Tips for Packing Glass Bottles in Luggage

Packing to go vacation can be a stressful affair, but when it's time to come home, figuring out how to transport your souvenirs can give you nightmares all over again. With Epcot's International Food & Wine Festival fast approaching it's a good time to take a look at the nuances of transporting liquid and glass in luggage.

Tips for Packing Glass Bottles in LuggageTips for Packing Glass Bottles in Luggage

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) keeps to a 3-1-1 rule for carry-on bags.

  • All liquids, powders and gels must be be no larger than 3.4 ounce (100ml).
  • They must fit into a 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag.
  • Only one 1 bag is allowed per passenger.
  • The TSA says snow globes are specifically prohibited in carry-on bags.

This means that any snow globes, bottles of alcohol, or culinary sauces you acquire must be packed securely into your checked baggage.

There are several watertight, well-padded, temperature resistant wine sleeve products on the market such as wine skin and vinni bag. However, if you can't find these in your area we've gathered a few tips to "do"it-yourself" and get your mementos home safely.

Precut Bubble Wrap At Home

Precut Bubble Wrap At Home

Before leaving home pre-cut sheets of bubble wrap about 8 inches longer than a wine bottle and wide enough to wrap around. These will lie neat and flat in the bottom of your suitcase until they're needed. Add a role of clear shipping tape to your trip-packing list (I just keep one in my suitcase).

Fold Extra Length of Bubble Wrap Over Neck of the Bottle

Fold Extra Length of Bubble Wrap Over Neck of the Bottle

  • Lay your bottle down on the sheet of bubble wrap.
  • Fold the extra length over the neck of the bottle for additional padding.
  • Roll the bubble wrap around the bottle and seal the edges with the clear packing tape.
  • For extra protection against leakage or breakage, always put your wrapped bottles in another plastic bag before your suitcase. Hotel laundry bags and garbage can liners tied in a knot on top do a fine job of adding the barrier to help isolate and insulate the package.
  • Finally, roll the whole thing in a soft garment.

Wrap Around Bottle and Secure with Pakcing Tape

Wrap Around Bottle and Secure with Packing Tape

When packing the package in your suitcase the most important thing is to prevent the bottles from shifting and knocking against something hard. I pack a layer of clothes, then wrapped bottles, then more clothes to the top and side.

Wine Bottle Nestled in Suitcase

Wine Bottle Nestled in Suitcase

  • Center in your suitcase with clothes on all sides.
  • Bottles should be positioned so that that the bottom of the bottle is facing the bottom of the bag in its normal upright position. This is important because a suitcase's sliding handle can damage the bottles, packing so that it is parallel to the bags internal guides will help protect the contents.
  • Be sure that the bottle is well cushioned on all sides; the softer the things packed around your bottle the more out of harm it is.

Do you have any tips for packing fragile items into luggage? Leave a comment below and let us know how you get treasures home safely!

Lizzy_B wrote on Tue, 09/20/2011 - 18:48:

Lizzy_B's picture

Thanks for the awesome tips! While I don't plan to pack any bottles of wine anytime soon, I want to send a bottle to a friend in another state, and this has given me plenty of good ideas about how to get the bottle there undamaged. :-)

The World of Deej wrote on Tue, 09/20/2011 - 21:24:

The World of Deej's picture

I use this method all the time for smuggling bottles of wine, I mean water, on board cruise ships:)

Aunt_Soozaay wrote on Wed, 09/21/2011 - 03:38:

Aunt_Soozaay's picture

Thanks! Just in time for my cruise on Sunday....we were wanting to buy liquor in the Caribbean...and now I know exactly how to pack it for the trip home!

Kristen K. wrote on Wed, 09/21/2011 - 19:48:

Kristen K.'s picture

So glad that I was able to help! I hope that it works out for you.

Tracy wrote on Thu, 10/20/2011 - 14:50:

Tracy's picture

Aren't most wines more than 100ml?

Kristen K. wrote on Thu, 10/20/2011 - 17:50:

Kristen K.'s picture

Tracy - Yes! The typical wine bottle is 750ml. These are tips for packing wine inside of your checked luggage. The 100ml rule is for carry on luggage.

Magic Mirror wrote on Sun, 09/30/2012 - 02:50:

Magic Mirror's picture

I have a small, mini bottle of champagne I am taking with, just enough we can toast our anniversary! I just did a search on the site and came up with your old article...I'm so glad I found it as I had fogot to put the bubble wrapped bottle in a ziploc bag! ug..that could have been bad! I'm back on track now- Thanks!

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