Postal Services in Japan

Information on the postal system in Japan with details on post boxes, sending letters, parcels and registered mail and mail forwarding services...

Post offices in Japan are open from 09:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday. They are normally closed at weekends. However, larger post offices may stay open until 19:00 on weekdays and open for restricted times at weekends.

  • For information about opening hours: Click here
  • For contact information for Japan Post: Click here

Sending mail and parcels

Stamps are available over the counter or at vending machines in post offices and from most convenience stores (konbini). Stamps can be bought individually or in sheets or books.

  • To check mailing rates for international post: Click here
  • For information about buying postage stamps: Click here (in Japanese)

Different rates apply for sending domestic or international mail. There are four different classes for standard domestic mail in Japan, depending on the size of the item of mail to be sent, and its purpose.

  • For more information about the different classes for domestic mail: Click here

There are a number of different services available to send mail overseas, and different rates apply depending on the service chosen.

  • For information about using international mail: Click here
  • For information about rates and delivery times for international mail: Click here

Mail boxes

Mail boxes are red with the T-symbol on them. Most have collection times displayed on them.

Track and trace

A track and trace service is available for domestic and international mail. The service offers a number of options for tracking mail, including registered mail, overnight mail, insured mail, and express mail.

  • For more information about this service: Click here

Express Mail Service (EMS)

The express mail service is a popular, fast and easy way to send tracked mail quickly to a number of different countries. It is necessary to complete the relevant EMS form, which is available from post offices. EMS mail must be sent from a post office.

  • For information about how to fill out the EMS form: Click here
  • For details about how to use this service and to check rates: Click here

Sending parcels

Japan has a domestic parcel service called Yu-Pack, which offers a number of services for sending parcels across Japan, including picking up heavy luggage from domestic airports.

  • For more information about this service: Click here

There are a number of different options for sending international parcels and different rates apply depending on the number and weight of parcels and the service used.

  • For more details: Click here
  • For information about sending small international packets: Click here

Receiving parcels

Parcels are delivered direct to the customer. If no one is at home, a note is posted through the door advising the recipient of the delivery. Parcels are then kept at the delivery post office for 15 days. It is also possible to request a redelivery.

Where there is a customs charge to be paid, a note stating the payment due is sent to the recipient. The parcel is kept for up to one month.

Mail forwarding

Japan Post provides a mail forwarding service which can be arranged at the post office or online. To apply for the service, fill in a mail forwarding application form (tenso todoke) form at any post office, indicating the date of the move.

Alternatively the service can be requested online, although the service is only available in Japanese.

Other services

Japan Post also offers services such as savings and insurance schemes.