Moving from Japan/how to pack and shipping list

What do I include on my Packing List? (Document E)
  • Box number, Description of the goods, Quantity and Value must all be indicated.
  • The declared values on your packing list are for shipping (transporting), customs clearance and insurance purposes. (Shipments need to be cleared through customs both in Japan and in the country of destination.)
  • We recommend that you type this into a computer instead of writing it out, possibly using an application like Microsoft Excel or Word.
  • Please write in block letters and black ball-point pen, if you handwrite your list.
  • Please make it as detailed as possible. Every item must be listed. "5 T-shirts and 2 skirts" is better than "7 items of clothing". Generally speaking, it is unlikely that customs will worry about not declaring a handkerchief or a pair of socks. So, do not try to be meticulous.
  • o Very good descriptions: printer, rice cooker, jackets, Panasonic 32 inch TV
    o Acceptable: stationery, clothing ,TV set, children toys, kitchen utensils, chinaware, books
    o No good: Miscellaneous, souvenirs/"omiyage", gifts, personal effects, foodstuff, household goods, electric appliance (these descriptions are much too general and they can mean just about anything),
  • If you declare some small items which are almost impossible to count, specifically photos, letters and documents, you may want to simply write "1 packet" or "1 set" for Quantity. For example, "one packet (or one album) of photos" (But DO NOT write "1 packet of Photos and Documents"; they must be listed separately.)
  • Some people are good at making detailed lists and they even indicate the title of each book they are shipping. This will be an appeal to the customs office that the shipper is honest and making every effort to declare articles. But simply stating "books" will also be fine.
  • Values must be declared for all items including presents (gifts), documents and photos etc. Some people may say that they have no values. The values for such items need to be declared / indicated for customs statistics. NVD(No value declared), NCV(NO commercial value) or $0, 0yen is not acceptable. Blank is not acceptable. If you list some items which you think have no value, please declare a low value of $1 or 1yen. If you write, NVD , Y0 or the alike, your shipment cannot be shipped from Japan.
  • When declaring values, do not use terms such as "maybe", "approximately" or the like. Check your calculations once again before faxing. Miscalculation will result in customs and shipping delay. Many people make calculation mistakes (even when they use Microsoft WORDS) and we would like to avoid delay.
  • The declared values for personal effects shipments: Value that are accepted by both the customs office and the insurance company, is "used value" or so-called "fair market value", i.e. the prices the goods would go for today on a fair market basis. Replacement values or purchase price are accepted only for items that have not been used yet or newly purchased items.
  • Carriers or JLE do not refund the charges related to shipping even when there is loss or damage of an shipment. Considering the fact that there is no refund of freight/shipping charges, customs clearance charges or the alike in the even of loss or damage, slightly higher value may be declared by adding some part of moving/freight charges.
  • Personal computers with a value of ?100,000 per unit over are NOT accepted. (If a value exceeding ?100,000 per unit is declared on the packing list, NO compensation will be made by the insurance company, Japan Luggage Express or any other organization such as carrier, including when the insurance premium is paid based on the declared value.)
  • Do not write any messages to Japan Luggage Express (JLE) on your packing list. Packing lists are the documents for customs clearance.
How to Pack
  • Please write a 'Case Mark' on the side and top of each box. Your case mark should consist of A. your name, B. the name of destination CFS*/port and C. the carton (bag) number.

