Importing Guide
For Games, Merch and other Japanese Goods

Table of Content

Buy directly from

Amazon Japan is my favourite store to buy otome games from.

Because it’s easy to use and familiar, being the same as your local amazon.

You can also turn the language from Japanese to English and will feel no difference to your English shopping experience.

They naturally accept foreign credit cards and let you pay in your own currency to their exchange rate, which are at least similar to the actual market rates.

In the checkout they already take care of your import fees so you don’t have to worry about a thing.

Shipping is extremely fast with DHL Express, usually arriving in Europe within three days, though it just costs around 1500 yen.

You can easily buy new games and limited editions as well as used games for fair prices.


Depending on your country Surugaya offers international shipping – though beware items for international shipping are more limited, than if you browse the Japan only site.

They mainly offer used games as well as merch items to very competitive prices!

They also offer various payment methods, though you pay in Yen and the Japanese store does not accept foreign credit cards.

CD Japan
Cd Japan

All in One

A lot of people adore CD Japan.

It has similar benefits like amazon, with a website operable in English, having new items available and offering fast and cheap shipping – though they charge extra for DHL express. Still especially DHL express shipping is cheap, compared to others (non amayon) sellers. They also offer a variety of payment methods, like credit card, debit card or PayPal, allowing you to pay in your own currency.

The benefit in comparison to amazon is, that they also offer proxy services, meaning you can ask them to order a Japan only item for you, they store it in their warehouse and you can this way ship different orders together. (more information down below)

To me it just not feels as easy to use as amazon Japan, though it’s a similar good choice. But you have to take care of import fees and providing the information to customs yourself.



But they also have some drawbacks:

First it obviously takes longer to first ship the item to them and then to you. 

It not only takes longer, it also costs more, because you have to pay Japanese taxes (which you don’t on amazon), then pay domestic shipping within Japan (depending on the store), for each purchase many proxies take about a 300¥ fee for their services. After the item arrived at the proxy, it has to be shipped to you, so again shipping costs, but usually you can chose between cheaper and expensive express shipping. When the parcel is small enough so that it can be shipped by airmail, it doesn’t cost more than 1500¥ – even with insurance!

But you see, especially when you buy many small items, the costs can really accumulate.

Proxy Services

What is a proxy?

Proxy buyers are shops, that buy in Japan only shops for you, ship your items to their store, where they can also store it for a set amount of time (and wait for possible further purchases) and then send all your items to you. Sounds great? It is! For some stores proxy buyers are the only chance to get the products (like mercari Japan, Yahoo Auctions, Rakuten, Rakuma etc.)



 But considering, that you might not be able to get your hands on this item otherwise, I think it is a fair price to pay in the end.

AND items you purchase via proxy buyers can be a whole lot cheaper than on other market places.

It looks like the cons outweight the pros, but I like using proxies especially for cheap used games or things you can’t get on amazon.


They are easy to use and you can search on all available shops (Rakuma, Rakuten, Yahoo Auctions) at the same time, which is super convenient. With other proxy buyers you can only search in one store at a time.

They also often have vouchers (I for example have used the welcome 500¥ voucher two times now).

It just doesn’t provide mercari.


They even support an app. 

This is one of the few proxy to order from mercari Japan.

The downside is that they charge 200¥ extra for Yahoo Auctions.

In general this proxy is not as expensive as White Rabbit Express, but still too expensive in my opinion. Almost all other proxies here should be a better choice, unless you want to buy on mercari. Then buyee seems your only option at the moment (and CD Japan).

Other Proxies

Every proxy has advantages and disadvantages

  • Neokyo (lower buying fee, but paypal fee, no mercari support at the moment)
  • ZenMarket (oldie, but goldie)
  • DeJapan: lowest fees with 100¥. Mercari costs 500¥ though. But you can shop from all shops even like Alice Net to buy your otome related products!
  • Hoyoyo also can be used for mercari.

Forwarding Services

If you use a forwarding service, you place the order in the Japanese stores as if you were in Japan yourself, but insert the address of the shipping forwarding service. Once it arrives in their warehouse the process is similar to proxies: you pay them a small fee for their services and they send your orders to you. 

As you don’t have to pay fees for individual items or orders, like you have to with proxies, especially if you order many items or only from one store, a forwarding service ends up cheaper than a proxy.

