How to Move a Wine Collection

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Moving a Wine Collection

move a wine collection

Because your wine collection represents a sizable investment, every precaution should be taken prior to moving to ensure its safe transportation.

Appraisal

  • Have your high-value collection appraised by a qualified person. Appraisal fees very widely from area to area. Appraisers charge either an hourly rate or a flat fee. The best way to locate a wine appraiser is through a local wine merchant who keeps abreast of current values on certain vintages.
  • Photograph your collection to document its contents.
  • Let your moving representative know you will be moving wine or other high-value items.
  • Special arrangements may be necessary to ensure your collection will reach its destination safely.
  • You will need to complete the High-Value Inventory Form to assure that your collection is not limited to minimal liability. The form will be provided by your United sales representative during the pre-move survey. Your mover will explain the protection plans from which you may choose. Replacement protection offered by most major moving companies affords you the best possible coverage against loss or damage in transit. If you choose United’s Full Value Coverage Plan, we recommend that you provide copies of the appraisal to your sales representatives.

Legal considerations

Check with the alcohol beverage control authorities in your destination state before you move. Some states have restrictions governing the amount of alcohol that can be brought in for personal use.

Temperature
Most wine experts agree the older the wine, the more delicate its flavor.

  • Extreme changes in the temperature may affect the taste and appearance of your wine.
  • The best temperature for storing and transporting wine is 55 degrees.
  • 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. Ask your United agent for details.
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.

Packing

Take care to prepare your wine for the move. United has specially designed boxes to pack fragile items. If you plan to do the packing yourself, boxes may be purchased from your local United agent.

  • Corked wines should be placed on their sides or upside down in the packing container to keep the corks wet.
  • Do not pack bottles that have been opened.
  • Label the box FRAGILE – THIS SIDE UP.
  • Even if you use extreme care in packing your wine, “bottle shock” may occur from the wine shaking within the bottle as it is moved. If opened too soon, a loss of flavor may result. To prevent this, be sure to allow the bottles to rest at your destination at least seven days for every day your shipment is in transit.

Final thoughts

Mesa Moving and Storage 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. Contact Mesa Moving and Storage who will help you complete a claim form.

Fill out this Contact Form for a Free Moving Estimate 

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