The Most—and Least—Expensive Countries to Buy Wine In

You won’t be surprised at all by which country came out as the most expensive.

Wine pouring into glass

Taveesak Srisomthavil / Shutterstock

There are a lot of factors that will help you whittle down a vacation destination: hotel cost, airfare availability, seasonality, and the actual desire to see a spot in real life, among many other things. But for wine enthusiasts, the cost of a good bottle may also play into that plan. On that very specific note, Compare My Jet — a database that helps those seeking private jet service find the best deal — put together a study digging into the most and least expensive countries to buy a bottle of wine.

The site compared 36 countries under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) umbrella to first determine the largest producers and consumers of wine. It was also able to determine, from the regions researched, what the most popular variety of wine was across the board. And while red wine was found the be the most popular type of wine in 16 countries (or at least the most googled, according to the data collected), sparkling wine was also a popular search topic for eight countries. And fun fact: rosé was the most-searched wine by only one country (we see you, New Zealand).

If you and this research have a love for red wine in common, the data revealed Italy as the best spot for drinking high-quality red wine. This was determined by digging into the countries that have won the most awards for each category of wine — and to back up that first fact, Italy has taken home six “Best in Show” awards for this category. White wine fans will find the best sips in France (they’ve taken home five “Best in Show” awards), while rosé fans should consider Spain, the only country to have won an award for the category.

And now, some information to bookmark for your future travels:

The Least Expensive Places to Buy Wine

Portugal comes in at the top of this list, with an average cost of $4.30 per bottle. Portugal also drinks the highest amount of wine per capita (nearly 12 gallons per 1,000 people). You’ll find the next least expensive wine in Hungary ($4.81), followed by Chile ($5.13). From there, Slovakia ($5.37) and Germany ($6.02) round out the list. 

The Most Expensive Places to Buy Wine

Topping the list is Iceland, which really isn’t a surprise if you consider the need to import literally every bottle. The average cost of a bottle of wine is over $18, followed by Norway, where the average cost is only slightly lower at $17.60. We take a trip out of the Nordic region to South Korea for the next-expensive bottle average ($15.74), with the United States ($15.18) and Switzerland ($13.63) close behind.

The moral of the story? Good wine can be found in a lot of different spots around the world, but there are some regions to focus on if you plan on making vino a big part of your travel plans. If the latter is what you’re looking for, Italy and Portugal are calling.

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