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Alcohol policy
In this article
In this article

Policy overview

We generally don't allow the sale of alcoholic beverages on the US eBay website (eBay.com), except for pre-approved sales of wine. At our discretion, we may permit sales of other types of alcohol by pre-approved sellers in designated categories. You can find more information about selling wine on eBay below. We don't allow the sale of collectible containers that contain alcohol. Members outside the US aren't allowed to sell alcohol to members residing in the US.

Make sure your listing follows our guidelines. If it doesn't, it may be removed, and you may be subject to a range of other actions, including restrictions of your buying and selling privileges and suspension of your account.

Keep in mind that the alcohol restrictions apply only to items for sale on the US eBay website (eBay.com). Alcohol may be sold on international eBay sites as permitted by local law. Please check the rules of each eBay website to find out more.
The US Postal Service (USPS) doesn't allow the shipment of intoxicating liquors containing 0.5% or more alcohol by content.
You can find this information in Section 42 of Publication 52, Hazardous, Restricted, and Perishable Mail from USPS.
Private carriers such as FedEx and UPS may allow these items to be shipped, but you should check their rules and regulations before offering their shipping services in your listing.

What are the guidelines?

Alcohol and alcohol kits

Allowed

Allowed

  • Beer/wine making kits

  • Foods with alcoholic ingredients and flavoring (such as liquor-filled chocolates, rum cake, and other items) as long as the item complies with our food policy

  • Hops, seeds for hops, and other raw materials to make beer or wine

Restricted

Restricted

  • Empty alcohol bottles and containers (images in the listing must show item is empty)

  • Non-alcoholic wines may be listed in the Wine category (by pre-approved sellers)

  • Wines listed in accordance with our policy

Not allowed

Not allowed

  • Alcohol products other than from pre-approved sellers

  • Liquor licenses

  • Non-alcoholic or de-alcoholized beer

  • Other alcohols listed in the Wine category

  • Wine listed outside of the approved Wine category

Alcohol-related collectibles

We don't allow any container with alcohol, even if it may be considered collectible. Pre-approved wine sellers can still list wine in the appropriate category. At our discretion, we may permit sales of other types of alcohol by pre-approved sellers in designated categories.

Allowed

Allowed

Alcohol-related memorabilia, including empty wine, liquor, and beer containers.

Not allowed

Not allowed

  • Collectible alcohol containers if they still contain any alcoholic content.

  • Open containers of alcohol.

Selling wine on eBay

Wine

Generally, wine can't be sold on eBay. However, we do allow some of our members to list wine in the Wine category as long as they follow federal, state, local, and other applicable laws and regulations. These members must carry the required license to sell and ship wine, and they have completed our registration process to list wines on our website. This policy is applicable to those approved sellers and buyers who transact with them. To become a licensed seller of wine on eBay, start the registration process by uploading a copy of your alcohol license here. You also need to enter your eBay user ID in the comments section of the document upload page.

Approved wine sellers

Sellers must include the following information within each item description:

  • Link to our alcohol policy page: http://pages.ebay.com/help/policies/alcohol.html

  • A lawful shipping policy that specifies the states to which you can ship wine (if any), and any restrictions on such shipments (for example, whether the wine can be shipped directly to consumers)

  • State-by-state eligibility requirements for potential buyers, indicating whether buyers in particular states would be required to receive wine at a particular location in the seller's state, instead of having it shipped directly.

  • The buyer's age requirement.

  • Language which lets buyers know that the seller has been pre-approved by eBay prior to listing wine.

Wine buyers

In order to purchase wine on eBay from pre-approved wine sellers, buyers must meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 21 years old

  • If the recipient of the wine isn't the buyer, the buyer must make sure that the recipient is at least 21 years old

  • Make sure that the transaction follows all interstate commerce laws, including all laws around shipping and fulfillment

Buyers, by bidding on or purchasing these items, warrant and represent that they are aware of and are in compliance with their own state laws and regulations.

State laws

Every state in the US has different laws for the sale of wine, especially when dealing with wine sales across state borders. Members should fully research and understand federal and state laws before listing wine. If you want to sell wine, you should also take the time to review state shipping restrictions that are in the Requirements for wine-related transactions on eBay section below. The Wine Institute is a great place to find more information on the laws for selling wine.

Requirements for wine-related transactions on eBay

Be sure to meet all the following terms and conditions when buying or selling wine on eBay. These terms and conditions may change over time. It is your responsibility to visit these pages to see if and how it may have changed, so that you can remain compliant.

  1. Limitation of liability: Both buyer and seller expressly acknowledge and agree that eBay shall not be liable for any special, incidental or consequential damages or lost profits (however arising, including negligence) resulting from or in connection with the sale of property on the eBay site.

  2. Representations and warranties:

    • Each seller represents and warrants that:

      • The seller of the wine has the right, power, and authority to sell the wine.

      • The owner of the wine owns all necessary and required licenses to lawfully carry out wine-related transactions on our site, and ship the item to its purchaser.

      • The recipient (and buyer if different from the recipient) has proven he or she is 21 years of age or older prior to delivery.

      • The transaction will comply with all interstate commerce laws, including all laws around shipping and fulfillment.

    • Each buyer represents and warrants that:

      • The buyer of the wine is at least 21 years old.

      • The recipient of the wine is at least 21 years old.

      • The transaction will comply with all interstate commerce laws, including all laws around shipping and fulfillment.

  3. Indemnification: The seller is solely responsible for compliance with all laws associated with the sale of wine. The seller indemnifies eBay of all responsibility associated with this sale. It is therefore the seller's sole discretion of the completion of the transaction based on its ability to assure that the transaction is in compliance with all laws associated with the sale of alcohol.

  4. Shipping: Certain local, state, and federal laws and regulations govern and limit a seller's ability to sell and ship wine and other alcohol. As a seller, you are solely responsible to consult with legal and/or other experts to determine which laws and regulations may impact your activities and to fully abide by those laws and regulations. Since each state has its own regulations governing the shipment of wine, seller must clearly note which states it is able to ship to in the item description.

  5. Age: Wine shipped by seller requires the recipient to be in possession of photo identification confirming they are 21 years of age or older. Buyer, if different from recipient, must also show proof of age.

Why does eBay have this policy?

We want to make sure buyers and sellers understand and follow all laws and regulations on the sale of alcohol. Certain alcoholic products are prohibited by law and could harm members so those items can't be sold on eBay.

Contact Customer Service
You can contact Customer Service to report a listing you think violates this policy. Go to that listing, and then click the Report item link on the right side of the page.

We'll review your report and take appropriate action.
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