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3 Ways to Shop Online from Japan and Buy Japanese Gear – Carryology

How to Buy Japanese-Solely Goods

Japan has lengthy been a prime innovator in the carry world, releasing high-quality merchandise that discover new dimensions of performance and design. Unfortunately for shoppers outdoors of Japan, getting your palms on Japan’s most coveted gear and clothing is usually a troublesome process.

Many Japanese retailers — Bape, Amazon Japan, Beams, simply to identify a number of — don’t ship overseas and, even if they do, their process is complicated, expensive, or both. And that’s assuming they even settle for international bank cards and you have been in a position to navigate a poorly translated Kanji-to-English web site and discover the product you want to buy.

Nevertheless, there are ways to buy and ship gear abroad from Japan. On this article we’ll go over three primary methods:

Then, scroll on to get a full record of really helpful Japanese brands to shop from, and one of the simplest ways to buy from every.

So, when you’ve got your eye on a Japan-exclusive launch of a brand new backpack, or a highly-technical sweatshirt by a small Tokyo-based designer, right here’s how to take your gear from digital wishlist to bodily mailbox.

Using a Proxy Service to Ship Gadgets from Japan

A proxy service, which acts as a middleman between you and Japanese retailers, is the perfect and easiest method to purchase gadgets from Japan and ship them internationally. Part mail-forwarding service, and part marketplace, these websites will order gadgets in your behalf, ship them to a warehouse in Japan, and then handle the process of delivery them to you — wherever you’re on the earth.

The way it works

While there are a number of proxy providers for ordering gadgets from Japan, ZenMarket is among the largest and most trusted. For this text, I examined ordering a number of gadgets from ZenMarket, which ended up being far much less painful than I anticipated. Here’s the way it worked:

Discover your item

Find the item you need to purchase, either on the retailer’s website or by means of a bigger marketplace, like Zozo or Amazon.

Add it to your cart

To do this on ZenMarket, you’ll enter the URL of the product you want to purchase within the search bar, choose the dimensions and colour, and hit “add to shopping cart”.

how-to-use-zenmarket-to-buy-japanese-gear---checkout pagejapanese sling bag in shop window

Add funds to your account

After you have all the gadgets you need to purchase in your purchasing cart, add funds to your account. You are able to do this by way of PayPal or with a credit card.


After including funds, you’ll be able to finally click on “purchase”. After that, you’ll see your gadgets’ standing change to “awaiting buying”. You’ll then wait about 1-2 business days on your gadgets to be bought, then another week or so (relying on merchant) for them to arrive at ZenMarket’s warehouse.

Zenmarket buy screen

Approve delivery technique

As soon as they have your gadgets, you’ll then have the opportunity to choose your delivery technique. While there are numerous choices, EMS is the usual technique and every proxy service has a full guide to enable you to navigate your options. They often ship within 2 days of receiving your merchandise.

Delivery to Australia? Be careful: you’ll be charged a 10% customs charge for any buy underneath $1,00zero AUD. Sadly, this can be a payment managed by the Australian authorities, and you’ll encounter it on all proxy providers, not just ZenMarket.

Receive your merchandise!

Finally, the final and most enjoyable step: receiving your buy! While delivery occasions range, you need to receive your item inside 1-2 weeks.

Advantages of using a proxy service

There are three major advantages to using a proxy service when ordering from Japan. First, these websites are in English and so much simpler to navigate than local marketplaces and retailers.

Second, these providers care for every thing — putting the order with an area retailer, delivery, parcel insurance, clearing customs, and making certain that your order ends up in your doorstep.

And eventually, they’re arrange to obtain worldwide payments, either immediately by way of your credit card or by way of PayPal.

Downsides to using a proxy service

Nevertheless, this service isn’t low cost and you’ll encounter quite a lot of fees on prime of your commonplace delivery prices. For example, once I went by way of the process of purchasing two luggage from Japan and delivery to Australia, I acquired the following charges:

  • Delivery inside Japan: 200 JPY ($1.80 USD) per item. 400 JPY ($3.60 USD) complete.
  • ZenMarket payment: 300 JPY ($2.70 USD) per merchandise. 600 JPY ($5.40 USD) complete.
  • Delivery value to Australia: 4,814 JPY ($43 USD) for the entire parcel.
  • 10% customs tax for Australia: 1,598 JPY ($14)

In addition to the price of the bag, I ended up paying a further 7,412 JPY or $66 USD for my order.

