The invasion of Ukraine by Russia in late February 2022 has forced Japan Post to stop offering all air bound shipping services for packages to many European countries.
Due to complications with flights following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, EMS and Airmail (e-packet) will be suspended to the following countries in Europe until further notice. Service to some countries was already suspended due to COVID19.
Malta, Romania, Germany, Finland, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Luxembourg
- can ship traced/insured with Yamato Transport/UPS or via Japan Post Parcel Post Surface (Sea) Mail for the above countries, with the exception of Portugal, which the courier does not ship to. Parcel Post Surface (Sea) Mail is the only option for Portugal.
- shipping has not been formally suspended to Ireland or Spain, but I expect there will be significant delays.
- shipping is currently completely unavailable for Russia.
If you are unsure about the status of your country, you can check Japan Post’s website here.
Here are some answers to some frequently asked questions:
What is Parcel Post Surface (Sea) Mail, is it safe?
Parcel Post Surface (Sea) Mail is shipping service offered by Japan Post that is transported by boat. It takes 2-3 months for delivery. It is traced, and for many countries it can be insured for a fee, making it a safe, but slow, shipping option. For some countries, there is no insurance option, which is a bit more risky.
What is Yamato Transport/UPS?
Yamato Transport is a private Japanese courier service that works with UPS (United Postal Service) to deliver packages abroad. UPS is a well established, major international shipping service with their own fleet of planes that has allowed them to operate without interruption during COVID19. It does not seem they plan to stop services for Europe at this time despite the events unfolding in Ukraine. Delivery time is comparable to EMS, but there several items that cannot be shipped with UPS that are usually OK for Japan Post. Please see the link at the beginning of this answer.
Will you still offer shopping for customers in Europe?
Yes, I will still be happy to shop for you as long as you accept one of the available shipping methods for your country. I am also willing to ship to package forwarding services in Japan (for example, TENSO). I cannot offer to hold your package, so if you request shopping please be prepared to use a shipping method that is available for your country.
You shipped a package to me with Japan Post just before the suspension started, and it seems my package is stuck in Japan. What will happen to it?
If the package cannot make it out on a flight, the package will eventually be returned to me. The shipping cost will be refunded, and you can put that cost towards reshipping your package with the courier or Surface Mail (any overpaid amount will of course be refunded in the case your new shipping method is cheaper than your old shipping method).
You can also see this post which is a general information post about COVID, and now invasion, related shipping issues.
Please contact me via e-mail if you have any questions and I will do my best to answer.
*Updated August 21, 2022