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Old 11-22-2008, 02:42 AM   #1
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Default Shipping beer

I need to ship some beer, but I am having some trouble figuring out how to do it. My original plan was to use UPS, but I went in there to pick up a package the other day and there was a sign that said they would open up and inspect my package before shipping. Will this be an issue if they see the bottles but can't tell what's actually in the bottles? If this doesn't work out, does anyone know any better ways to ship beer? Thanks.

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Old 11-22-2008, 03:01 AM   #2
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I've never had UPS open up any of my packages. If they wont ship it just turn around and walk out and go over and ship with fedex. Very rarely do I even get asked whats inside the box

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Old 11-22-2008, 03:13 AM   #3
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I forget who or what thread but someone said they ship under the label "Active Yeast cultures". Which is also true.

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Old 11-22-2008, 03:22 AM   #4
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You are shipping a yeast culture not beer.

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Old 11-22-2008, 03:54 AM   #5
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I'm no expert on US domestic shipping but Isn't USPS still considerably cheaper than UPS and Fedex?

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Old 11-22-2008, 04:18 AM   #6
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Realbeer.com: Beer Break - Shipping Beer

google found me this

Looks like ya gotta bend the truth a little and not use USPS even though its the cheapest.
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Old 11-22-2008, 04:20 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by giligson View Post
I'm no expert on US domestic shipping but Isn't USPS still considerably cheaper than UPS and Fedex?
Every BJCP sanctioned event I've considered entering always says specifically not to use USPS to ship beer. Rather than look up why, I just always went private.
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Old 11-22-2008, 04:28 AM   #8
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Below is my boiler plate answer, however each UPS store is a franchise and is free to handle this in any manner they please or the state of CT's ACB (Alcohol Control Board) got to them.

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Essentially, it's not legal, but it boils down to which agency of the government you want to run afoul of and what is the liklihood of enforcement, siezure, or civil or criminal fines.

1) It is against Federal law to ship alcohol via the USPS.
2) It's against policy to ship alcohol via Fed Ex, DHL, UPS unless you are a valid shipper of alcohol. If your package breaks, they may turn your package to your state's alcohol control board or they may return it to you, or they may dispose of it, or they may re-pack it and ship it. You are at the mercy of that employee.
3) It's undoubtedly against state law (UT inparticular) to ship beer. I read on realbeer that UT's ACB has siezed likely alcohol shipments. Google it.
4) It's against the law to ship alcohol to minors.
5) It's against the law to ship alcohol to another country without using a customs approved shipper. See beertown.org for information about their world beer contest.

So don't do #1 or #4 or #5. If you do #2, make sure your package is bulletproof. Don't identify the contents as alcohol. Don't get insurance, etc.

#3.... just move.

Deny everything.
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Old 11-22-2008, 12:39 PM   #9
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Thanks for the replies. I'll give UPS a try and see what happens. Also, I have two bottles generously wrapped in newspaper in a small box that allows little, if any, movement inside the box. Will this packing method work if I put "Handle with care" on the box? Thanks.

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Old 11-22-2008, 12:47 PM   #10
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Get an Online account at UPS.com and pay for your shipment with your credit card. Print out your pre-paid shipping label, tape it to the box, then drop the box off at any UPS store, Staples, Office Max, or any UPS drop off location that you find on their web site. Just hand them the box and ask them to place it with their outgoing shipments.

They won't ask what is in it.

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