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Moving to Japan from Singapore

What's in this article?
  1. Can I Import My Household Items To Japan?
  2. How Do I Import A Vehicle To Japan?
  3. Leave It To The Experts
Moving to Japan from Singapore

Singapore is a nation of 65 islands and almost as many languages. The people of Singapore speak many languages, with Mandarin, English, Malay, Hokkien, and Cantonese being the most common. Sadly, none of these languages are likely to help you in Japan, except for possibly English. 

Japan is more ethnically homogenous than Singapore, with 98% of residents being Japanese. In Singapore, the nation is more culturally varied, with 76% of residents identifying as Chinese and 15% of the nation identifying as Malay. 

You will have a lot of important decisions to make before importing your goods. What should you bring? What are you allowed to bring? What does it cost? Who can I contact for help? This guide should answer all these questions and more. 

Can I Import my Household Items to Japan?

Yes. What’s more, personal effects are free of duty as long as they meet requirements. Your items must have been owned by you for at least a year and are being imported for your ongoing personal use. The goods should be cleared within six months of your arrival in Japan. You will need to be able to provide a detailed packing list.

Japan does offer one distinct advantage for customs clearance: you do not need to physically attend the clearance procedure, but you will need to have already arrived in country by the time your goods have arrived.

How Do I Import a Vehicle to Japan?

The entire importation process is typically handled by an import agent who will deliver the vehicle to the owner after it has been properly processed and registered. The import agent will handle the following:

Step One: Customs – A customs declaration form must be submitted when the vehicle passes through customs. Here the automobile acquisition tax must be paid. This tax is calculated at 5% of the depreciated value of the vehicle. When the car is cleared, a custom clearance certificate will be awarded.

Step Two: Emissions test and preliminary inspection – The vehicle is then delivered to the testing center for inspection. This process can take about a week.

Step Three: Registration – Your car will need to be registered at the Land Transport Bureau office. Vehicle taxes will be paid at the Land Transport Bureau office and the car registration certificate (shaken sho) is awarded.

Step Four: National Number Plates - Cars cannot be driven in Japan without a national number plate, which can only be obtained once all other importation steps are complete. 

Step Five: Parking Space Certificate – To own a car in Japan you are required to register at your local police station or transport bureau office to receive a registered parking space. You can apply online or in person but be advised you will need to provide documentation and the process takes about a week. 

Leave it to the Experts

Must people work with a shipping agent when importing goods to Japan, and for good reason. You can’t fake an understanding of the Japanese language, and the requirements are complex. Contact A1 Auto Transport for expert guidance. 

Our team of international shipping agents has experience with the international shipping laws governing your move, keeping you in compliance every step of the way. Don’t let unwelcome surprises needlessly complicate your move from Singapore to Japan, contact A1 Auto Transport for a free, no-obligation shipping quote today. 

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Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing. 

After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood. 

With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.

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Mylene Rutllant
It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.

And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.

When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!

I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.

The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.

They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?

So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought they were lacking customers, but the email spoke for itself. In just one email, everything I needed to know was there, including a contact number I could use to get more information or confirm the transport.

I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!

The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!

Testimonial by Cristine Benoit
Cristine Benoit
I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.

After doing some research, I got even more worried reading about all the scams and accidents that can happen. But, I have work to do and couldn’t afford to drive my newly purchased Mini Cooper all the way to Virginia.

Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport. They are very good at their jobs. I spent more than an hour drilling Joe with various questions, and he never once lost his patience. He saw I was interested, so he bore with me until I was satisfied. The driver was also very courteous and my car was intact on arrival. I couldn’t have asked for more.

By the way, the price we first agreed on stayed the same. There were no delays or unexpected “surprises.” I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

David Osallo
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10!

We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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