Japan Post To Stop Parcels to US


The Japan Post Office announced November 12 that from November 17 it would indefinitely stop accepting mail parcels to the United States weighing more than 453 grams. The Post Office has at this time given no indication of how long this suspension will last only saying that it is “for the time being.” This suspension includes all regular international airmail parcels, as well as EMS. The Japan Post Office (JPO) has cut Japan off from the US entirely, at least as far as airmail parcels over a pound in weight go. The reason the JPO gives for this  action is that following attempts to send explosives through air cargo from Yemen to the US, American security measures for air cargo have become increasingly severe. America and Guam are included in this provision, raising the strong possibility that Christmas and year end parcels will not be able to be sent from Japan to the US,  which is  likely to cause massive confusion.

According to the Asahi Shinbun, parcels to the US from Japan now account for over 15% of international mail, and approximately 200,000 parcels are sent monthly from Japan to the US. Private consumers will be affected by this ban, however individuals and businesses with JPO commercial accounts will not be affected. As of this writing, no other post services has announced similar measures, and the United States Post Office has not reported plans to  limit the weight or shipment of air mail parcels to Japan. At the beginning of November when Greece had several bombs sent through the mail, airmail was stopped in Greece for two days. No other major postal service in the world has ever announced an “indefinite” ban on airmail packages.

Since privatization the JPO has been the object of a political tug of war between those who want to entirely or partially end its privatization and those who support continued privatization. The management at top levels of the JPO has drawn  censure across the political spectrum, with the problems of the Japan Post’s “Yu-pack” deliver system drawing particularly harsh criticism. Foreign users have complained about the proliferation of required documentation for mail and packages to and from foreign countries that did not previously exist and question their necessity. Banning all airmail packages over 453 grams to the US from November 17 will cause wide spread inconvenience and resentment, particularly among smaller business and individuals.

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25 Responses to Japan Post To Stop Parcels to US

  1. Luciana on 11/13/2010 at 10:11 pm

    I am glad I mailed a parcel to my daughter on Nov.11, just a short time before the ban…..
    Before mailing it I asked her to check with the PO there,and she answered that it was working as usual!!!

  2. Kevin on 11/16/2010 at 4:03 pm

    I am a foreigner with a commercial account with Japan Post. If you are in Japan and are in a rush to mail something to the US, please contact me and maybe I can help (unless you are mailing bombs).

    • Ashley on 11/17/2010 at 10:05 pm

      I am living in Fukushima, where are you? I would LOVE a connection to a commercial account!

    • mark on 11/18/2010 at 8:25 am

      Hi Kevin,

      How do you obtain a commercial account?


    • Giulio on 11/25/2010 at 2:55 pm

      Hello Kevin, my name is Giulio, I live in Osaka.
      I`m really in hurry to send a 4kg parcel to the Usa…
      please help me!
      Thank you

    • Peggy on 01/19/2011 at 1:32 pm

      Hey, thanks for the info on mailing stuff thru regular mail to Japan. Do you know if restrictions have been lifted at all?? (writing now in January) My son is in Japan for a year, EAP, and really needs to mail his laptop home to me, but so far the private mail companies seem scandalously expensive, Any hints?

      Thanks so much

      • Eli on 01/20/2011 at 10:58 pm

        Peggy, the restrictions were lifted two or three weeks after they were put in place. There was a follow-up article on this website about it. Everything is back to normal.

  3. Abram on 11/16/2010 at 5:24 pm

    Words can’t describe how angry I am, you’re telling me I can’t ship to the states!?!?!? I want to punch someone in the face right now.

  4. [...] from Japan? Shipping to the States? Read this… Japan Post has enacted new restrictions that ban the mailing of packages that weigh over 453 grams (16 ounces / one pound) to the US:The [...]

  5. William on 11/16/2010 at 7:28 pm

    Abram, you can still mail to the states… You just have to hack it up into segments less than 453g each. I wonder if anyone has ever tried to mail a 440g or 445g explosive before. That’s what I don’t understand about weight limits.

  6. [...] Japan Post to Stop Parcels to the US [...]

