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Old 04-28-2013, 03:38 AM   #1
Oct 2012
Atlanta, GA
Posts: 37
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Question with some backstory:

I have a friend who is currently thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. As most do, he checks for mail at various post offices along the trail, where they'll hold packages for thru-hikers. I want to send him a package with stuff he needs (food mostly) but but maybe a surprise pick-me-up (read:a bottle or 2 of homebrew).

He said that the best thing to do is to use a USPS flat-rate box/envelope, because he can call in and "bounce" a package to a destination further up the trail if he can't get it or whatever.

I haven't looked into the sizes of those packages yet, but if a bottle could fit in to one -in a ziplock and wrapped in newspaper/bubblewrap- would there be a way that the USPS would know that I was mailing alcohol?

Any other general tips or previous experience?

Thanks Y'all.

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Old 04-28-2013, 03:52 AM   #2
mikeysab's Avatar
Aug 2009
staten island
Posts: 4,505
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They won't ask, so just don't tell. They ask about specific items like lithium batteries but its a short list. They don't ask if theres beer in the box, so....
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:55 PM   #3
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Feb 2011
Sheffield, Ohio
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I wrap each bottle in bubble wrap,then put'em together,& bubblewrap again. Then into a blue plastic grocery bag or two tied shut. Then line the box with bubble wrap & another blue bag with peanuts or something in it/around it for padding. Not to mention also for sound proofing so they can't hear the bottles sloshing.
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Old 04-28-2013, 04:16 PM   #4
mforsman's Avatar
Feb 2011
Astoria, NY
Posts: 244
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The medium flat rate will fit two bottles, the large flat rate will fit 4.
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Old 04-28-2013, 04:44 PM   #5
Registered User
Mar 2013
Posts: 95
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if you didnt bottle them yet, use plastic bottles

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Old 04-29-2013, 01:55 AM   #6
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Jun 2010
Carnegie, PA
Posts: 2,205
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They do ask if there are any liquids...*technically* it's illegal to ship alcohol via USPS, but that being said, people obviously have done it before and quite successfully...I've done a few beer trades where the other party has shipped using the flat rate boxes. It's actually a pretty economical way to send homebrew compared with UPS, which is who I've generally used. I use the "don't ask/don't tell, I've got an already well packed and sealed box here, just deliver it for me" technique with them, which is probably what you should do no matter what shipping carrier you pick...

Here's my (overkill) method of wrapping for shipping. This post further down shows various packing options (including previously used-for-shipping-homebrew USPS flat rate boxes). I like to use shredded up old bills from my paper shredder as packing material to fill in the extra spaces.
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Old 05-01-2013, 01:30 AM   #7
Dec 2011
Madison, WI
Posts: 280
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Just gotta say as a former thru hiker myself, awesome idea. Especially if mailed in the south, since the north generally had better beer (at least as of 8 years ago).
Hanso's Simple Sour Cider

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