Show and Sell Japan, formerly Tell and Sell Japan

Book Rate

What I call Book rate or printed matter rate, the former sasshi kotsuzumi, is now called You-mail in English and in Japanese is written with hiragana for yu u, katakana for me-ru (yuu me-ru, ゆうメール).

The flat rates for anywhere in Japan are:

up to 150 grams: 180 yen
up to 250 grams: 210 yen
up to 500 grams: 290 yen
up to 1 kg: 340 yen
up to 2 kg: 450 yen
up to 3 kg: 590 yen

H+W+D limit: 1.7 m

These can also be sent postage on delivery, POD, or chakubarai in Japanese, entailing an extra 20 yen collection fee. Many of us have had the problem that the post office clerk says book rate packages cannot be sent chakubarai. I convinced my neighborhood clerks that it could be done by telling them I knew it could because I had received and paid for packages sent that way. Then I spent 20 minutes waiting while they looked through all their manuals until they found the answer and agreed with me. For those without the language skills or patience to do that, I would suggest taking in a printout of the Japan Post homepage that details the information in Japanese (see below).

Other options for a fee include registered mail and sokutatsu express but I doubt if many people would want to pay for those.

A corner must be left open so the contents are visible, or you can tape up the package after showing the clerk that it
contains only items of the allowed types: books, magazines, printed matter, CDs, DVDs. If you are sure of the weight and the contents are visible, it is okay to put the stamps on, write yu-u me-ru in red ink in Japanese on the package, and put it in a mailbox without going to the post office. If you want to send by chakubarai you will have to go to the post office window.

Also with the book rate, note that sometimes it is possible to cram something that would be going for the top rate of 590 yen into a 500 yen ExPack envelope, saving 90 yen (or even more if you buy the envelopes at a discount ticket shop).

The information on You-Mail can be accessed via the product and service indexes (shouhin sa-bisu ichiran) on the Japan Post Japanese and English top pages:

On the English top page under Postal Service there is a link with an arrow in front of it titled Product Service Index. Clicking on that takes you to:

This index page displays sort of strangely (in my browser at least) and it is a little hard to tell what parts are meant to be under the international mail heading and what parts are under the domestic mail heading. It seems to be in two columns and the runover from the domestic section appears in the top right column making it look like it is part of the international mail information. Anyway, there is a link there for You-Mail (Booklet Parcels):

That takes you to the You-Mail page, which unfortunately is in Japanese only! If you want to do a printout about chakubarai to take to the post office, first print out the You-Mail page, then scroll down to You-Mail menu and click on Option Service, print out the option service page, then click on chakubarai, which is the second item in the list of options, and print out the page you get from that which shows the fee is 20 yen. Voila!

If you have a hint about using the book rate to deliver items in Japan, please add it to the comments below.

>>Read about other methods for sending money and items.



  1. The urls for the You-Mail COD (ゆうメール着払) service described above are (in order):


    THE SECOND PAGE (the Option Service page)

    THE THIRD PAGE (the You-Mail “chakubarai” page)

    Comment by Nicolas Cueto — February 22, 2009 @ 11:55 pm

  2. If you go to 7-11 they offer YU-MEERU, but it seems different to this one described above.

    They will measure the width of your packet. If it is under 1cm, the cost is only 80yen! If it is under 2cm, I think it is about 140yen.

    (Note: If it is over 2cm, they will not accept it by YU-MEERU and will offer something like ‘takkyubin’ which is quite expensive, in this case you are better off finding a post office)

    Comment by ZC — August 7, 2011 @ 9:28 am

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