Why wine is cheaper on the Continent

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Bauduc July review1If you’re taking a holiday in France, Spain, Portugal or Italy this summer, you should be enjoying wine that seems refreshingly inexpensive. With the pound at over €1.40 compared to €1.20 a year ago or so, the Eurozone can be great value for Brits abroad. And what most people don’t realise is that duty on wine is so much lower on the Continent.

The impact is even more apparent in bars and restaurants: UK duty (£2.05 plus VAT for still wine, or £2.65 plus VAT for sparkling wine) is treated as part of the cost – like the wine itself – and an on-trade business has to make a good margin to survive.

With no duty in many EU countries, the cost price of the bottle is therefore much lower.