Questions about our Insider Deals? We've got all the answers and then some. Check out our frequently asked questions below!
Over the past couple years thousands of people have bought our Insider Deals and we've shipped millions of dollars worth of wine but that doesn't mean you don't have questions about how the program works! In order to answer these the best we've can we've broken this FAQ into 3 parts, click the links below to jump to each section or take a few minutes and read it all.
Help I'm Locked Out!
What's the deal with these deals? How are they different than your reviews?
Our reviews are at the heart of what we do, whether they be wines from Trader Joe's, Costco, Aldi or wines that are just generally available. That said, the biggest "complaint" we here is that people can't find the wines we review. After all your local stores only carry a tiny fraction of the wine that is made each year, maybe a few thousand different bottles if you're lucky, which is well under 10% of what's out there.
In addition, due to the terrible 3 tier system in the U.S. most of what you see on your local store shelves come from the big 3 distributors. There's very little chance to find the thousands and thousands of excellent wines made from small, family owned wineries.
The reason for these deals then is to unleash the other 90% of the market to our readers!
Is this a wine club?
Absolutely not. Each deal is independent, there is no commitment at all.
Who picks which wines you offer?
I (Jon) handpick every one of our deals.
Are your Insider Deals rated any differently than your normal reviews?
Absolutely not, both use our proprietary rating system that uses both a Taste Rating and a Cost Rating to get an overall score. If anything we might be even a little stricter in how we review these Insider Deals knowing that our name gets put on them!
Do you secretly work for one of the big wine companies?
No, we are still 100% independent just as we have always been.
Do you make money off these deals?
Yes, of course, this does take a lot of work and we do need to make a living. We use this money to pay for the site and make it ad-free. There's nothing we hate more than a site that is overloaded with ads.
What does it mean when you say the deals are "Winery Direct".
Just as it sounds, when you buy one of our deals you are actually buying directly from the winery, not from us!
What are the advantages of Winery Direct deals?
There are many! Here are just a few:
- Support wineries directly! We can offer wines from any winery. Many of the wineries we work with are small, family-owned wineries that have very little or even no retail distribution. The structure of our deals also cuts out the traditional middlemen – distributors and retailers, who typically each take huge cuts of profit. This means these deals are not only good for you but also good for the winery!
- Low Prices! By cutting out the middlemen and structuring the deals in a flash sale style that allows us to consolidate orders for shipping, we are able to offer some absolutely huge discounts on many wines that are rarely available for less than SRP. To help us do this efficiently we've partnered with Wine Country Connect (WCC)
- More Shipping States! Wine retailers are legally only able to ship to about 15 states. (Many disregard this at their own risk.) Wineries, on the other hand, are legally able to ship to about 46 states if they are properly licensed. That means using a Winery Direct model opens up about 30 additional states for shipping.
Why are your deals so short (1-2 days)?
See above, this is all part of the model that allows us to offer as low of prices as possible. By consolidating all the orders and shipping them together we are not only to able to offer huge discounts but also extremely reasonable shipping (just $7 most of the year, slightly more in the summer to expedite shipping to ensure your wine stays safe in heat).
When do you publish new deals?
Currently new deals go live three times a week: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The best way to be notified is to subscribe to our emails.
Are all of your deals published on the website?
No, the discounts are so big on some of our deals we can't even publish them to the website as the winery doesn't want a "history" of that extremely low price! The only way to get these is to sign up for our emails.
I loved the wine I bought, how can I get more?
Questions about Shipping
I've never purchased wine online, how does shipping work?
We've got all the answers to that question in our article How To Buy Wine Online.
How much does shipping cost?
Most of the year shipping is just $6.99 via UPS ground. During summer, shipping goes up to $9.99 but packages also go via 2-day in styrofoam to minimize heat exposure. See more on our summer shipping.
What shipper do you use?
UPS. You can sign up for the UPS Mychoice service to see and manage incoming packages.
Do I need to sign for my delivery?
Yes, regardless of the shipper, federal laws require you to sign for alcohol deliveries. See our article How To Buy Wine Online for more info.
What are my options if I won't be home for delivery?
Your options would be to either have the wine shipped to a friend or your workplace or to use the UPS Mychoice service to find the options for scheduling deliveries or holding packages in your area.
Why does it take several days for the wine to ship out?
