Wine Luggage

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R. Gleiberm@n
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Wine Luggage

#1 Post by R. Gleiberm@n » June 27th, 2020, 9:00 am

Looking for suggestions and recccos. I want to check a bag with 8-12 bottles on the plane. Any real world experience? Weight issues...above 50 lbs.? VinGarde Valise? CasePro? Wine check?

Anybody in midAtlantic area have one I could borrow for a good trade?
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Chris Crutchfield
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Re: Wine Luggage

#2 Post by Chris Crutchfield » June 27th, 2020, 9:36 am

I have both a Vingardevalise (12 bottle) and a winecheck. There are pros and cons to both, which means that they can perhaps complement each other as they fit different use cases.

VGV:
- Strap design is completely stupid, don't even bother. They don't secure anything and fall off constantly. Just don't even put them on.
- Accessories (other foam inserts) are stupidly expensive. Some bottle shapes won't fit into the standard inserts.
- Worth getting if you have airline status or a credit card that confers free luggage checking, because you're going to be checking this thing both ways.
- Bag is generally good quality and roller wheels are pretty convenient.
- Can remove the foam inserts for one side and have it function as half-wine and half-luggage.

Winecheck:
- I probably trust an ISTA-approved shipper box more than I trust the hard shell + foam insert of the VGV with respect to protection from damage
- Since the shipper box is interchangeable, you can easily and very cheaply swap it out for a different one if you want to transport a different bottle size or if the old one gets too ratty.
- Folds up very compactly, meaning if you are planning on flying out somewhere and returning with wine, you can fly out without having to check the bag.
- Rolling design is really dumb and hard to use. The pull strap is just plain awkward.
- I think this bag is much more likely to get flagged by the airline as "oversized luggage" and unloaded separately from the rest of your luggage. Even though I don't think it's that much bigger than the VGV.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#3 Post by NickRut » June 27th, 2020, 10:10 am

I've had good experience with the Winecheck. It is awkward to move with though. The straps and wheels don't really work great but I've flown with it loaded about 10 times and never had an issue.
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Kirk.Grant
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Re: Wine Luggage

#4 Post by Kirk.Grant » June 27th, 2020, 10:52 am

I just used the wine check last March. It worked well for both wine & bourbon we planned to consume on vacation. It is awkward as all Fu@k though. I just bought the VGV when they had the half off coupon. I'm looking forward to checking that thing out and seeing how it travels as it seems far easier to get through the airport with the wheels.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#5 Post by Joe W i n o g r a d » June 27th, 2020, 11:06 am

I have travelled with the wine check many times and often with two. I like it but my strategy is - wherever I am - to always get a luggage cart.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#6 Post by Chris Crutchfield » June 27th, 2020, 11:32 am

Joe W i n o g r a d wrote:
June 27th, 2020, 11:06 am
I have travelled with the wine check many times and often with two. I like it but my strategy is - wherever I am - to always get a luggage cart.
Seems like you might as well just save yourself some hassle and check the shipper box instead. The whole point of the thing is that it's supposed to make it easier to lug around a box of wine through the airport. The ridiculous strap-and-wheels mechanism often seems like more of a hindrance than a help.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#7 Post by DanielP » June 27th, 2020, 12:10 pm

The wine check is super awkward to carry around because of the length of the strap and the angle at which it is held. Usually not a huge deal unless it's completely full. Still much more convenient than a box with no wheels and overall I still like it
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Re: Wine Luggage

#8 Post by Danny L. » June 27th, 2020, 12:19 pm

I also have both and have traveled extensively with both.

The VGV is luggage. It works like a mid tier spinner bag with decent wheels and handle. The shell is hard enough to take a beating. The foam inserts fit most, but not all bottles. Standard Bordeaux bottles are great. Fat champagne and other oddly shaped bottles aren’t great. I like that the bag is split in half so you can choose to use half of it for your normal stuff and bring a half case of wine. It is heavier than the wine check—but I haven’t had many weight issues. I suppose a case full of heavy Cabernet bottles could push you over 50lbs. I use this as my multi purpose bag.

