Fine wines require special handling and storage when transporting. Their delicate character and chemistry can be affected by movement, temperature and exposure to light. We recommend extra precaution when moving these valuable investments.
When you want to choose the best method for your wine relocation, certain measures need to be considered.
READ on to find out more on effective and efficient ways of moving your wine collection.
Wine bottles are unique items to relocate because they are fragile, often extremely valuable, and the contents are very volatile.
Below are steps that should be taken when moving your wine collection;
1. Have your high-value collection appraised by a qualified professional.
Appraise your wine before you move. This is important because if there is any damage to your collection during the relocation, you will have the documentation to obtain the full value in your claim.
Appraisal fees vary widely from area to area. Appraisers usually charge by the hour but can be contracted for a flat fee. The best way to locate a wine appraiser is through a local wine merchant who handles collectible vintages or you can often ask your local wine vendor for a recommendation for an appraiser.
2. Conduct a Legal Research to make sure you follow regulations of moving alcohol.
Some states or countries do not allow the relocation of wine across their borders. It is often regulated differently state-by-state, ensure you check with the alcohol control authorities at your destination before you move.
Ensure to inquire restrictions governing the types and amount of alcohol that can be brought in for personal use.
3. Pack up your wine collection appropriately.
Special care should be taken to protect the wine when packing. Professional movers are qualified to correctly pack the bottles. If you are packing the wine yourself, you may want to consider obtaining the wine packing boxes that are used to transport wine by the case on a commercial airline. These are made of Styrofoam or corrugated cardboard and protect the bottles well. You can purchase them at stores that sell wine in your area.
Even if extreme care has been used in packing and transporting, bottle shock may occur. The wine will shake within the bottle as it is moved. If opened too soon, a loss of flavor may result. Allow the bottles to rest for 7 days prior to opening.
Remember to pack the wine on its side, as it would be stored in your home.
Corked wines should be placed on their sides or upside down in the packing container to keep the corks wet. Please be sure to set aside bottles that have been opened. They may not be shipped with your unopened inventory. Individually wrap bottles and insulate the box to ensure your wines travel undisturbed.
4. Move in a Climate Controlled condition.
As a result of moving through different climates, changes in environment may affect the taste and appearance of your wine. Most wine experts agree older red wines’ delicate flavors need to be protected from shifting temperatures. They recommend a consistent temperature of 55 degrees for storing and transporting wine. White wines and less expensive supermarket brands are less susceptible to damage by temperature.
For a small, manageable collection, we recommend transporting the collection by car, where atmospheric conditions can be better controlled. A climate-controlled van can be used to move a very large or rare collection. However, arrangements must be made early and the additional cost may be more than you wish to spend.
The best time to move your collection is early spring or late fall. The temperature in the van during the summer months can be very high and in the winter there is the possibility of the wine becoming slushy, which can alter the flavor.
If your move must take place in the summer or winter months, you may want to consider moving your collection via a commercial airline. If you want the wine to be professionally packed, consult your mover. Your prompt delivery to the airport and pick-up of the wine at destination will limit its exposure to temperature extremes.
5. Fill out a high value inventory.
If a reputable moving company, such as Victory Van is relocating your wine, be sure it is listed on a high value inventory. This will ensure the company keeps a special eye on it, and it will help ensure that you receive the full value in the case of a claim.
The Van operator will prepare an inventory of your shipment prior to loading. When you reach destination, carefully check your household goods and wine collection against the form. Should there be any loss or damage; be sure to note it on the inventory.
You will need to complete the High-Value Inventory Form if the value of your collection exceeds $100 per pound.
Methods of Moving Wine.
1. Move it Yourself.
This is a good option if you have a small, valuable collection. We often tell families to move the items that are most valuable to them in their own cars if possible. This allows you to have complete control and peace of mind. Just be sure to follow our wine packing and moving tips above. You can also opt to have the moving company pack the wine.
2. Move with a Moving Company.
This option is better for local moves than for interstate moves. You can include wine in your move along with your other household goods. This probably the best option if your wine collection is not valuable, or if it is the spring or fall seasons, when the temperatures are not extreme.
If the moving company is relocating your wine, ask your consultant or coordinator if the company has wine moving experience and their method for packing and moving the wine. Some moving companies may even be able to refrigerate your wine throughout the relocation. If your wine is valuable and you wish to have the moving company relocate your collection, be absolutely sure that you fill out a High Value Inventory for your collection.
3. Hire a Wine Relocation Professional.
There are some companies that specialize in only moving wine. This option can be expensive, but it is the best choice if you have a valuable collection and you are moving over a long distance. Your moving company will have a recommendation or can coordinate the service for you.
Moving your wine - either by yourself or with the help of professionals - should be approached with caution. Therefore, to preserve the sanctity of the bottles while moving your wine, it is important to follow these wine moving tips.