  • Write in capitals directly onto the side and top of each box with a magic marker or large permanent pen OR write/print in large, bold font on pieces of paper and firmly attach them to the top and side of each box.
  • Do not write the full destination shipping address in this case mark
  • Do not use any alphabets, letters or symbols that cannot be typed with a conventional typewriter for English and no Japanese characters)
  • Do not write the name of the actual city you will be moving to. Write the name of the destination port or CFS* (*CFS = Container Freight Station).
  • Make a packing list while you are packing each carton. It will be more accurate.
  • Please be very careful in numbering the packages especially if you are shipping a large number. Every once in a while we come across a situation where a client has two packages with the same number or where there is no particular number used. This will cause confusion and delays and in the worst case unnecessary additional charge may incur and may result in delay in shipping also. Similarly, if you have some boxes and some bags (say a ski bag), simply continue the numbering as if the bag were another box. Finally, avoid Box No.1 of 12 etc. Just number them Box No.1, Box No. 2, etc.
  • Packing is a matter of common sense. Do not ship anything that is not completely packed, especially large items such as pieces of furniture.
  • We sell bubble wrap and cardboard boxes for international shipping and moving if you need some.
  • Please use sturdy cardboard boxes for shipping. Suitcases are acceptable. Boxes will be piled up and the boxes must be sturdy enough to hold the weight of the boxes piled on them.
  • Plastic containers and hard cases for musical instruments can be shipped but please make sure all packages have case marks. (You may want to use stickers or tags if it is not possible to write case mark directly on the suitcases.) If shipping duffle bags, they should be packed in cardboard boxes.   
  • Hint - Electric appliance shops might have large cardboard boxes that can be used for shipping TVs, small tansus, computers etc. If you need a bike box, go to a bicycle shop and ask.
  • Computers exceeding value of ?100,000 per unit are not accepted in terms of insurance.
  • Snowboards must be packed in bags but may need further packing for protection.
  • Suitcases, guitar cases (hard cases) and golf bags can be shipped without further packing, however, it would be necessary to wrap them with vinyl sheet, bubblewrap etc. A soft guitar case would need to be packed in a very sturdy box and would still be at risk.
  • Avoid wooden boxes, wooden crates, or wooden pallets for packing. Wooden packing materials can cause quarantine problems when shipping to countries such as USA, Canada, EU countries, and Australia/New Zealand unless you use fumigated/treated wood which meets the quarantine and customs standards of such countries. A certificate for fumigation is required for shipping to US and Canada. Alternatively, you may use plywood, Plywood(veneer) is acceptable and this would perhaps be the easiest and best way in terms of avoiding quarantine problems in shipping.
  • All fragile items need to be wrapped in shock-absorbing materials ideally the thickness of 6 cm. Put shock-absorbing materials on the bottom and top of the box containing fragile items.
  • If you are shipping dishes, chinaware, glasses, we recommend what we call "double-packaging", where you place such items in smaller boxes initially with fillers (this refers to shock-absorbing material such as plastic chips and bubble wraps. They can also be such common things as soft clothing such as T-shirts or towels) and then put the entire box into a box of larger size. There also should be some more fillers inside the larger box for protection.
  • We do not stick "fragile" stickers on the packages at the time of Pick-up or afterwards. Do this yourself. Please have your boxes "ready to ship" at the time of Pick-up or encounter delays.
  • Japan Luggage Express does not do further packing or palletizing/shrink-wrapping of your packages unless agreed beforehand and additional charges paid. They will be transported exactly the way they are collected from your residence.
  • If shipping a framed picture/painting, put some adhesive tape on the surface of the glass (some tape which can be peeled off easily later on when you unpack your packages) so that the glass will stay in place even if it gets broken into peaces or gets cracked. Then put some more paper between the picture/painting and the glass so that any broken glass will not damage the picture/painting which perhaps be the most important part of the goods which cannot be replaced as easily as glass or frames.
  • You must ensure that any sharp objects are packed away from all edges/sides of carton boxes. If they should puncture the side or the top of a carton box, you or handling staff could risk injury and other contents could be damaged.
  • If you have an item which is too large to be put in a cardboard box or in proper wrapping, it is likely to be refused at the airport. Ask us to professionally wrap/crate/palletize it for you.
  • Professional crating/palletizing is available at an additional charge.
  • Please do not ship(pack) coins, credit cards, precious stones, jewelry or the like in your boxes
  • Avoid liquids entirely. They may leak and ruin your goods.
The above are only suggestions and means there is still a possibility of damage if packed this way.

Moving from Japan