The wine check is only useful if I know that I will be packing a case or more of wine. It doesn’t add much padding, and as previously noted, its strap/handle sucks. It works best when it’s heavily laden. It is really annoying when it’s empty as the thing just sort of flails around. You also have to make sure that you have the correct sized case shipper—I have had issues with shippers that are slightly too tall to fit, which means that the wine check won’t zip up. I generally use the wine check as a one way device—I load up the wine check for a trip and at the end I dispose the shipper, wrap up the wine check in masking tape, and bring it as carryon onto the plane, and vice versa when I carry it on empty and bring it back full. In the end, wheels > carrying a case of wine.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#9 Post by Brian S t o t t e r » June 27th, 2020, 12:29 pm

I used the Wine Check when I traveled to the Mosel in 2018. Brought back a full case in it, had no problems.
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Robert R
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Re: Wine Luggage

#10 Post by Robert R » June 27th, 2020, 2:19 pm

I have traveled all over the US and the world with Wine Check. Although awakened to roll, it works and the wine is maximally protected. However, what I really love about it, is that with 12 bottles it weighs in at 49 lbs.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#11 Post by Mike C. » June 27th, 2020, 2:19 pm

I have a Pelican 1440 with pick and pluck foam and pulled out enough to fit eight bottles. Solid as a rock.
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Charlie A
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Re: Wine Luggage

#12 Post by Charlie A » June 27th, 2020, 3:38 pm

I find the Wine Check much easier to roll if you loop the strap under the handle.

I also use a luggage strap to keep it compact and easily carried by the handle when empty.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#13 Post by Gus Siokis » June 27th, 2020, 5:38 pm

I have the VGV and Wine Check....agree with all the comments above. Traveled with both to France and Italy last year....
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R. Gleiberm@n
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Re: Wine Luggage

#14 Post by R. Gleiberm@n » June 27th, 2020, 6:17 pm

Kirk.Grant wrote:
June 27th, 2020, 10:52 am
I just used the wine check last March. It worked well for both wine & bourbon we planned to consume on vacation. It is awkward as all Fu@k though. I just bought the VGV when they had the half off coupon. I'm looking forward to checking that thing out and seeing how it travels as it seems far easier to get through the airport with the wheels.
Where did you get the coupon?
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Re: Wine Luggage

#15 Post by SZZimmermann » June 27th, 2020, 6:38 pm

VGV didn’t actually have a “coupon”. It was a flash sale, communicated via email. Perhaps you should sign up on their list.

I bought one. I had problems lugging my wine check so bought the VGV. I haven’t used—nowhere to go.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#16 Post by Joe S. » June 27th, 2020, 7:32 pm

I have both the Wine Check and the VGV and use the VGV the most (trips to France, Italy, Napa, etc.). I also solved the VGV strap issue by running both straps through the center handles which keeps them from sliding off. It's a tight fit but it has worked for me. I also had a strap break one time and VGV sent me two new ones for free. One issue with both is that if the bottles are heavy (champagne, etc) then you can only load 11 instead of 12 to keep from going over the 50# airline limit.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#17 Post by Kirk.Grant » June 27th, 2020, 8:59 pm

R. Gleiberm@n wrote:
June 27th, 2020, 6:17 pm
Kirk.Grant wrote:
June 27th, 2020, 10:52 am
I just used the wine check last March. It worked well for both wine & bourbon we planned to consume on vacation. It is awkward as all Fu@k though. I just bought the VGV when they had the half off coupon. I'm looking forward to checking that thing out and seeing how it travels as it seems far easier to get through the airport with the wheels.
Where did you get the coupon?
It was on the VGV website in April...just posted in a banner.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#18 Post by Jason T » June 28th, 2020, 3:03 am

I’ve got both. Started with the Wine Check and then upgraded to the VGV for the reasons others have stated.

One thing I do like about the VGV is the ability to also use it as a suitcase. If my wife and I are doing a quick weekend trip somewhere, we can bring 6 bottles with us and use the other half to store stuff. That’s pretty nice.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#19 Post by Anthony C » June 28th, 2020, 3:28 am

I don't know the brand, but we saw them everywhere for sale in Napa. It folds flat to take on your vacation and then you purchase a case box with styrofoam at your destination and it fits inside this soft sided case. It has wheels and a strap handle, which make navigating easier, but not as good as a real suitcase.

We bought it at the Grgich winery in Napa for $50, saw the same thing at other wineries for more and oddly enough "unbranded" ones for $75.

