Japan Luggage Express
Japan Luggage Express Ltd.

Shipping Time from Japan to Europe

European continent

Shipping Time from Japan to Europe

How long shipping Japan to Europe takes

If you are shipping cargo from Japan to Europe, or if you are in Europe and are expecting a shipment using the services of an international sea freight forwarding company, one of the things you are probably most concerned about is the shipping time.

There are regular consolidation services by ship available from Japan to major ports in Europe which include Southampton/Felixstowe (UK), Le Havre (France), Hamburg (Germany), Rotterdam (Netherlands), Barcelona (Spain), Gothenburg (Sweden) and Milan* (Italy) and Kopel (Slovenia).

*Destination terminal to Italy is Milan via port of Genova.

To these destinations in Europe, some consolidators in Japan offer weekly services i.e. there is normally one consolidation every week.

The port-to-port shipping time from Japan to major ports in Europe:

Destination Country  Transit Time
Southampton UK 40 days
Le Havre France 32 days
Hamburg Germany 32 days
Rotterdam Netherlands 32 days
Barcelona Spain 30 days
Gothenburg Sweden 45 days


They also offer multi-modal transportation services via such hub ports to various parts of Europe. Such destinations countries include: Switzerland, Hungary, Romania, Poland, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Belgium, Austria, Portugal, Ireland and Russia.

Destination Country Transit time
Stockholm Sweden 51 days
Copenhagen Denmark 54 days
Helsinki Finland 54 days
Oslo Norway 54 days
Basel Switzerland 63 days
Bucharest Romania 63 days
Budapest Hungary 63 days
Warsaw Poland 56 days
Milan Italy 35 days
Dublin Ireland 65 days
Moscow Russia 45-60 days
Leixoes Portugal 49 days

Unless you are shipping a large amount of goods, you will be using the consolidation services and shipping your cargo as LCL (Less than Container Load). Even if you are shipping a full container (FCL= Full Container Load), the transit time to Europe will be about the same.

If the port of origin is other than Tokyo/Yokohama such as Nagoya, Kobe or Osaka, the transit time can be one or two days shorter or longer.

Container ships carrying  consolidation containers may sail directly from Japan to European ports, however, the containers may make it on to a connecting vessel at some hub port in Asia such as Singapore.  Also for some European destination where Japanese consolidators do not have enough cargo to make consolidations, LCL shipments may be transported to Singapore first and then they are consolidated with other cargo to the same destination.

Container ships make port calls at ports in South East and central Asia, Middle East and other ports in Europe before arriving at the destination ports in Europe.

When considering the total transit time required for shipping from Japan to  European destinations, it is important to consider the time it takes for customs clearance and loading shipments onto container etc. as well as the actual port-to-port shipping time.

The points below should also be considered.

  1. LCL shipments (Consolidation Cargo) must be loaded into containers for consolidation and the container must be sealed a few days before the actual sailing date of the main vessel.
  2. Shipments must be cleared through Japanese customs for export permit a few good days before the deadline for loading into containers.
  3. Normally there is one ship / one consolidation is available each week with the exception of holiday seasons.
  4. The delivery of the goods to the bonded warehouse must be completed a few days before the customs clearance and the shipping documents such as commercial invoice and the packing list must be ready by then.

container vessel

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