note! If you have an international border story involving WA wine, please send email to mikel so I can include it (anonymously if you'd prefer) here.
Bringing wine from the US to Canada
Retailers (of which there are only a few) and the government liquor stores calculate the tax or markup based on the wholesale price. As a result, if you can find a wine in BC at all, it is cheaper to buy it there than to bring it across the border and pay a tax based on the US retail price.
Bringing wine from Canada to the US
We ended up coming back through Blaine after 5 days in BC with almost 2 cases. We left them clearly visible in the back seat of the car. When the officer asked if we had anything to declare, my wife stated "we bought some wine" and pointed over her shoulder to the boxes, one of which was open showing bottle tips. The officer looked at them through the window, and asked to see in the trunk. She popped it open, he looked at the spare tire, said "thank you", and had us move on. We decided to move on as suggested, rather than to ask for details of the laws.
On a previous occasion in the late 1980's, my wife and I attended a
wedding in BC and were there only for a day. We came back through
Blaine with 3 bottles of BC wines, declared them, and were not taxed
or hindered in any way.
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