It has survived four trips total now checked with no breakage. But it is only as good as the box and insert you put inside it.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#20 Post by markjchambers » June 28th, 2020, 4:12 pm

This has probably been covered before, but a styrofoam shipper is a cost effective solution. That and a roll of packing tape have served me well. I've brought back many cases of wine from multiple trips to California and Europe. Since the box is light, a case is usually ~42 lbs. They've always come in under 50 lbs. The box can get pretty beat up, but I've never lost a bottle.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#21 Post by David Glasser » June 28th, 2020, 4:52 pm

Wine Check works beautifully, is the value play, and can handle a whole case of wine without adding weight. You could just use a styrofoam shipper without the Wine Check but without wheels you’ll have a heavy, awkward box to lug.

I also own a 6-bottle Wine Cruzer which is even sturdier and easier to roll than a Wine Check. It’s my go-to if I’m bringing 6 bottles or less. They cost hundreds and are heavy, to the point where a full-case-sized one would result in overweight charges.

I’ve never owned a VinGarde Valise and haven’t been tempted to buy one.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#22 Post by Charles Weiss » June 29th, 2020, 6:10 pm

I've used my Wine Check many times, and have never had a problem with damage to contents. Yes the strap isn't ideal (I think better for shorter people but I don't have the cojones to ask my wife to take it), but I've certainly towed it around cities and been glad I had the wheels. It has gone to oversize luggage once but generally not.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#23 Post by Mike R » June 29th, 2020, 6:18 pm

I've always checked wine in a cardboard shipping box, with standard packaging and some news paper stuffed in the case. I've done this probably 5-6 times and never had a bottle break. Just make sure you are right at the baggage claim and cushion it when it hits the rail when it first hits the baggage claim.
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Re: Wine Luggage

#24 Post by Colin Haggerty » June 29th, 2020, 6:51 pm

VGV has worked great for me. I transport wine to and from both of my homes. The wines are secure, easily checked with baggage and are typically at cellar temperature when I unload them after my 3-4 hour trip (counting Uber + flight+ rental car, or vice versa).

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Re: Wine Luggage

#25 Post by Steven Pumilia » June 30th, 2020, 9:44 am

I have the 8 bottle Winecruzer. It a Pelican Case with foam cutouts, wheels and telecoping handle.
Filled it weighs less than 50 pounds. I have taken it all over the world with zero breakage or issues.
https://winecruzer.com/8pack-winecarrierwheel.html

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Re: Wine Luggage

#26 Post by Mich@el Ch@ng » June 30th, 2020, 10:01 am

Steven Pumilia wrote:
June 30th, 2020, 9:44 am
I have the 8 bottle Winecruzer. It a Pelican Case with foam cutouts, wheels and telecoping handle.
Filled it weighs less than 50 pounds. I have taken it all over the world with zero breakage or issues.
https://winecruzer.com/8pack-winecarrierwheel.html
That seems like the most durable option. Does it fit champagne/burgs?

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Re: Wine Luggage

#27 Post by Steven Pumilia » June 30th, 2020, 10:37 am

Yes it fits Burgs and Champagne..... and a sidenote, it very well insulated and bottles hold their temp pretty well.
The only gotcha is the 2 slots immediatey above the wheels are a little shorter than the others.... so very tall bottles will not fit in those 2 slots.
Unless you want to pack 8 Rieslings it is not an issue. Most 750s fit in every slot.
It's pricey, but I have had it over a decade (in fact, my address tag is still an old Northwest one) and it can take a real beating.

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Re: Wine Luggage

#28 Post by David Glasser » July 1st, 2020, 11:05 am

Steven Pumilia wrote:
June 30th, 2020, 10:37 am
Yes it fits Burgs and Champagne..... and a sidenote, it very well insulated and bottles hold their temp pretty well.
The only gotcha is the 2 slots immediatey above the wheels are a little shorter than the others.... so very tall bottles will not fit in those 2 slots.
Unless you want to pack 8 Rieslings it is not an issue. Most 750s fit in every slot.
It's pricey, but I have had it over a decade (in fact, my address tag is still an old Northwest one) and it can take a real beating.
The diameter of the slots may be larger in the 8-bottle model than they used to be, but most Champagne bottles were a very snug fit and Krug and Taittinger Comtes didn’t fit at all. Which is why I bought the "Decanter 5-Pack" model. It’s limited to 6 bottles, not 8, but 2 can be Champagne (one in the Champagne slot and one in the decanter slot).
https://winecruzer.com/5pack-decanter-layout.html

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