Are you looking for the best beer of the month club, but can't decide which beer subscription service to choose?
We've reviewed the most popular beer club subscriptions, beer club memberships, and beer box products you can buy. We've read their customer reviews. We've reviewed their business models. Now we're going to help you make your decision by cutting to the important details to help make buying from online microbrewed beer clubs easy.
The most popular beer box sellers
Lots of factors play into why a beer box mail service offers what they offer. When we reviewed the different beer boxes, business models. We found there are two supply chains and each offers a different beer delivery approach. Both seller groups offer craft beer clubs with award-winning beer selections.
Brewery Supplied Beer Boxes
- Breweries are specially licensed to brew and sell only their own beers. When you order beer boxes from breweries, expect a limited or seasonal selection. Breweries will sell a larger quantity box of only one beer or a pre-determined mixed beer box. It's also common to buy cases of the brewery's beer from their online store. Sometimes you can subscribe to receive their seasonal beer releases or join the club for a case of limited release, barrel-aged beers.
- The ability to buy is usually limited because the brewery's main focus is supplying tasting rooms, restaurants, bars, supermarkets, and finally online beer stores.
- Visit the brewery websites to find out if they sell online. Keep in mind a brewery will only ship to the states they are licensed in.
- Shipping alcohol into States where a brewery is not licensed is a huge risk and often grounds for losing their entire business. It's highly unlikely a brewery across the country will risk everything for a box of beer delivered to your door.
- It's common for breweries to only ship within their home State, because of legal and taxation laws.
- Many states limit the amount of beer a brewery can ship to any given address. Ask the brewery about beer delivery limitations in your State.
- If you're lucky to find a brewery that delivers in or to your State, make sure to research your and their state alcohol delivery laws.
- Some states don't allow breweries to sell online which is why they only utilize retailers.
- Some states completely prohibit the sale of online beer sales.
- Consider this. Direct from the brewery boxes offer the freshest beer because it comes directly from the source.
- Check out our Featured Brewery Beer Boxes. We work directly with local breweries to ship you their seasonal and limited-release beers!
Retailer Supplied Beer Boxes
- Unlike breweries, retailers have more freedom to offer specialized beer deliveries. Retailers buy beers directly from breweries or distribution companies and warehouse a wide selection of beers to box and ship to online buyers.
- Licensed alcohol retailers are those who make the best beer of the month clubs possible. You can find the beer of the month boxes, the brewery of the month boxes, surprise beer boxes, beer gift boxes, style-specific beer boxes, choose your exact beers and get them delivered, boxes with brewery beer swag, boxes of mixed beer styles, rare beer clubs, hop head beer clubs and so much more.
- Alcohol retailers still must follow state alcohol shipping and tax laws. Unfortunately, only a small group of states allow out-of-state retailers to import or export beer legally. This means, your favorite beer club might be shipping illegally. Consider the risks of shipping alcohol across state lines.
- Avoid annual, bi-annual, or quarterly upfront payments. Some retail beer box businesses sell prepaid plans. There are plenty of retailers who charge as you go and are happy to cancel recurring payments at any time.
- Consider the advertised beer selections. Beers from California can be shipped to Oregon through distribution companies. Beers from other states like Washington, Colorado, New York can be shipped to retailers in Oregon too. This makes for an attractive selection of beer boxes. However, consider this: From the time the beer is canned or bottled by the brewery, arrives at the retailers' warehouse, and finally on your doorstep - the beer is often not fresh.
- State-focused beer box services only feature and source from local breweries. This means you get the freshest beer delivered to you. This is what Oregon Beer Club is all about. We work directly with craft microbreweries. Order A Beer Delivery Here.
- Consider buying from beer delivery retailers that are located in the States with the most craft breweries. This means they likely source locally, often, and have relationships with breweries to send you amazing selections of craft beers.
The Most Popular Beer Box Business Models
When we reviewed the best beer box clubs, we found not all beer delivery services offer the same beer box business model. The beer delivery services can vary greatly because of location, beer availability, and the beer box business operation size.
We've put together the most popular beer box offerings you can buy. Ordered most popular to least in the list below.
- Surprise subscription and reoccurring delivery beer box memberships.
- Surprise beers of the month/brewery of the month beer boxes.
- Surprise one-time delivery beer club boxes for yourself or as a gift.
- Choose your style beer boxes.
- Choose your exact beers for delivery.
- Direct from brewery beer boxes.
Many online beer box services focus on expertly curated, beer of the month/brewery of the month beer drop (surprise box) offerings. This is because, while there are many breweries to source from, the logistics of sourcing, storing, sorting, shipping exactly what everyone wants is logistically expensive. The suppliers of beer boxes tend to choose to send customers an ever-changing, pre-determined selection of beers to send customers the freshest beers.
Consider all the possible beer box variations. Building an Amazon-like fulfillment center for beer ultimately results in beer club services to buy highly available beers to maintain availability for all customers. Nobody enjoys paying a premium for shipping beers they can buy at every corner local market. This is why the surprise beer box models are most popular.
Online beer box clubs embrace the idea of sending you new beers you've likely never tasted or known about. The ability to get seasonal, limited release, hard-to-find beers is what beer box clubs are all about.
Beer Shipping Is Expensive
Beer is heavy. Deliveries must be signed by an adult which adds cost. Special packaging is needed to reduce damaged beer. Nobody likes paying to ship, but it must be paid. Beer shipping fees often cost more than the beer itself.
We noticed many beer box clubs offer free shipping. However, the cost of shipping is included in the product price. These beer boxes tend to be more expensive.
Others beer box businesses split the shipping cost between the product and a flat shipping rate. They do this to advertise a lower product cost, the flat rate shipping covers the rest of the shipping fee.
Some beer delivery services don't hide the shipping cost and show the customer real-time rates at checkout. This often shows the customer how much shipping really is, and it's not pretty.
There is unfortunately no way to avoid shipping costs. In most cases, the shipping costs more than the beer being shipped. Beer shipping fees have become widely accepted. A small price to pay to get the beer you never had to show up at your doorstep.
Alcohol Shipping Laws
Each state has different laws for shipping alcohol in-state, between states, and internationally, as well as treating beer, spirits, and wine differently. To help break down each state’s alcohol shipping laws, here is a breakdown by state.
Note: The descriptions should not be considered a legal reference and should be used only for general informational purposes.
Oregon Beer Club is located in Oregon: Oregon is one of the ten largest markets for at-home alcohol delivery and has relaxed laws for alcohol by mail. Breweries and Retailers need to become compliant with mailing alcohol to consumers in Oregon, as well as be aware of local and city laws.
While we haven’t provided a list of the most popular beer box businesses. We hope all this information helps new first-time buyers understand the beer box mail industry.
Choosing the right beer box to buy is often based on preference. Consider buying from the most local source to receive fresh beer. Buy from businesses surrounded by the most breweries. Review their website to get a better sense of how unique the boxes of beers are. Don't be afraid to try multiple services since cancelation is often easy.
Consider ordering from Oregon Beer Club. We're Portland, Oregon-based, and ship surprise beer boxes with new beer or brewery-themed t-shirt in every box. We work directly with craft breweries to ship you limited, hard-to-find, seasonal, fresh beers. Our goal is to introduce you to Oregon's Craft Beer Industry.
Beer Box Subscription Discount Code
We have beer box coupon codes and promotions for first-time customers! Use the coupon code: SAVE5 at checkout to save 5% off your order. When you subscribe, you get an additional 5% off. The discount code combines for a total of 10% off your first subscription.
Learn all about our beer box! (Order Here).