  7. [...] more information on the ban and the logic behind it, there is an article posted at http://www.Majorixnews.com that explains things pretty well. If you’re too lazy to click, the gist of it is that because [...]

  8. GoodsFromJapan on 11/16/2010 at 11:24 pm

    A number of companies like are own have corporate JPO accounts and can still ship EMS or airmail to the US. I do feel for ordinary people after this harsh measure.

  9. JB on 11/17/2010 at 2:47 am

    What a boneheaded thing to do. Right in time for Christmas too. Couldn’t they just do a mandatory search before the parcels are shipped? Sure it’s a little invasive but it’s better than just banning it completely.

  10. dj on 11/17/2010 at 2:58 am

    this report is really ammbiguous!

    It states that no parcels will be accepted and then says that airmail parcels will not be accepted but what about ground and sea shipped parcels? Or do we accept one of the abiguous implications that either all parcels are being refused or only airmail parcels?

    Please help us to understand the specifics!

  11. Me on 11/17/2010 at 7:39 am

    A typical knee-jerk reaction that has no basis, apart from “just in case”. And why the weight limit – that makes no sense at all. Such a shame for families here who planned to mail Christmas presents home to the USA.

  12. Joan on 11/17/2010 at 8:05 am

    dj, the post office only sends by air to the States – they discontinued sending by ship a while ago.

  13. Scott on 11/17/2010 at 5:06 pm

    Joan, the US stopped sea mail a while ago. Japan still offers it, and it is not included in the ban. Also, private carriers such as FedEx have no such ban and will deliver parcels over one pound (453 gm.).

  14. HLJ is Still Shipping Your Toys. :) on 11/18/2010 at 2:11 am

    [...] Recently news dropped that Japan was halting all shipments out of Japan and that made a few of us worried since we all love us some import toys. BUT… Site Sponsor Hobbylink Japan remains strong and apparently unaffected by the “laws” of The Rising Sun Nation. [...]

  15. Dwight on 11/23/2010 at 6:43 am

    Not just Japan, this has now gone global!

    Yes, it’s official, the US Department of Homeland Security and the TSA have lost their collective minds. They now see “Terrorist Plots” everywhere they look, including International Postal mail from trusted friendly nations. Their knee-jerk reaction was to block all international mail over 16 ounces.

    (Can you smell 1920 isolationist policies at work?)

    The TSA has been given authority to REFUSE and ‘Return-to-Sender’, any mail in bulk which they determine might pose a risk to US airline passengers, without cause, suspicion, or inspection.

    Japan-post, along with other parts of Europe and Asia have responded by limiting package deliveries to the USA until this flood of returning “Refused-Mail” slows down. Japan Post has stated that “Many Thousands” of personal and commercial packages have been returned from the USA to Japan, without any attempts at delivery, inspection, or explanation.

  16. Dwayne on 11/29/2010 at 12:56 pm

    Im happy to send packages to the US for individuals. One of my clients is an export company. I’m pretty sure they have a commercial account with the POST OFFICE.

  17. Japan Post Office Lifts Ban | Majirox News on 11/30/2010 at 11:31 am

    [...] Dwayne on Japan Post To Stop Parcels to USGiulio on Japan Post To Stop Parcels to USDwight on Japan Post To Stop Parcels to USmark on Japan [...]

  18. Dee on 01/20/2011 at 3:25 pm

    I’m in Australia. When I tried to send a package to the US the lady informed me there was a $9 surcharge on anything over 500g (luckily my package was under, so it didn’t get hit). Basically she informed me that the US customs had tightened security and Australia Post had added a surcharge.

    I didn’t understand why until today. Basically, Aus Post was losing money from the thousands of ‘return to sender’ packages the US was losing. Instead of banning things over 500g, like Japan, they instead added a surcharge.

    Basically, this is the US’s fault, not Japan or Australia. It’s your customs that seem to have gone haywire. What I don’t understand is why Americans aren’t upset about this, and/or didn’t even know.

  19. Eli on 01/20/2011 at 11:01 pm

    Everyone. The restrictions were lifted a few weeks after they were put in place. Everything returned to normal quite a while ago

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