portable radios, and vehicles are considered personal effects and cannot be brought in duty-free as household effects. However, duty is usually waived on personal effects more than one year of age.

Up to $1,600 in goods will be duty-free under your personal exemption if the merchandise is from an IP. Up to $800 in goods will be duty-free if it is from a CBI or Andean country. Any additional amount, up to $1,000, in goods will be dutiable at a flat rate (3%).

To take advantage of the Customs duty-free exemption for unaccompanied tourist purchases (mailing/shipping) from an IP or CBI country: Step 1. At place and time of purchase, ask your merchant to hold your item until you send him or her a copy of CBP Form 255 (Declaration of Unaccompanied Articles), which must be affixed to the package when it is shipped.

Step 2. (a) On your declaration form (CBP Form 6059B), list everything you acquired on your trip that is accompanying you. You must also complete a separate Declaration of Unaccompanied Articles form (CBP Form 255) for each package or container that will be sent to you after you arrive in the United States.

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This form may be available where you make your purchase. If not, you may find the form on the CBP website. Step 3. When you return to the United States, the CBP officer will: (a) collect Customs duty and any tax due on the dutiable goods you have brought with you; (b) verify your list of unaccompanied articles with your sales receipts; (c) validate your CBP Form 255 to determine if your purchases are duty-free under your personal exemption ($1,600 or $800) or if the purchases are subject to a flat rate of duty.

Step 4. Two copies of the three-part CBP Form 255 will be returned to you. Send the yellow copy of the CBP Form 255 to the foreign shopkeeper or vendor holding your purchase, and keep the other copy for your records. Step 5. When the merchant gets your CBP Form 255, he or she must place it in an envelope and attach the envelope securely to the outside wrapping of the package or container.

The merchant must also mark each package “Unaccompanied Purchase.” Please remember that each package or container must have its own CBP Form 255 attached, the most important step to follow in order to gain the benefits allowed under this procedure. Step 6.

  • If your package has been mailed, the U.S.
  • Postal Service will deliver it after it clears Customs.
  • If you owe duty, the Postal Service will collect the duty along with a postal handling fee.
  • If a freight service transports your package, they will notify you of its arrival and you must go to their office holding the shipment and complete the CBP entry procedure.

If you owe duty or tax, you will need to pay it at that time in order to secure the release of the goods. You could also hire a customs customhouse broker to do this for you. However, be aware that customhouse brokers are private businesses and are not CBP employees, and they charge fees for their services.

  • If freight or express packages from your trip landed in the U.S.
  • Before you return and you have not made arrangements to pick them up, CBP will authorize their placement into general order bonded warehouse or public storage after 15 days (days for perishable, flammable, explosives).
  • This storage and all other related charges (transportation, demurrage, handling) will be at your risk and expense.

If the goods are not claimed within six months, they will be sold at auction. Per U.S. Postal Service regulations, packages sent by mail and not claimed within 30 days from the date of U.S. arrival will be returned to the sender unless the amount of duty is being protested.

How do you pack wine bottles in checked luggage?

Cushion your wine or spirit bottle to absorb impact – If you’re bringing wine home from a trip, set yourself up for success the moment you start packing. First off, pack wine in your checked luggage, not your carry-on—it’s too much liquid to bring on the plane.

From there, it’s all about cushion. “To avoid breakage, start by packing a good layer of clothing above and below your wine bottle,” says Carrie Ann Karstunen, a former flight attendant and travel blogger, “It’s a good idea to pack shoes (I put mine in shoe bags ) around the perimeter for an added shock absorber.” Keeping everything as tight and secure as possible will yield the best result.

You’ll want to pack your thicker clothes on the bottom, the wine in the middle, and smaller and lighter clothes around the bottle. Finally, you should pad the top of the suitcase with thicker clothing like sweaters or jeans.

How much can you spend in the US for less than 24 hours?

Border reminder checklist The CBSA wants to encourage all residents returning to Canada to have a smooth border crossing. Help us keep wait times low: keep this checklist handy to help make sure you are prepared.

Plan ahead and check,

Avoid crossing during peak travel times like weekend evenings. Consider crossing at the least busy port of entry in the area.

Residents can to check in advance what you might have to pay on specific purchases such as electronics. Make sure your purchases or items coming into Canada are not on a list of,

Transporting cannabis across the border in any form, including any oils containing tetrahydrocannabinol ( THC ) or cannabidiol ( CBD ), without a permit or exemption remains a serious criminal offence subject to arrest and prosecution, despite the legalization of cannabis in Canada.

Pay attention to organic products among your goods. Declare any or other products such as untreated wooden souvenirs to the border services officer. If, know that dogs and cats that are three months of age or older need valid signed and dated certificates from a veterinarian verifying vaccinations against rabies.

These are usually valid for 1 to 3 years. Service dogs are exempt when accompanied by their owners.

Ensure that you have for you and your family readily available.

