Do you ever want to send someone a bottle of wine? What are the rules for shipping alcohol?
Can you send alcohol via USPS? Do you need to ship alcohol with USPS? This is what we discovered…
Is USPS allowed to sell alcohol?
The USPS does not allow alcohol to be shipped except under very limited circumstances. The United States Postal Service maintains a Domestic Shipping Prohibitions and Restrictions webpage. This page provides detailed information about what you are allowed to ship and how. Although alcohol is not banned, it is severely restricted.
This article will discuss how to ship alcohol. It will show you which shipping companies permit it, what legal requirements you have, and what you should avoid.
Is it legal to ship alcohol via the USPS?
The USPS Domestically Prohibited Items List will not list alcohol. You will find prohibited items (or forbidden) airbags and ammunition, gasoline, and marijuana. However, Hemp CVD (non intoxicating) is permitted but limited.
The “restricted” category includes alcoholic beverages. It states that alcoholic beverages are not allowed to be shipped through the postal system, except under limited circumstances. Follow the link to Mailability for a complete list of what can and cannot be shipped through USPS.
You can’t ship:
- Intoxicating liquors containing more than 0.5% alcohol content
- Intoxicating liquors promotion material
You can ship:
- Cold remedies
- How to cook wine
- Alcohol sent between federal and state employees who have an official purpose for the liquor, such a testing purposes,
Not to be confused with the USPS, packaging with alcoholic labels is also prohibited. Before you can use the packaging, remove any logos or labels.
Important to mention that alcohol cannot be shipped internationally under the USPS international shipping restrictions.
What happens if you ship alcohol via the USPS?
If you send alcohol via USPS and the shipment does not meet the requirements for alcohol shipping, the package will be rejected and returned to the postal system.
If the shipment contains alcohol, or is packed in boxes that have alcohol stickers, labels, or logos, the package will not be returned, provided you include a sender’s address.
Can You Ship Alcohol Via UPS?
UPS is a private carrier, and operates under different rules than USPS. Only certain conditions will permit you to ship alcohol with United Parcel Service
- UPS requires you to have a number.
- UPS must sign a shipping agreement for alcohol.
- To ship alcohol, you must hold a license under federal or state law
- You should be familiar with the state laws regarding alcohol shipping licenses and how to abide by them. This includes the sender and receiver states.
- UPS-approved packaging is required
- Your shipment must be clearly labeled according to UPS (and destination country) guidelines
- No one under 21 will receive your shipment
- Your shipment requires a signature upon delivery
- The package’s receiver must be able to identify themselves
The USP website has a number of useful information pages that will help you learn everything you need about shipping alcohol. For example, the “Who can ship wines?” page will explain how to become an approved wine shipper. However, it is not an easy process.
It is now even more difficult to ship alcohol internationally. The USPS has published an international shipping guide for wine exporters.
Can You Ship Alcohol Via FedEx
FedEx, a multinational transportation company, has different regulations. FedEx states that individuals cannot ship alcohol through their company. They will only ship alcohol to businesses that have the required alcohol licenses.
Approved companies must be aware of the specific state laws regarding shipping wine directly to customers. These regulations vary from one state to the next. All approved businesses must also sign a FedEx Alcohol Shipping Agreement.
FedEx has all the details you need to become an approved business on their page “How to be an authorized alcohol shipper with FedEx”.
The authorization process requires a meeting with a FedEx account executive.
FedEx reserves the right to stop any shipment of alcohol via FedEx if you fail to comply with these regulations. FedEx can either return the shipment at your expense or destroy it.
FedEx will not deliver alcohol shipments to anyone under 21 years of age, unable to show required identification or intoxicated. The shipment will be returned at your cost.
How do you ship alcohol to a friend?
It is easiest to send alcohol to friends or family members by purchasing your wine, then having the wine shop or winery ship it to you.
Companies that are licensed to ship alcohol should be familiar with the complex federal, state and local laws. Make sure to inform the seller about the destination where you intend to purchase alcohol. Some states prohibit the delivery of alcohol to individual consumers.
If you are not a business, the only way to ship alcohol is to follow the UPS regulations to become an approved wine shipper. The agreement document will include information about the winery and direct shipping states. After approval, you will be able to choose from a variety of UPS shipping options.
You can ship alcohol to family members or friends overseas by purchasing wine online. You can save time and avoid having to navigate international shipping regulations, restrictions, and customs forms.
Learn more about the USPS You can find out more about the USPS in our related posts. Do they buy back stamps? Does USPS require ID? Is a USPS tracking number fake?
You must be familiar with the laws of the US for wine shipping.
This can make it difficult to send wine gifts. USPS cannot ship, but FedEx and UPS can be arranged for shipping. However, it’s not easy.
It might be worthwhile to open an account and become licensed if you plan on shipping lots of wine.
You can also buy alcohol online and have the merchant deliver it to you.
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