Due to the winery direct structure our deals do take a bit longer to ship than a traditional retailer that has the wine sitting in their own warehouse. Depending on the time of year, it can take anywhere from 5-10 days for the wine to ship. The reason is that once the deal closes, our partner collects the wines from the winery and consolidates all the orders in their warehouse. Most of the year (especially during the summer) they also only ship wines out Monday through Wednesday to avoid wine sitting in transit over the weekend.
How do I know that my wine has shipped?
Once UPS has your wine you will receive an email with your tracking info. That email comes from "RWS-Wine Deal Maker" firstname.lastname@example.org, not the jon@reversewinesnob email that the deal notification comes from so you may want to check your spam folder if you don't see it
Is it safe to have my wine shipped during summer?
Maybe, depending on your location. Read our article on Is It Ok To Ship Wine in the Summer that includes info on what we do to protect your wine.
Why was my wine shipped in styrofoam?
In an effort to protect your wine during the summer heat, we will ship in styrofoam during the hottest months of the summer (as well as send everything 2-day.) The rest of the year we ship in cardboard exclusively. If the deal you are buying states it will go via 2-day then it will also be shipped in styrofoam.
Which states do you ship to?
It can vary by deal. Each individual deal will list the states allowed which will be could all available states or just a subset of the 46.
My state allows shipping from wineries but it's not listed on a deal, what gives?
The states for each deal are dependent on the individual licenses of the offering winery. Not all wineries, especially the smaller ones, are licensed in every state they can be. (Some states have very expensive or burdensome licensing requirements.) If you don't see your state listed on a deal, don't give up hope! There's a good chance the next deal could include it.
Do you ship to Alaska and Hawaii?
Currently no, as we have not determined a way to not lose our shirt on shipping costs. We are looking at ways to charge a more appropriate amount for shipping to these states.
Do you ship to Canada or anywhere else outside the US?
Questions about Ordering
Why do orders go through a different site?
Our ordering site winedealmaker.com is run by our partner Wine Country Connect and is connected to their logistics system which makes things easy for us and our winery partners.
How do I update the number of orders in my cart?
When you are on the ordering site, you can adjust the quantity in your order (up or down) by using the "Click To Update Cart" link at the top right of the screen.
If I've signed up for your emails does that mean I have an ordering account?
No, if you'd like an ordering account you'll need to create one (see below).
If I created a sign in to save my favorites on your site, does that mean I have an ordering account?
Unfortunately no, these accounts are not linked at this time. If you'd like an ordering account you'll need to create one (see below).
How do I create an account?
The easiest way is to just click the "Create Account" button during checkout which will prompt you to create a password. Shipping info will then be retained for future orders and you'll also be able to view your order history.
Do I need an account to order?
No, no account necessary, just enter your shipment and payment info and click submit.
I can't enter my birthdate!
Each browser treats date fields a little differently but generally you should be able to just enter the date directly. If you get the month/year pop up you can click on the current date at the top, for example "October 2022" to bring up a dial to quickly get to the right year and month instead of pushing the back button a million times.
Do you save my credit card info?
Is your ordering system secure?
Yes, of course. You can click the lock button by the url in your browser to verify.
Help, I'm locked out or can't login! Login problems and resetting passwords
If you have previously ordered and set up an account when doing so, then this happens when you enter your password incorrectly a number of times. You should be able to get back into the site after a few minutes. At that point if you go to this link you can reset your password.
Once you fill out that form you should get an email to reset your password. That email will come from "RWS-Wine Deal Maker" email@example.com, not this email so you may want to check your spam folder if you don't see it. If that doesn't work, we can also reset your password for you, just let me know!
If you haven't ordered before (or didn't click the create account button when you did) then you'll need to set up an account during checkout. The account for ordering is different from signing up for our emails or getting our printable lists as those sign-ups don't require a password. You can click the "Create Account" box during checkout to do so, just don't try to login first.
Alternatively, you can always also order without logging in...just enter your info at checkout (don't check the "create account" box) and your order should go through just fine even if it's the same email you've used to create an account.
The most common reason for getting locked out is that you are trying to log into an account that doesn't exist! Typically this is because people assume they have an account from a previous order; however, most of the time those orders were done through guest checkout (i.e. the "Create an Account" button was not clicked.)
How can I find my order history?
What charge will show on my credit card?
Your credit charge will reflect our logistics partner on these deals and will shows as "WCC- Winery Sale" or similar.
Other questions? We're just an email away!
Are you a winery who wants to offer your wine to our audience? Contact us!