Acceptable forms of identification for entry into Canada include a passport, a card and an enhanced driver’s licence.

Declare all purchases and have your receipts readily available.

Residents can bring back, tax and duty free, goods valued at CAN$200 after being away for 24 hours, and goods valued at CAN$800 after 48 hours. There are no for same-day cross-border shopping trips so be prepared to pay tax on those purchases and possibly duty.

Declare all money or currency equal to or over, It is not illegal to bring such amounts into Canada, but you must declare it on arrival. If travelling with, you must declare them when you enter Canada.

Failure to do so means border services officers may seize the weapons, and file criminal charges. Most weapons are prohibited from entering Canada, including tasers.

: Border reminder checklist

Can you buy duty-free on arrival in USA?

Why am I unable to purchase duty free if I am travelling domestically? Unfortunately, you must be leaving the country to purchase from our stores.

How many bottles of whiskey can you bring into the US?

How much liquor and wine can I bring into the U.S.? –

U.S. Customs and Border Protection allows you to bring up to one liter of alcohol into the country duty-free as long as you’re 21 years or older. The amount goes up to 5 liters duty free when you’re bringing alcohol from a U.S. insular possession such as Guam, Samoa or the U.S. Virgin Islands. However, you need to buy at least 4 liters in the insular possession and one liter must be a product of that location. TSA regulations allow for up to 5 liters of 48 to 140 proof alcohol to ride in your checked baggage as long as it’s in its original retail packaging and unopened. Any alcohol you bring on board the plane must be in 3.4-ounce or smaller containers, but you may not consume it on the flight. State regulations limit how much residents can bring home. In California, travelers can bring up to 60 liters or roughly five cases of alcohol. Texas lets you bring 1 gallon of distilled spirits and 3 gallons of wine, but only 24 12-ounce beers. Check with your state’s alcoholic beverage authority to find out the limits where you live.

How many bottles of wine can I bring back from Europe?

10 Tips for Bringing Alcohol Into the US We’ve all been there: It’s the end of an amazing trip abroad, and along the way you pick up a few (or many more than a few) bottles of alcohol. Will you be allowed to bring all of them home? Will you have to pay tax? And what exactly does duty free mean? We’ve done the hard work of finding the answers for you, so all you have to worry about is making sure your precious cargo arrives home in one piece.

  • It depends, since numerous agencies hold jurisdiction.
  • Technically there is no federal limit on how much alcohol can be brought in for personal use, but (e.g.12 bottles of wine) in your luggage.
  • Anything beyond that might fall under suspected commercial use and require an,
  • The limits the amount of unopened alcohol that can be brought onto a plane to five liters per person if the alcohol content falls between 24 and 70 percent (up to 140 proof.) If it’s less than 24 percent you can bring more than five liters, but it would be taxed by Customs.
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Anything greater than 70 percent isn’t allowed since it’s considered a hazardous material. The to 3.4 ounces (100 ml), unless you purchased alcohol at a duty-free shop at the airport after clearing security. However, if you have a connecting flight within the US and go through security again, then that bottle of alcohol you were initially allowed to carry on would have to be checked.

To avoid this conundrum, wait until the last leg of a flight to buy duty-free alcohol. To make matters more complicated, each, and some states allow less than a case. However, the CBP says that these rules only apply to residents of that state. To be on the safe side, check with the (TTB) regarding limitations.

Oh, and think twice before buying that bottle of, It’s regulated by both the FDA and the TTB, and possesses a host of requirements: It must be thujone-free (thujone is the ingredient commonly associated with absinthe’s mind-altering effects), and can’t have the word absinthe in the brand name or as a stand-alone name on the label.

  1. Any artwork or graphics with hallucinogenic depictions will also get your bottle confiscated at Customs.
  2. Despite all the restrictions, it’s worth noting that is allowed.
  3. Besides following general rules for alcohol, it just has to be labeled.) Essentially, duty-free means there’s no local sales tax (commonly called Value Added Tax, or VAT, outside the US) on goods.

Stores can offer this wherever governments don’t impose a tax on items leaving the country; the reason behind it is that customers can’t use or consume a purchase until they return home. Therefore, travelers 21 and older can bring one liter (the equivalent of one bottle) per person into the US without paying additional taxes on it.

  1. For a full guideline, (DFA) answers the most commonly asked questions.
  2. There’s some debate over whether or not duty free is a deal, but DFA notes that duty-free alcohol can potentially save travelers anywhere from 25-50 percent in taxes.
  3. Just be advised that the US requires travelers to leave the country for at least 48 hours to prevent people from taking advantage of duty-free shopping.

Individuals are also limited to $800 worth of duty-free goods per month (including alcohol) and $1,600 for a family. This varies. A CBP spokesperson says it depends on the cost of the additional liter or case of alcohol and the percentage. Parts of the Caribbean are a notable exception to the one-liter rule (although the Caymen Islands, Anguilla and Turks and Caicos are among the islands that aren’t).