PRO TIP: To cut down in your general value per item, wait till you could have a few gadgets in your cart earlier than delivery them to your self, since delivery costs are calculated per package deal, not per merchandise.

Greatest proxy providers to use

There are a selection of proxy providers on the market. Whereas we went with ZenMarket (which supposedly has the fastest delivery) for this text, DEJAPAN is sweet for those who don’t need to deposit funds prematurely. Depending on what you’re ordering, DEJAPAN and From Japan may additionally end up being more reasonably priced in the long run — especially should you’re solely ordering from one seller or brand.

  • ZenMarket was launched in 2014 and has shortly turn into the most effective and most versatile proxy service for delivery gadgets from Japan. By means of it, you’ll be able to order from nearly any Japanese store or market.
  • From Japan, like ZenMarket, is flexible and permits you to purchase gadgets from just about any web site. They cost fees per seller/store, not per item, however cost a further charge for consolidating gadgets throughout a number of sellers. They’re greatest for those who’re ordering a number of gadgets from a single store/vendor.
  • Buyee is Zozo’s dedicated proxy service nevertheless it limits you to the merchandise obtainable on their worldwide website — which doesn’t embrace every part of their Japan catalogue.
  • Buy Sensible Japan companions with Tokyu Palms, certainly one of Japan’s largest retailers, to assist worldwide clients order and ship gadgets from this market.
  • DEJAPAN, like ZenMarket and From Japan, permits you to buy and ship gadgets across a lot of totally different retailers. They’ve a better search performance on their platform, and are stated to be some of the reasonably priced and responsive proxy providers on the market. Also this can be a service accredited by Beams Japan (certainly one of our favourite retailers!).
  • Parcl shouldn’t be technically a proxy service but a mail-forwarding service. With Parcl, you’re answerable for ordering the product by way of the store’s web site, then delivery to a warehouse tackle offered by Parcl. Then, they’ll ahead the package deal internationally. They ship to and from 80+ nations.

For a more detailed comparability, I’d advocate taking a look at this breakdown written by DEJAPAN.

Delivery Instantly Via Online Marketplaces

When you’ll more than likely find yourself using a proxy service to purchase items from Japan, there are a number of brands you should purchase from instantly by way of their web site. There are additionally a number of on-line marketplaces, or websites that facilitate buying from many various sources (type of like how REI is a marketplace for a number of totally different outside manufacturers), that help worldwide clients.

In these instances, you’ll give you the chance to add a product to your purchasing cart, hit “buy”, and select a delivery technique — aaaalmost identical to you’d in case you have been purchasing on an internet site in your home nation.

rakutan product page

Advantages to delivery immediately via online marketplaces and brand websites

The most important professional of this technique is its simplicity and, should you’re only shopping for one or two gadgets, it could actually significantly minimize the cost of using a proxy service — particularly since you gained’t encounter any further service, packaging, or consolidation charges. On giant marketplaces, like Rakuten, at the least, it’s additionally a reasonably simple process, straightforward sufficient to navigate in combined Kanji/English by way of Google Translate, and you possibly can pay by way of PayPal.

Just observe that the delivery value gained’t be calculated till after Rakuten has acquired affirmation from the vendor you’re buying from, in a follow-up e-mail. You then have the chance to accept the fee or cancel the order. For instance, for a small Mystery Ranch bag, I used to be faced with the following value:

  • Bag: 1,836 JPY ($16.40 USD)
  • Delivery: 1,864 JPY ($16.60 USD)
  • Complete: 3,700 JPY ($33 USD)


The delivery value, which was roughly $17 USD, ended up being about half of what I might have paid on a proxy service.


Disadvantages to direct delivery via marketplaces

In fact, there are a number of downsides to this technique. First, not all merchandise listed on these marketplaces are available to international clients and, even if it seems attainable, the store might deny your request to ship internationally.

Second, these websites don’t have native English variations, so that you’ll need to depend on Google Translate to navigate them.

Lastly, while it’s typically cheaper than a proxy service, it’s still not low cost — although, I assume what are you able to anticipate from shopping for gadgets from abroad?

Additionally, concentrate to what worldwide delivery means with each of those marketplaces. A few of them don’t technically supply international delivery, but have partnered with a proxy service to present this for you.

