Free Booze Cruises

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French wine shops Calais Vins and Olivier Vins have collaborated with P&O Ferries to offer British citizens complimentary ferry trips to Calais for wine purchases. This partnership allows customers who spend €300 or more at these stores to receive a free return day trip from Dover to Calais, with a three-day return trip available for purchases of €700 or more.

Calais Vins has reported a notable increase in British customers despite the changes to alcohol import limits following Brexit. Previously, UK residents could bring back unlimited amounts of alcohol for personal use from the continent. However, post-Brexit regulations now restrict each adult to a maximum of 24 bottles of still wine + 12 bottles of fortified or sparkling wine.

Calais Vins has seen a 57% increase in British customers between 2022 and 2023, which they attribute to rising alcohol prices in the UK rather than the changes in duty-free allowances. The shops also offer a VAT reclaim system. However, it’s worth noting that the majority of the offered wines are French and some, particularly Champagne, might still be found cheaper in UK supermarkets due to their much larger purchasing power.