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Booze Allowances for 2021


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The rules for next year have been announced (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/duty-free-extended-to-the-eu-from-january-2021), more detail is in:-

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/917005/Passengers_Consultation_Response.pdf

Duty free will be able to be bought on ships.

Basically we can bring back the following from anywhere without paying UK tax.

Alcohol

  • 42 litres of beer
  • 18 litres of still wine
  • 4 litres of spirits OR 9 litres of sparkling wine, fortified wine or any alcoholic beverage less than 22% ABV
  • Tobacco

  • 200 cigarettes OR
  • 100 cigarillos OR
  • 50 cigars OR
  • 250g tobacco OR
  • 200 sticks of tobacco for heating
  • or any proportional combination of the above

 

 

 

Edited by David Williams
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Irish Revenue and Customs have been getting increasingly aggressive of late, often suggesting to prospective booze cruisers heading to France that the EU paid rules and quantities are an absolute rath

You might want to factor in meeting up with all your Celtic cousins along the way , the ones you never knew you had , by the time you get to Belfast you won't have anything left to declare .

It’s good and generous for duty free but will hit those of us who bring back duty paid. Last time we brought back 120 bottles of wine and 48 bottles of fizz and vermouth that is not available in the U

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Seems pretty generous, doesn’t it, compared with what the duty-free allowances used to be?  I can’t envisage us ever wanting (or even having space to be able) to bring back more than that.  And I presume those are per-person allowances too (? - they certainly used to be per person), so you can double that for a couple.

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1 hour ago, David Williams said:

This could well influence the ferry market

I agree, this could be a real boost for the business models for the ferry industry.  I think it is generally accepted that, if there was any one single cause that could be pinpointed for the collapse in the viability of the central-Channel ferry services, then it was probably the demise of duty-free.  The re-establishment of the availability of duty-free, with generous limits like these, could see an upsurge in interest in people taking their cars on short and mid-duration ferry journeys to France.

Of course, there’s still The Tunnel, which was probably the other single biggest factor.  But it is not Tunnel traffic that these new rules are likely to see switch back; it is the cheap flight holiday traffic.  With cheap flights maybe a thing of the past in a post-covid future, the appeal of taking the car and benefitting from duty free may lead to a boost in interest in ferry crossing to places like Cherbourg and Dieppe.

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49 minutes ago, Gareth said:

Seems pretty generous, doesn’t it, compared with what the duty-free allowances used to be?

Yes the old rules were 4 litres of wine and 1 litre of spirits for duty free, the new rules apply to duty free or duty paid.

On our last trip we brought back 84 litres of wine (42 litres per person) & there is plenty of space in the garage for more - we are currently planning on going in 3 weeks to make sure we have enough.

It will be interesting what duty free wine offers are available on the ships, however getting it to the car will not be easy - I can't see BF wanting to continue taking wine to the car. Eurotunnel has an advantage for this.

Overall, I think that it is a good deal for us.

ps - not sure how NEX will cope with having a duty free shop !

Edited by David Williams
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It’s good and generous for duty free but will hit those of us who bring back duty paid. Last time we brought back 120 bottles of wine and 48 bottles of fizz and vermouth that is not available in the U.K. and that we tasted before we bought. Come January we’ll be limited to 48 bottles of wine and 24 of fizz/vermouth. Hardly enough to last a year.

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2 hours ago, David Williams said:

This could well influence the ferry market, the short sea crossings will have an advantage and they will be able to offer cheap/free booze cruises when you use their duty free!

This could be Barf’s saving grace - shortest crossing.  She would do well on this - virus situation allowing that is, as it is for all the fleet.

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P&O used to reckon duty free was a licence to print money on their short sea route..whilst the customs allowances are rather well down on what we can repatriate at present, as I read it the wine and beer allowance can be duty paid in the EU or completely duty free..

  Might be worth BF's while enlarging the onboard shops whilst their all laid up..Barfleur indeed could have a new lease of life

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7 minutes ago, Paully said:

whilst the customs allowances are rather well down on what we can repatriate at present, as I read it the wine and beer allowance can be duty paid in the EU or completely duty free..

  

That regrettably is how I read it too Paully. It could have been worse but won’t be good news for the day trip market unless of course BF reevaluate the cost of their 24 hour shopping trip rate. At £75 for a car and 2, more if you add on the cost of a cabin(s) the potential savings are virtually nil so not worth the time and effort...

Chris

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Back in the 80's when I worked for the railway I was lucky enough to have some travel benefits that I used very frequently & took up many booze cruise offers that were available during this time. The regular trip was Harwich - Hook-of-Holland on the St Nicholas with a few hours ashore before the overnight return. One other memorable & very long day trip I did was Dover to Boulogne on MV Tiger with P&O. It was meant to be a few hours ashore & catch the next one back however the weather was so bad the ferries were running late. It was very rough and the crossings were 2 hours plus so I had to remain onboard as a non-landing passenger to get back for the last train home. In those days several companies offered a non-landing duty-free cruise for just a few quid. 

In more recent years having made several over & back crossings on my favorite route to St Malo on Bretagne or PA, I often though this would be a good route to have a non-landing cruise offer where you can have an extra hour in bed while the ship turns around. There is after all very little time ashore, just enough for a walk around the walls plus a coffee & croissant before re-boarding.

Edited by Abbotsman
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2 hours ago, Tregastel said:

That's significantly less than I would normally bring back! Just coming to the end of last year's stock, and still hoping to get to France before the transition period ends. 

Will it last the two weeks quarantine? 🙂

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40 minutes ago, Fine Whine said:

That regrettably is how I read it too Paully. It could have been worse but won’t be good news for the day trip market unless of course BF reevaluate the cost of their 24 hour shopping trip rate. At £75 for a car and 2, more if you add on the cost of a cabin(s) the potential savings are virtually nil so not worth the time and effort...

Chris

I agree with you Chris. It BF exploit their advantage by being able to sell duty free, it will have severe impact on the French wine and Beer outlets. The on shore outlets will only gain by offering a wider choice.

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Just now, David Williams said:

I am not sure that you can get much of a wider choice than the Cherbourg emporium !

That was my point, although the same wide choice and excellent prices can be found at a very similar outlet at St Pol de Leon !!

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44 minutes ago, David Williams said:

Given that duty free also applies to onboard sales, Barfleur could become a party boat !

Sounds dreadful !

It worked well for P&O on the Pride of Bilbao however I doubt BF would advertise as such.

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1 hour ago, David Williams said:

Did it cost much to repair the suspension ?

Car had no problem with it - we’d upgraded from a Mazda 2 to 6 for just this reason. Bought the last 60 bottles in Haro then a short drive to Santander. Let the boat take the strain.

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2 hours ago, David Williams said:

Given that duty free also applies to onboard sales, Barfleur could become a party boat !

Sounds dreadful !

She usually is a party boat with the large groups of boozers having a day out..😄

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1 hour ago, neilcvx said:

It’s not the end of the world but it’s just another thing to add to the hassle of customs , I wonder how it will work at the NI - Eire border?

It won't be a hassle in GB, I suspect that we will just get a Red / Green hanger like the old days.

 

Re NI the press release says 

Duty free, personal allowance and the VAT Retail Export Scheme changes will apply in England, Wales and Scotland.

 

Maybe the EU needs to agree something first !

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