Wine Transport While Flying question.

Asking for a friend of mine.

I am going to be in New Orleans at the end of the month, meeting a friend of mine from Amsterdam. She likes good red wine, and was considering having us both bring some and maybe swapping bottles that we don’t finish while there. However, I am concerned about the wine being hurt during transport to/from MSY.

My flight to MSY would involve having a checked bag sit on the tarmac in HRL for an hour or so at temps probably in the low 80’s, flown to HOU, sit on the tarmac at HOU for most of two hours at or above 90 degrees, flown to MSY, and transferred to baggage claim before finally getting to me. I am sure this is not good for the wine, but how bad is it? Will the wine still be good if we drink it in the following few days? I know that red wine starts to break down at 77 degrees and above, but I haven’t found any more detailed info beyond that.

Same question for champagne; I think that can handle high temps better than reds, but again I have no clear data on this.

Any insights you can give would be greatly appreciated!


I suggested a styro shipper with an ice insert. Any other ideas?

77? Maybe 79.

Don’t know where that 77 number came from, but I don’t buy into that at all. Whatever’s happening, it’s a continuum, I don’t believe there is some cliff a wine can fall off when it reaches some particular temperature.

What I’d do is pack in styro, that should protect the bottles for many hours, even in hot weather. An ice pack won’t hurt, but you’d need several to make much of a difference. But go ahead and do that, chill the bottles as well before packing them up, then stop worrying, it’ll be fine :slight_smile:


When travelling with wine I use the VinGarde Valise. Expensive, but sturdy. With the chiller inserts, it works fantastic in hot weather. Pre-pandemic I used it to constantly bring wine from NY to Brazil and with the inserts the bottles would arrive intact and cool to the touch in the middle of summer.

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Which summer? :wink:

I’ve done both with the same results. Also several mid Brazilian summer Sao Paulo to Rio flights. High cost for a one time use though.

Same here. I use the VinGardeValise 12 bottle cases. I bought some new ones during flash sales for 50% off last year when travel shut down and they were trying to move inventory. They threw in a set of chiller sheets which work very well. You can buy them on Amazon or from the same reseller at their company website -

I would have posted links but they were not appearing when I submitted. Not certain what I am doing wrong. Copied and pasted and they didn’t stick.

It showed up when I was viewing the post on mobile. If you have an ad block it can sometimes block Amazon links.

That’s all correct, and your wines will he just fine.

Thanks. I do have an ad block and I did not know that.

Styro shipper with ice inserts would work just fine for the duration of the trip involved. Honestly even without the ice it would probably be fine.

Agree, a cheap styrofoam shipper and several ice packs will do it.

If you have a VinGuard Valise, that works great too. Expensive for 1 trip (the half-off lockdown sale appears to be over) but you might use it repeatedly.

I agree with using something well insulated like a styrofoam shipper. I would also pre-chill the wine in a refrigerator and not bring anything aged. Ice packs would be nice, but they often don’t fit in those shippers and really aren’t necessary with the pre-chill and good insulation.

You can just fill plastic water bottles and freeze them and stick them in the slots you’re not using.

Agree cheap styro is durable, disposable, and will keep the wine cool just fine. Have used it many times. Any restaurants picked out? August is quite nice and allows for corkage I believe. If you are going later this month, despite your friends preference for red wines, I would think light! NOLA in late August/ early September is bloody hot. Like hot enough to have an outdoor sauna. Forget doing anything outside between the hours of 11 and 4. Personally I would drink champagne and Riesling, they are both pretty good with oysters…

Thanks everyone. I forwarded the link to the thread.

+1 for the VinGardeValise. Just took 10 bottles to Maui and everything was in good condition to drink. I bought one of the glasses inserts so we had our own wine glasses with the wine. The chiller packs worked real well.

Multiple times travelled with 6-12 bottles of wine in styrofoam shippers checked like luggage. If I’m not flying direct, I’ll put in some type of cooling pack or a bottle filled with water and frozen.
Never had a problem.
I purchased a folding Samsonite trolley to help get the box through the airport. Dispose of the box and styro at the destination and bring the trolley back inside a suitcase.

My vingardevalise broke twice on my second trip with it. First the strap on the way there, broke connecting Sao Paulo to Rio. Second leaving Rio to Sao Paulo, the handle got dented so bad it wont come out. The wine was fine though.

The vingardvalise strap is terrible. The strap on my first bag broke on the first use. I haven’t found it that useful. I’ve done away with and just use one of those spandex luggage covers. Has worked quite well for me.

Baggage handlers in Brazil are on a whole different level. Luggage seems to deteriorate at a whole other rate when travelling there. Hope you enjoyed your time there otherwise