  1. The CBP says you can bring back two liters of alcohol duty free from islands that compose the, which include St.
  2. Lucia, the Bahamas and Aruba, as long as one bottle was locally produced.
  3. Even better, travelers are allowed to bring back,
  4. The catch is that at least one of the bottles must be locally produced, and the rest purchased within the USVI.

More than that would be taxed at a, plus IRS taxes. Another exception for the USVI is the monthly limit allowance: Whereas CBP typically limits individuals to $800 worth of duty-free goods per month, individuals can haul home $1,600 worth of items from the USVI.

  • According to DFA, travelers can find duty-free alcohol anywhere in the world with a tourism industry.
  • This includes airports, ship ports and border towns, but don’t expect to find it in some Muslim countries where alcohol is illegal, such as Sudan and Libya.
  • You can also find duty-free stores in some major cities; for example, Tokyo offers tax-free shopping to foreign tourists who are in the country for six months or less.

Most international airports sell it. Joe Bates, liquor and wines editor at, says duty-free alcohol is even sold at airports in Middle Eastern countries that are otherwise dry. “One notable exception is Saudi Arabia, where duty-free liquor is certainly not for sale at any of the country’s airports as you might expect,” he says.

  1. On the other hand, even though Dubai has strict laws governing alcohol, Bates says that Dubai International Airport is one of the top-selling sales locations for Jack Daniel’s.
  2. Some airlines also sell alcohol as part of on-board duty-free shopping, including and,
  3. Be mindful that if you bring your own carry-on bottle on the flight, the cabin crew must serve it to you.

Again, make sure the quantity and alcohol content adhere to TSA, FAA and CBP rules. This depends. Sherry Kennedy, the editor and publisher of, notes that while most major lines offer duty-free shopping, not all sell alcohol, such as river cruises and some boutique lines.

It’s also common to find alcohol in ports, especially the Caribbean, and Kennedy says the prices are competitive to ship stores. However, due to alcohol policies, most lines will confiscate your bottles and keep them until the end of the cruise. On the other hand, most port stores deliver alcohol to the ship for you, meaning less for you to carry.

Whether or not you, keep in mind that the same Customs’ rules generally apply. As already mentioned, the Caribbean is among the exceptions. When cruising, the five-liter allowance from the USVI includes the onboard duty-free shop, as long as one bottle was produced in the USVI.

Due to competition from online retailers and big box stores, duty free isn’t the deal it used to be, but bargains can sometimes be found. Eric Arnold, a member of the League of Extraordinary Drinkers and author of “,” says duty-free alcohol can be a good deal when stores are clearing out their inventory, and on more expensive brands, such as Champagne.

He also points out that duty-free bottles tend to be a little larger, so customers get about 25 percent more volume for the money. However, he says some of the best deals are on locally made spirits, since duty-free stores heavily promote them. Among his picks is rum from Fiji, scotch from Scotland, Bundaberg rum from Australia and tequila and mescal from Mexico.

  • Arnold says he’s also found good deals on scotch in Paris.
  • Bates takes the opposing side on deals.
  • In my view some of the best prices tend to be on well-known international brands,” he says, such as Baileys, Smirnoff, Absolut, Bacardi and Johnnie Walker.
  • If you are out to find a bargain, only buy when there’s a clear saving on what you’d pay back home,” says Bates.

“Domestic liquor prices in the U.S. are quite low by international standards, so it’s unlikely you’ll find huge savings, but it’s worth checking. Now everyone has a smartphone in their pocket; that’s not hard to do.” Kennedy says cruise lines often have deals toward the end of the cruise, such as two-for-one bottles.

  • Thanks to trade agreements, some of the best deals are found in the Caribbean.
  • In general, alcohol is absurdly cheap in the Virgin Islands,” says Arnold.
  • For example, he says Bulleit Bourbon costs about $40 in Midtown Manhattan, but sells for around $17 in the USVI.
  • He notes Cruzan sells for about $8 a bottle.

Kennedy also recommends buying Bacardi from Puerto Rico. She notes that cruisers are unlikely to find deals in Europe, where duty free means you get the local VAT reimbursed when you leave the country. However, Kennedy says that she’s yet to find a port in Europe with a designated agent to handle VAT receipts.

  • The experts agree that it’s not just about the savings.
  • Bates notes that it’s possible to find rare and collectible wines and spirits at Singapore Changi and London Heathrow airports.
  • As for Arnold, “I personally like to buy things when I know I’m not going to be able to find them at home,” he says.
  • Johnnie Walker Green, for whatever reason, has appeared and disappeared from the market multiple times, but I always have a relatively easy time finding it in duty free.” Finally, there’s another benefit of shopping locally.

“It’s the way to find and enjoy more things you wouldn’t have discovered otherwise,” says Arnold. : 10 Tips for Bringing Alcohol Into the US