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Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

Queenstown, New...
Level Contributor
3 posts
16 reviews
Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

My husband and I are attending a wedding in BC in August and were hoping to bring the Bride and Groom a case of a specific wine (which is not carried in BC) for their wedding gift. I have contacted customs who let me know that we are allowed 2 x 750ml bottles/each, and after that we would be charged 85% of the value of the wine for Provincial Tax, plus any other federal taxes or duties. I am wondering if anyone has brought wine in first hand, and how strict they are on the 'value' of the wine (i.e., I already own the wine, and haven't purchased it, so for me, there is no 'cost', but if I were to sell it, it could fetch a pretty penny)? And does anyone know anything about the federal taxes? I can't seem to find any information on that. Thanks so much in advance!

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
33,086 posts
62 reviews
1. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

Liquor taxes are pretty high here. It would be one thing if you were one or two bottles over the limit, but an entire case is unlikely to be ignored. Unless you got everyone on the plane to take a couple of bottles for you! lol

First thing to do would be to check the BC Liquor store wine list. I think that's what they would refer to for the calculation of the taxes.

www.bcliquorstores.com/product-catalogue…

I don't know if you might be better off shipping the case of wine. Just a thought. Might be worth talking to someone about that option.

Toronto
Destination Expert
for Tokyo
Level Contributor
25,948 posts
30 reviews
2. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

>> the federal taxes?

result #1 for googling "bc wine import taxes"

winelaw.ca/cms/index.php/legal-info-for-the-…

Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
Level Contributor
14,113 posts
152 reviews
3. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

The value of the wine will be what it would retail for in your location. You may be able to find an importer who deals with wine from your area who would import it for you but you would still pay hefty taxes. As a rule of thumb we figure when bringing in wine that is over our allowable limit you can double the cost of the wine..so a California wine that cost us $20 would have $20 in duty and taxes. Sometimes customs will take an "average" value of the wine for charging duty. Red and white has also been charged at differing rates on those occasions when we've brought in both. You may want to give them 4 bottles (LOL) or a very expensive wedding present.

Queenstown, New...
Level Contributor
3 posts
16 reviews
4. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

Thanks, everyone. Sorry, BIBIMBOB, I was going through the sites, links and documents sent to me by the BCLDB. I just assumed they'd be the most thorough, but your site was perfect! Wow - sounds like we may be ending up with an expensive wedding gift!! Does anyone know, I can't find anything referring to it, how they prove the price? The wine is from a very small winery in New Zealand and I doubt there'd be any way to prove the price. Or would they just base it off another wine of the same varietal from New Zealand? Sorry to ask so many questions...always hard to tell what the go is with bureaucratic regulations. You're right, TRAVELLER47, I might just need to give them 4 bottles!!

wgr
Vancouver, BC
Level Contributor
1,245 posts
120 reviews
5. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

If there are 2 of you, they will probably let you go with 6 total. Over that you are really risking it on 8 of 12 bottles.

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
6,858 posts
6. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

There's another wrinkle. The usual 2-bottle exemption is specifically for wine for personal consumption -- it cannot be given as a gift. I'm not sure whether the same technicality applies once you start paying duty and taxes on the wine.

Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
Level Contributor
14,113 posts
152 reviews
7. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

While MattinTO is correct about the " personal consumption" I've never been asked what I intended to do with the wine when bringing it in. And like wgr our experience has often been that we're allowed 6 bottles at the discretion of the customs officer.

I imagine that with the easy access to the internet these days Customs will " prove the price" by going online to find the winery sales price if you don't have a receipt showing purchase price...however they determine a price in all likelihood it won't be to your benefit.

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
12,201 posts
25 reviews
8. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

The BC Liquor markup is the biggest component...and it maxes out at 12.75 per bottle--that's likely what they will use if you don't have a receipt. Then they will add the rest of the fees and taxes as required.

9. Re: Bringing wine into British Colombia from overseas

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