We hope that this article will answer all your questions in case you would like to send a package to Japan, either in the context of your professional activity or as a private individual. Here we will mainly discuss Express Parcel shipments with carriers such as FedEx, UPS, TNT, DHL, Aramex. Some parts also concern the shipment of parcels with the Post Office.
How to send a parcel to Japan? Basic information
First of all, you should know that the Japanese Post is renowned for its reliability and seriousness. It ranks third in the world in this respect according to the International Postal Union's 2018 ranking. Having said that, there's no need to be in a hurry, as sending parcels to Japan from Switzerland with Swiss Post can take a while, several weeks.
With an express carrier, this parcel delivery time is reduced to 72 hours.
How to send a parcel to Japan? Customs documents
When you send a package to Japan, especially with carriers such as FedEx, UPS, TNT, DHL or Aramex, it is very important to remember to include certain documents with your shipment, such as :
- The packing slip (bill of lading or Airway bill). This document, which you will have previously filled in by hand (or which will be filled in automatically if you send your package via Expedismart.ch), will be scanned by the courier when he comes to pick up your package.
- A proforma invoice or a commercial invoice. If you sell the goods you are shipping, it will be a commercial invoice, otherwise a proforma invoice. It must be completed in triplicate, preferably signed. It allows the Japanese customs to know what your package contains without necessarily having to open it and also contains information such as: the name and surname of the recipient, his address, phone number, the value of the goods, etc. Don't worry if you have never filled it out before, when you make your reservation on Expedismart, we will accompany you to fill it out correctly. It is important to fill it out as accurately and precisely as possible, otherwise the package may be blocked at customs. If you want to know more about how to write a proforma or commercial invoice, please read our dedicated article.
If you want to send an express courier to Japan, it's even easier. The only document needed will be the packing slip, no need for a proforma invoice. Moreover, with courier shipments, there is no risk of being blocked at customs for inspection. Be careful, mail means document, do not try to send goods in an envelope and pass it off as documents, it could be subject to a thorough check and the delivery time could be extended by as much as two days.
How to send a parcel to Japan? The VAT
With a shipment from Expedismart, if you wish, you can also take care of all the customs charges, including VAT. For this, you have to make us the request and we will be able to activate this service once the account is created.
How to send a parcel to Japan? Smart advice
If you are planning to move to Japan, you can bring all your personal belongings duty-free six months after your move. Please note that this only applies to used products.
As in most countries where the average holiday is low, Japan has a fairly large number of public holidays. Therefore, when you send an express package to this country, make sure that the delivery does not take place during one of them. For your convenience, here is a list of the main ones:
January 1st: New Year's Day
Second Monday in January: Adult Day
23 February: National Day of Japan
March 21: Equinox Day
April 29: Midori no hi (Emperor's Day)
3 May: Constitution Day
4 May: Green Day
5 May: Kodomo no hi (Children's Day)
3rd Monday of July: Umi ni hi (Day of the Sea)
August 11: Yama ni hi (Mountain Day)
3rd Monday September: Keiro no hi Respect for the Elderly Festival
September 23rd: Autumn Equinox
2nd Monday of October: Taiiku no hi (Health and Sport Day)
3 November: Bunka no hi (Culture Day)
November 23: Kinro Kansha no hi (Labor Day)
How do I send a package to Japan? Precious goods
It is possible to send valuable goods or even currency to Japan. Please note that for an amount of more than 1 million Yen or about 9'000 CHF (8'600 Euros), a special declaration must be made to the Japanese customs. This also applies to precious metals weighing more than 1kg.
If you wish to send precious goods to Japan from Switzerland with express carriers such as DHL, FedEx or UPS, you should be aware that some also impose limits. If you want to know more about this, please contact us beforehand. We can ask the carriers for more information.
We also advise you to insure the goods. Although express carriers are reliable, it is always safer and more reassuring to take out transport insurance for large amounts. On Expedismart, it can be reserved in one click and its cost is 1% of the total declared value with a minimum of 10 francs.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)