Delivery in 3 to 5 business days: At home for $12 or for free in-store on orders of $75+.

Importing alcoholic beverages

In Quebec, only the SAQ is legally authorized to import alcoholic beverages. This means that when bringing alcoholic beverages into Quebec, you must always contact the SAQ (as described below), even if they are gifts, donations, ones you’ve inherited, or souvenirs from a trip.

If you are 18 or older and a Quebec resident, the SAQ offers you ways of acquiring alcoholic beverages that are not available through its regular distribution network.

If you are interested in acquiring such a product, email the Private Order Department at infocommandes.privees@saq.qc.ca, specifying the product name, the quantities desired and the supplier’s name (if known). We will check whether the product is currently represented in Quebec by a promotional agency.

If the product is represented by a promotional agency

We will give you the agency’s contact information so you can order the product through them. Note that only full cases may be ordered. The agency will submit your order to us and the products will be delivered to a designated SAQ store. You pay for the products when you pick them up. Please note that the agency fee is not included in the SAQ price and could be billed separately to you by the agency.

If the product is not represented by a promotional agency

Depending on the quantities involved, you have two options:

Personal importation (45 litres and less)

**Personal importation is exclusively for products for personal consumption. Resale of products obtained through personal importation is prohibited by law.**

Do you want to import products with a total volume of 45 litres or less? Then you are responsible for ordering the products and having them shipped to Quebec.

  • Procedure

    Step 1

    Order and pay for the products from the foreign supplier.

    Step 2

    If the supplier hasn’t already done so, arrange and pay for the shipping. The order must be in your name and the delivery address must be your personal address. You will have to deal with a private freight carrier, as Canada Post systematically refuses to accept beverage alcohol products for individuals and will either return such products to the sender or have them destroyed.

    Step 3

    When the products have arrived in Quebec, the carrier will contact you. Here is what you (or the customs broker you hire) must do to take delivery of your products.

    1. Obtain an electronic authorization from the SAQ.

      The fee for this authorization, which you pay to the SAQ, includes the markup (which is based on the type and value of the imported products), the specific tax on alcoholic beverages, the goods and services tax (GST) and the Quebec sales tax (QST).

      **The SAQ cannot guarantee the quality of products acquired through personal importation.**

      For more information about this step, please contact the SAQ’s Customs Department:
      Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5563
      Email: importationtiers@saq.qc.ca

    2. When claiming your products, you will need to provide the electronic authorization as well as the following documents:
    • the commercial or pro forma invoice listing the number of bottles, product descriptions, container sizes (volume) and value for duty;
    • the shipping document for the means of transportation used, either an air bill for air freight, a bill of lading for overseas shipments or a cargo manifest for land shipments.

    This is also when you pay the duties and value-added taxes charged by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). Only then will the products clear customs.

    For more information about this step, please contact the Canada Boarder Services Agency :
    Telephone: 514 633-7700

    Taxes :

    Type

    Markup

    Specific tax

    GST

    QST

    Wine

    Variable, depending on the value of the product

    $1.40/litre

    5%

    9,975%

    Spirit

    Variable, depending on the value of the product

    $1.40/litre

    5%

    9,975%

    Beer

    Variable, depending on the value of the product

    $0.63/litre

    5%

    9,975%

Private orders

Do you want to import one or more cases of a product?

Then you will need to submit a private order to the SAQ and meet all the related conditions.

Private Order Policy (PDF - 55 KB)

  • Conditions
    • Minimum purchase of $150 per product (supplier’s selling price)
    • Products must be ordered by the case
    • $100 non-refundable fee per request if the minimum purchase threshold is not reached
    • You pay a deposit equal to 80% of the supplier’s selling price
    • Shipment is handled by the SAQ for products from certain countries
    • Estimated Times for Product Availability by country
    • Products are guaranteed against defect for one year
    • Non-defective products cannot be returned
  • Procedure

    Step 1

    Contact the supplier and obtain the following information:

    • Business address and pick-up address
    • Product name
    • Number of bottles/containers per case
    • Bottle/container size
    • Percentage alcohol by volume
    • Supplier’s price per case
    • Currency

    Step 2

    Contact the Pricing Administration Department to obtain the estimated sales price for the product.

    Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5196
    Email: prixderevient@saq.qc.ca

    Step 3

    Contact the Private Order Department to request access to the private order website.

    Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5903
    Email: infocommandes.privees@saq.qc.ca

    Step 4

    Fill out the form on the website and pay a deposit equal to 80% of the supplier’s sale price.

    Step 5

    The SAQ processes the private order request and sends a purchase order to the supplier.

    Step 6

    The supplier confirms the SAQ’s purchase order.

    Step 7

    The SAQ emails you a notice of supplier confirmation to inform you that the order has been accepted.

    Step 8

    The SAQ arranges shipping for products originating in countries where it already has existing shipping networks. For areas not served by the SAQ, the supplier must arrange and pay for shipment from its warehouse to the SAQ’s warehouses.

    Step 9

    Once the products have been received and found to be in order by the SAQ, you receive a notice informing you that they have been released. You must then contact the SAQ to arrange for delivery.

    Step 10

    The SAQ delivers the products to the designated SAQ store of your choice.

    Step 11

    You pick up and pay for your products at the store. The deposit paid in step 4 will be deducted from your invoice.