Greatest Japanese marketplaces to use:

First, there are a couple of marketplaces that help international purchases, like:

  • Rakuten is Japan’s eBay and, like eBay, has gadgets on the market either via auction or direct buy. Although not guaranteed, many sellers will ship direct to worldwide addresses.
  • Yahoo!Auctions is one other giant auction retailer in Japan. Like Rakuten, it’s up to the seller as to whether or not or not they need to ship internationally. However it’s value checking if the merchandise you’re looking for isn’t out there on Rakuten.
  • is Japan’s largest Japanese retailer. They don’t instantly ship internationally, however they’ve their very own dedicated proxy service, Buyee. Simply notice that not each product obtainable on is obtainable for purchase on Buyee.
  • Tokyu Arms, like Zozo, don’t technically ship internationally but companion with Buy Sensible Japan as their most popular proxy service.

There are additionally some individual outlets/sellers of brands we like who will ship to international clients:

  • Blue Lug, which sells bike luggage and gear, ships internationally, accepts worldwide credit cards and PayPal funds, and processes all orders in USD.
  • Resistant, a bike-centric carry model, now ships immediately to overseas clients.
  • Unby, whereas I used to be unable to discover any particular documentation round worldwide delivery on Unby, they do have an “outside Japan” choice on their checkout page and help worldwide payments. Also value noting this can be a type of hybrid marketplace/brand website, as AS2OV owns this website and sells both their and other brands on Unby.

Hire a Traveler

The third and remaining approach to receive gadgets from Japan is to use a person-to-person supply app that connects consumers with vacationers going between the nation you’d like to order a product from and the nation/city you live in.


How it works

These apps join you with vacationers who’re going between the country you want to purchase one thing from (i.e. Japan) and your house nation (i.e. Canada). You then pay them a small payment (around $20, relying on the item’s measurement and value) plus the price of the merchandise you want to buy, and the traveler will deliver the item for you.


Advantages to person-to-person delivery

This technique solely is sensible when you’re taking a look at exorbitant delivery costs or, for no matter purpose, aren’t in a position to purchase the merchandise you needed by means of the earlier two strategies.

For instance, once I tried to purchase a B Jirushi Yoshida from Japanese retailer BEAMS via ZenMarket, I used to be hit with an error message saying “this item is blocked by our system because we had a negative experience with this seller.” Nevertheless, I was in a position to request the merchandise by way of the person-to-person supply app Grabr, and simply paid with my American bank account.


Disadvantages to person-to-person delivery

In fact, there are some obvious cons to this technique. For one, you gained’t find a way to return or change the item you acquired. Second, you do have to meet the traveler in individual or decide the item up from a public location — which actually limits this feature simply to individuals dwelling in larger metropolitan areas, and is less convenient than door-to-door delivery. And eventually, you’re not assured to match with a traveler in a timely method — or at all.

Greatest apps to use

Grabr is actually the one platform that fosters person-to-person deliveries. It’s straightforward to use, get set up, and request gadgets. The one factor I don’t like about it, although, is that you simply want to link up a checking account — not a debit/bank card or PayPal, which makes me involved about privateness and security.

Greatest Japanese Manufacturers for High-High quality Carry

Now that you understand how to navigate Japan’s on-line purchasing course of as a world customer, what are you going to purchase? To start out, listed here are a couple of of our favourite Japanese manufacturers — giant and small — at Carryology:

1. The North Face Purple Label

How to buy: By way of a proxy service.

Like many main manufacturers, The North Face’s product line in Japan, Purple Label, is totally different than what you’d discover at house. Led by Japanese designer Eiichiro Homma, The North Face Purple Label blends urban road type with outside, technical materials to create a compelling line of clothes and luggage.

2. PORTER by Yoshida & Co.

How to purchase: Via a proxy service.

PORTER, the 57-year-old baby model of mother or father company Yoshida & Co., is well-known in Japan and internationally for its meticulous craftsmanship and considerate designs. Look to them for carry across numerous totally different categories — from business to journey and everyday carry.


How to buy: By way of a proxy service (ZenMarket doesn’t help BEAMS).

BEAMS is a outstanding Japanese department retailer and trend label, with a wide range of clothing, carry, and even furnishings and homegoods. Whereas most of their products are created underneath their very own labels, additionally they have some in depth collaborations with brands like Arc’teryx, Manhattan Portage, Mission Workshop and Yoshida & Co. (B JIRUSHI YOSHIDA).

