Can I import about 400 btls of wine as sample?

I know we need to obtain our import license first, but we are not sure our wine sales would be good or not. We are thinking to import about 400 bottles of 750ml wine from France to Japan. We will use this wine for promotion purpose, and we are not going to sell it. Do you think we should get the import license to receive the sample wine?

I’ve never heard from our clients before to import wine without the license, especially for business related. I know there are some consumers who import wine from overseas and just drink it at home, but not for promotion purpose. The customs office allows consumers to import wine if it’s for personal use, but you are saying this is for promotion.


If I were you I would obtain the import or retail license to import 400 bottles of wine because you are saying you will use it for promotion (business purpose). I assume you will let many people to taste the wine, and so this sample won’t be consumed inside your company.


Please remember, dealing with alcoholic beverages means Taxation office wants to see the transaction clearly.


All of our clients prepare the Japanese back labels first, submit the document to the government, then stick it on the bottles in order to go through the import customs. Also, they all pay the duties to import wine. If your company will start wine import business, the first step is to obtain the license. Without it, I don’t recommend anyone to import wine for business related activities.


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