    For more information, contact the SAQ Private Order Department:

    Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5903
    Email: infocommandes.privees@saq.qc.ca

Bringing a wine collection back to Quebec

You’ve been living abroad and have put together a wine collection that you wouldn’t give up for anything in the world? Don’t worry! You can bring back to Quebec the contents of a wine cellar patiently built up over your years abroad.

You can bring a wine collection with you to Quebec if you are:

  • an immigrant;
  • a temporary resident;
  • a Canadian citizen who has been living abroad for more than one year.
  • Conditions

    To bring an alcoholic beverage collection into the country, you must have owned the alcoholic beverages in question for at least three months prior to your departure for Canada. Any beverage purchased less than three months before your departure cannot be considered part of the collection.

    The alcoholic beverages must:

    • be imported no more than one year after your arrival in Canada;
    • accompany your personal effects;
    • arrive as a single shipment;
    • not constitute the larger share of your personal effects in either value or quantity.
  • Quantities allowed
    • Only one beverage collection may be brought into Canada per family.
    • For Canadian citizens, the collection is limited to 180 litres of alcoholic beverages (beer, wine and spirits) for each full year spent aboard, up to a maximum of 540 litres.
    • For immigrants, the collection is limited to 540 litres.
    • For temporary residents, the collection is limited to 90 litres (beer, wine and spirits) for each year of authorized stay, provided the beverages have been acquired at least three months prior to departure for Canada.
    • Beverages not counted as part of the collection and considered as overage are subject to the Société des alcools du Québec’s other importation rules.
  • Procedure

    If you wish to bring an alcoholic beverage collection with you to Quebec, inquire in advance at the SAQ about the applicable procedures and conditions. When your personal effects arrive in Quebec, Canada Customs will require the SAQ’s authorization in order to release the beverages.

    To obtain the importation authorization, you will have to provide:

    • an attestation of your stay aboard, an immigration certificate or a residence permit, as applicable;
    • a shipping document for your personal effects;
    • a list of the alcoholic beverages making up the collection.

    The SAQ collects a reduced markup on beverages that are part of a collection. It also collects the specific tax, the goods and services tax (GST) and the Quebec sales tax (QST).

    Taxes :

    Type

    Markup

    Specific tax

    GST

    QST

    Wine

    $3/litre

    $1.40/litre

    5%

    9.975%

    Spirit

    $5/litre

    $1.40/litre

    5%

    9.975%

    Beer

    $3/litre

    $0.63/litre

    5%

    9.975%

    In other words, the SAQ will collect $3.79 on a 750 ml bottle of wine and $5.52 on a 750 ml bottle of spirits.

    Federal duties and taxes are assessed on top of the markup and taxes paid to the Société des alcools du Québec and apply in full to all alcoholic beverages. These duties and taxes are paid to the Government of Canada when you clear your beverages through customs.

    Alcoholic beverages in excess of the quantities listed above are not considered part of the collection and may be treated differently by the SAQ. That is why a detailed list must be provided. Invoices or proof of purchase may be required in such cases.

  • For more information

    Dou you have questions? Contact us:

    Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5563
    Email: importationtiers@saq.qc.ca

    For more information about Government of Canada taxes and duties, contact the Canada Border Services Agency at 1 800 959-2036.

Travel abroad

When returning to Quebec from a trip abroad, you can bring limited amounts of alcoholic beverages back with you.

  • Quantities allowed

    After being abroad for less than 48 hours

    Beverage alcohol is not eligible for a personal exemption.

    However, you can bring back up to 9 litres of beverage alcohol. The Canada Border Services Agency will collect the federal taxes and duties, the provincial taxes and a markup based on the type and value of the products.

    After being abroad for 48 hours or longer

    You are eligible for a personal exemption of up to 1.5 litres of wine, 1.14 litres of spirits or twenty-four 355 ml cans/bottles of beer without having to pay duties, taxes or markup.

    In addition to quantity allowed under your personal exemption, you can bring back up to 9 litres of beverage alcohol. The Canada Border Services Agency will collect the federal taxes and duties, the provincial taxes and a markup based on the type and value of the products.

    On your return from abroad, if you are bringing back more than 9 litres of beverage alcohol (in addition to the quantity allowed under your personal exemption), please refer to the Obtaining Authorization to Bring Alcoholic Beverages into Quebec section for the steps to follow.

    For more information, please contact the Canada Border Services Agency at 1 800 959-2036.

    With you when entering Canada

    Personal exemption

    Taxes, duties and markup collected at the border (SAQ permit not required)

    SAQ authorization required (provincial taxes and markup)*

    Less than 48 hours

    None

    Up to 9 litres

    Between 9.1 and 45 litres

    48 hours or longer

    1.5 litres of wine or 1.14 litres of spirits, or 24 cans/bottles of beer

    Up to 9 litres (excluding the exempted products)

    Between 9.1 and 45 litres

    Shipped by carrier

    Personal exemption

    SAQ authorization required (provincial taxes and markup)*

    At all times

    None

    0.1 to 45 litres

    *Federal fees and charges are due when the goods clear customs.

  • For more information

    Do you have questions? Contact us:

    Telephone: 514 254-6000, ext. 5563
    Email: importationtiers@saq.qc.ca

    Once the SAQ has authorized the importation, only parcels shipped using a private carrier can be delivered to you. Canada Post systematically refuses to import alcoholic beverages for private individuals and any such parcels will be either returned to the sender or destroyed.