4. master-piece

How to purchase: By way of a proxy service.

master-piece’s luggage blend practical design and high-quality craftsmanship with a singular, trendy aesthetic. As the Carryology staff stated in our roundup of favorite Japanese brands, master-piece “places high value on superior craftsmanship, creating each of their bags by hand in their BASE OSAKA workshop and taking great pride in showcasing the skills of Japanese artisans to the world.” They’re well worth the effort to get your palms on one.

5. Resistant

How to purchase: Immediately via their web site.

Born behind a motorcycle shop within the early ‘00s to solve for Japan’s lack of messenger luggage, Resistant has now grown right into a full-fledged brand creating all-weather gear you possibly can rely on. From backpacks and messenger luggage to belts and, sure, even a espresso koozie in your bike, Resistant’s line of bike-centric gear is value a look. Bonus points: they ship direct to abroad clients.

6. Blue Lug

How to buy: Instantly by way of their web site.

A bicycle store with experience in the bike carry world, Blue Lug carries an awesome vary of totes, backpacks, pouches, and bike luggage made from high quality, water resistant supplies. You may also purchase quite a lot of different brands, corresponding to bike luggage from Fairweather by way of Blue Lug.


How to purchase: Via a proxy service.

Somewhat than Gore-Tex and outdoor-ready designs, HERZ focuses on lovely, handcrafted leather-based luggage and accessories; a extra chic type of carry. Both long-lasting and designed with a meticulous consideration to detail, HERZ’s timeless luggage and equipment are an exquisite example of high quality, Japanese leatherwork.

8. Postalco

How to buy: By means of a proxy service.

From totes to backpacks and wallets to pouches, Tokyo-based model Postalco brings its minimalist designs to life by way of conventional Japanese craft expertise. Using distinctive supplies akin to textured leathers and Farmer’s Felt (a durable paper materials), their luggage and accessories might look simple, however they’re far from peculiar.


How to buy: On the worldwide version of their web site.

Specializing in on a regular basis carry, FREDRIK PACKERS creates versatile gear designed to take you from enterprise conferences to enjoyable afternoons in the park. Their line of handcrafted, nylon messenger luggage, backpacks, hip luggage, and accessories have an city aesthetic with a nod to retro outside gear. Additionally they have a youngsters’ line, for little carriers.

10. and wander

How to buy: Immediately by way of their web site. They settle for international payments by way of Sq.. They do not ship to Hong Kong.

and wander’s designs sit between EDC and outdoor-ready. With a wide range of clothes, footwear, and carry made to resist the outside, but give its users a street-ready look, and wander’s product line is a wonderful blend of recent, minimalist fashion and technical options.

11. Briefing

How to buy: They advocate using the proxy service Tenso, but you should use others as properly.

Specializing in both carry and put on, Briefing creates basic types with a modern twist. Though crafted with robust, durable, and lightweight “military-grade” high quality in mind, they don’t necessarily retain a army aesthetic (though a variety of luggage are available camo). As an alternative, they make use of cloth and design know-how developed by militaries to produce basic EDC, travel, and golf luggage and clothes.

12. Rofmia

How to purchase: By means of a proxy service.

Rofmia, a small, lesser-known trend model is value testing for quality Japanese carry. In addition to their nice leather jackets and luggage, they’ve additionally released the minimalist, understated Shift collection of luggage made from Dyneema Composite materials.

13. Beruf

How to purchase: Use a proxy service to purchase Beruf gadgets by way of 1197store.

Tokyo-based bike carry model Beruf makes glossy, urban-ready luggage for any surroundings. From messenger luggage you’ll be able to toss over your shoulder on a motorcycle journey, to backpacks ready to take you from commute to travel, Beruf’s slick choice of adaptable, weatherproof EDC stands out for each their simple look and practical design.

Japanify Your Carry

Whereas buying Japan-exclusive goods takes a number of more steps than your average on-line purchasing experience, it’s not unimaginable. Through the use of a proxy server, particular marketplaces, or perhaps a person-to-person supply app, you’ll find a way to buy and ship any of the Japan-only carry you’ve been daydreaming of.

For this article, we purchased the next:

Porter Silent Waist Bag

Descente Waist Bag

Mystery Ranch Hip Monkey 2

And psst, we’ll be giving these away in the coming weeks. So hold an eye fixed or subscribe to our publication to be notified.

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