Big in Japan

A forwarding, proxy service and figure store.


A pure forwarding service. A bit easier to use and more transparent than Big in Japan.

Proxies Comparison

FromJapan300¥/item45 daysJapan Post, FedEx, DHL, ECMS
Shipping calculator
(fair prices)
orders and responses within a dayPaypal, CreditCards in 14 currencies or ¥ (non-market rates, but similar)
+200¥/succesfull Yahoo Auctions bid
packaging fees
30 days
(afterwards 100¥/day)
optional 500¥/order insurance for domestic shipping

Japan Post, FedEx, DHL, UPS, Buyee Air Delivery
shipping calculator
- most more expensive than FromJapan
immediate chat responsePayPal, CreditCards in your own currency (exchange fees by your bank)
500¥< packaging fees
45 days
(afterwards 210¥< per week)
Japan Post, FedEx, DHL
Shipping calculator
(average costs)
responses within a day
discord server
PayPal, Visa, MasterCard, AMEX, JCB in your own currency (transaction fees by your bank)
3,5% money deposit fee
300¥ shipping fee
45 days
(up to 45 additional days 50¥/day)
Japan Post, FedEx, DHL, ECMS, Zen Express
shipping calculator
(competitive prices)
(+300¥ ZenMarket fee)
Only in ¥ to add funds to your wallet via PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, Meastro (fees by your bank)
DeJapan100¥/order45 days
(afterwards 100¥/day)
Japan Post, FedExPayPal, Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, Diners Club, JCB
Hoyoyo300¥/order30 days
(afterwards 50¥/package up to 90 days)
Japan Post, FedEx
(competitive prices)
PayPal, CreditCards added funds
CD Japan300¥/item
Japan Post, FedEx, DHL
shipping can be combined with their own store items
Shipping calculator in your shopping card
(relatively low prices)
response and order in 1-2 daysPayPal, Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, Diners Club, JCB, Postal Money, Alipay, Cash, Debit Card
in Yen or USD
Big in Japan Proxy500¥
15% of item price
30 daysJapan Post, DHL
NO combinated shipping with their forwarding or local store service!
NO Yahoo Auctions supportPayPal, Credit Card, Debit Card, Google/Apple/Microsoft Pay, WeChat Pay
Big in Japan Forwarding500¥ simple
1500¥ combining multiple parcels
30 days
max. 10 parcels
Japan Post, DHL
NO combinated shipping with their proxy or local store service!
PayPal, Credit Card, Debit Card, Google/Apple/Microsoft Pay, WeChat Pay
Tenso Forwarding50¥Japan Post, DHLPayPal, Visa, MasterCard, JCB, AmEx, Union Pay
(in your own currency following the market exchange rate)


To my knowledge there is no way to directly buy games from the Japanese eShop, as they neither accept foreign credit cards nor can you easily make a Japanese PayPal.

The only way left is to buy vouchers.

Most popular might be buying them on PlayAsia, but they can be pricey as they don’t take the real exchange rate into account and you end up paying more than you would have to.

That’s why I prefer buying gift cards on Amazon Japan. As this is a region locked product you will have to set your payment information to Japanese (go to devices and then payment) and set a (random) Japanese address as your preferred address. Just setting the Japanese address as the current address does NOT work, you have to set it to your default address. An address by a forwarding service like Tenso does also NOT work. So choose a random Japanese address as default and don’t forget to change it back later, when you want physical item to be shipped to your real address 😉

This way you have fair exchange rates and you’ll receive your code per mail within seconds!


In the end, there sadly is no best or cheapest way to import your goods from Japan. 

It all depends on how much you value ease of use or price and which shipping methods are available for your country.

My personal favourites stays Amazon Japan, as it’s easy and quick and often well priced.

Only if I can’t find a game there, I will check on FromJapan, as you can browse a lot of different sites at the same time.

In theory you could then request these items on cheaper sites like DeJapan or a forwarding service, but it will take you more time to do that, than just ordering directly from FromJapan. Sure, you’ll save some money but it will also not be as hassle free.

So it’s your choice how much more work you want to have to saving a bit more money or the other way round.

I know importing your first Japanese goods is a daunting task, but it’s all about making the first steps and then you can’t really go wrong with either of these choices.

Importing is expensive, but still better than not having a chance of getting the items at all!