Moving Out of Japan: Moving/Delivery Services

Hi, this is D, I’m back. I know, it’s been such a long while! I kinda feel like G and I have been busily entertaining each other, we totally missed out on updating this space. But the honest truth is really the simple fact that after months of living in Japan, I kinda ran out of new stuff to write about, haha. Living in Japan is really peaceful on a daily basis.

From the title, I think you’d have guessed it. G didn’t update here and I’m going to go ahead and assume that I have the right to announce this but we are moving out of Japan! Actually, to be more accurate, I’ve already moved out of Japan, lol. I’m actually writing this from Singapore and G will be leaving Japan in the next few days. We will be reunited in Taiwan next week.

Why I am writing about moving options is because we had such a hard time trying to find affordable or reasonably priced service for moving our belongings overseas. Naturally, if you’ve lived in a country for a few years or more, you’d know that you’d have accumulated quite a bit of things, from books to mementos and other personal belongings. Or, like me, you may also need to move your precious pots/pans (they’re expensive and amazing) and pillow/quilt (they have my smell, I need them). If you’re just moving home, great, you can go ahead and dump a lot of stuff because you don’t need to buy them again if you’re heading home but if you’re like G and I, where we are moving to another new place in another country, you don’t really want to be throwing away useful stuff that will cost you quite a bit to replace e.g. bedding items, kitchen appliances etc. This simply translates to having quite a bit of stuff to move and ship over, with ‘quite a bit’ meaning way too many stuff to fit into 2 – 3 luggages for you to manually bring over when you fly to the new country. Hence, you need to deliver/ship them.

For G and I, we sold away tons of things, including his guitar, our piles of books, and I sold away most of my bulky sweater and winter coats. We’d not have sold them if not to cut down on our load. But no matter how much we sold and discarded, we were still stuck with… approximately 5 big boxes (~30-50cm length cardboard box) and 2 luggages of belongings that we needed to ship over.

Based on my research, let me give you the options:

  1. Yamato Logistics aka Kuroneko
    This company will be the most affordable option if you are moving more than 5 boxes of stuff. I was mainly looking at their Tanshin Plan, which will allow you to ship 5 big boxes and 4 small boxes of belongings at 70,000 yen via sea shipping (this price is for Taiwan), which takes around 2 weeks if I am not wrong. If you can pack and plan in advance, this is probably the best option because they also provide the packing materials. They have other courses if you need to ship more boxes, which I think will be even more value for money.

    Another option if you only have one or two boxes is to go by their Ryugaku TAQBIN, which is just shipping for a few boxes of stuff. It costs 34,000 yen for each box up to 25kg (to taiwan) so it is actually really expensive IMO. If you are shipping just one or two  boxes, I recommend option no. 2 below.

    They have a really good website in English to give you all the info you need here. They also have English speaking staff to assist you via email for enquiries, which is great.

  2. Japan Post – EMS
    This is not the cheapest option but I’d say it’s the easiest, most convenient, speediest and value for money option. Be it shipping a few boxes or many boxes, they go by weight, so that is pretty fair to the consumer. Via EMS, to ship our 5 big boxes and 2 luggages, we paid approximately 100,000 yen and it’ll be delivered in 2 days. The bonus is that they actually provide free pick up service so although JP Post isn’t a moving company, we did not have to worry about lugging all our stuff to the post office to get them delivered.

    To give you an estimate of shipping a few boxes, it’ll cost 26,500 yen for a 30kg box (to taiwan), which is their max weight limit per box. If you compare it with Yamato’s price for a 25kg box (34,000 yen), you’d realise how much more affordable this is, especially when this is the price for EMS delivery i.e. 2 weeks compared to 3 days.

    Due to the urgency to settle this move within one week, we did not explore their AirMail and Surface Mail option, which takes a longer time to deliver but at a much lower rate. Perhaps you could give it a try because I think it’s a much better savings option! See my screengrab below for price comparison:

    G contacted them and received the EMS forms to be filled up on the same day and they came to pick up the stuff 3 days later. It was really fuss free and simple. I guess it helped that G speaks Japanese? I’m not sure if you’d be able to assess this service easily if you only speak English but I’m sure you can find some bilingual friends to help you out, anyway.

    You can visit their website here to check out the options by JP Post. To check the rates, you can visit this link.

I really hope this info can save someone the hassle of trying to source for a moving company when they are leaving Japan. Actually, G contacted some other moving company and they actually quoted him 170,000 yen to move the stuff he verbally described, to which he said is too much and they lowered the quote to 120,000 yen, with the condition of him agreeing to take their service on the day itself. *strange* I also contacted Crown Logistics but they only handle a minimum or 28 boxes, so that’s out of the picture.

I think G will probably cover a post about what to do when you are moving out of Japan as well as how to get rid of stuff, especially bulky ones, when you are moving out of Japan because he had such a hard time handling those stuff, haha. I guess that’d be a very apt topic to cover, as that’s definitely something he never had to deal with before in his 9 over years in Japan. =x

And I hope all of you will still be interested if we write about Taiwan!! >.<

That’s all for now, till then~ 😀
D.

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