The below information is a brief summary of customs regulations when you plan your international shipping to Japan. Always double check with your local embassy or consulate to make sure you have all the information you need before you make your move. Contact the nearest Japanese Embassy.

When you plan your international shipping to Japan, The following documents are required for customs clearance

  • Passport for every member of the family (clear copy of all the pages which have Japanese entry stamps) and copy of page with photograph
  • Residence and Working Visa (valid for over one year)
  • Original and two copies Declaration for Unaccompanied Baggage stating number of pieces in each shipment (Form C 5360-2 for non-Japanese and Form 5360 for Japanese).
    • Forms are obtained on the airplane travelling to Japan or at the Airport in Japan upon arrival.
    • Two originals required
    • Can be used to declare any other shipments arriving within six months.
    • If this form is not presented at time of arrival, Customer must prepare a “Letter of Apology” to Customs office which will delay clearance and Customer may have to pay import duty
  • Inventory (detailed in English or Japanese)
    • PBO – “packed by owner” and miscellaneous are NOT ACCEPTABLE!
    • Air shipments require a detailed list with carton numbers and items in each carton, along with the total number of pieces
  • Keys to locked trunks/suitcases
  • Delivery address and telephone number

When shipping goods overseas to Japan, The following items customs guidelines will need to be met:

  • Used household goods and personal effects are duty-free provided the goods have been in owner’s possession and utilization for at least one full year
  • Most shipments inspected
  • Shipment must arrive within six months of Customer

When shipping goods overseas to Japan, The following items are dutiable and/or restricted:

  • Alcohol, tobacco, rice and video cassettes
    • Items must be stowed for easy access in the container
    • Large quantities require separate clearance as a commercial shipment
    • Must be clearly noted on inventory (including the weight of the rice)
    • Detailed list of video cassette tapes
  • New items (less than a year old), especially furniture
    • It is recommended that new items be re-packed
    • Invoices required
  • Electrical appliances

The following items may be imported duty free in limited quantities:

  • Three (3) bottles (around 760cc) alcoholic beverages
  • 400 pieces of cigarettes per adult
  • 100 pieces of cigars (if there is no other tobacco)
  • 500 grams pipe tobacco
  • If there are more than 2 kinds of tobacco, up to 500 grams in total weight
  • 2 ounces perfume

When shipping goods overseas to Japan, The following items are prohibited from entry into the country:

  • Rice, flower seeds/bulbs, flour, straw and straw items
  • Fresh fruit, meat products and vegetables (pineapples, green bananas excluded)
  • Items requiring Quarantine Certificate are rooted plants, furs, straw products, shells, meats and stuffed animals
  • Wildlife products from protected and endangered species
  • Narcotics and drugs (including over the counter cold medicines containing Pseudoephedrine)
  • Counterfeit or altered currency
  • Pornographic or politically sensitive material such as books, pictures or sculptures
  • Firearms and other lethal weapons particularly swords, spears, blowpipes, daggers, bolos, bows and arrows if the blade is more than 15 centimeters in length
    • Importation and/or possession of any type of weapon is strictly prohibited and will result in fines
  • If above items are included in the shipment, they will either be shipped back to origin or abandoned; additional costs for either option will be charged to Customer.

When shipping Motor Vehicles overseas to Japan, The following documents and regulations will apply:

  • Duty-free for foreigners establishing residence
  • Must not be sold for two years after date of Import Permit
  • Must meet import requirements
  • Documents required:
    • Original Passport
    • Alien Registration Card
    • Form C 5360-2 or 5360
    • Original Registration
    • Engine & Chassis Number
    • Purchase receipt
    • Proforma invoice
    • Drivers License (copy)
    • Car Manual
    • Documents stating vehicle has been in owner’s use and possession abroad
    • Affidavit stating that you will not sell your auto while in Japan
  • NOTE: Foreign cars must be modified to meet Japanese emission and safety regulations; charges are very high and for customer’s account
  • If the above requirements are not met, import duty will be assessed at 5% of the depreciated assessed market value.

 Moving Pets to Japan: The following documents must be presented for the importation of pets:

  • Dogs and cats:
    • Health and Resident Certificate from Quarantine Office at origin endorsed by USDA/APHIS/VS required (certificate issued by private veterinarians not acceptable)
  • Original Rabies Certificate issued by the pets veterinarian – must be issued within past 6 months but more than 1 month old
  • Quarantine at least 15 days required for dogs
  • Pets must be shipped aboard direct non-stop flights, from origin city where certificate was issued to destination
  • Pets not meeting these requirements will be returned to origin (at owner’s expense)

The regulations are subject to change without notice. Our company is not liable for any costs, damage, delays, or other detrimental events resulting from non-compliance.