Category Archives: Japanese Post

Goshuin – Shrine Stamp Collecting

A wonderful souvenir from Japan is your very own book of Shrine Stamps or Goshuin. Called Goshuincho, your stamp book can be stamped at most shrines and temples throughout Japan. Buy a book at any shrine where offered for around 1000-1500 yen. Shine books are available at some souvenir stores as well but if you buy from shrines they will likely feature a design unique to the shrine or local area. Find the Goshuin area of the shrine/temple and the monks will stamp and sign in calligraphy the name of the shrine and date usually for 300 yen (for each stamp in your book).

Goshuin used to be a way for pilgrims to show proof of their visits to shrines but they have gained popularity among young people and tourists. Please be aware that monks see these as religious symbols/objects so extra writing or other souvenir type of stamps included in the book may be seen as insult or defacement.

If you forget your book, you can ask for a loose paper stamp and glue it in your book later. Shrines usually have a stack available for this purpose.

Blog posts to read more about goshuin:

https://www.thewanderingsuitcase.com/collecting-goshuin-as-a-souvenir/

http://www.kyotoursjapan.com/goshuin/

https://www.japanhoppers.com/en/features/temples_shrines/320/

Stamp collecting can become addicting and the shrines feed into it by offering special stamps and colors for different holidays. Instagrams to follow for shrine stamps and special stamp happenings:

cinzano_limetto
chille0229
mikko0718
holakanappe
or search #goshuin

It’s a fun way to track your time in Japan and the places you visit along the way.  Jennifer McCarthy – January 2018

 

 

The Japanese Postal Service 〒

The red, double-crossed capital T is the symbol of the postal service. It is used on maps to indicate the location of post offices. It is also displayed at places where stamps are sold. If you live off-base, you can pay your electric and telephone bills at any Japanese post office or convenience store.
If you send mail through the Japanese postal system, the post office on base requests you use your Japanese address, not the APO address. Your Japanese address looks like this:

Your Name
PSC Box Number Here
Yokota AB, Fussa Shi
Tokyo 197-0001

If you have the correct postage you can mail postcards and letters through the orange Japanese mailbox outside the post office

Postal Dimensions
The sizes of Japanese cards and envelopes are different from American standards. If you send something the wrong size, you may get your posted item back with a note showing the amount of insufficient postage. For delivery at the standard rate, postcard dimensions must be between 14-23.5 cm long and 9-12 cm wide. Envelopes should be 14-23.5 cm long and between 9-12 cm wide and not more than 1cm thick. The ends of American business envelopes can be folded over and taped.

For the rules in full, see www.post.japanpost.jp/english/fee/domestic/letter.html

Post Offices Near Yokota
•Main Fussa Post Office
DIRECTIONS: Go straight out the Fussa gate, cross the tracks and veer left at the ”Y”. Cross the next set of tracks and on down to Okutama Kaido. The post office is on the far right corner. The post office has a tiny parking lot inside the walls, to the right of the building on Okutama Kaido.

•Higashi Fussa
DIRECTIONS: Make a right out the Fussa gate onto Rt. 16 and then a left at the signal for Higashi Fussa station. Cross the tracks. At the traffic light, go straight ahead you’ll see the post office on the left, just before the next set of traffic lights. There is parking available in a dirt lot on the left just before the Post Office. Since there are only two designated spaces, it’s sometimes easier to park on the side street near the intersection before the post office.

•Matsunaka-Danchi
DIRECTIONS: Turn right out the East Gate, left at the light, then hard right at the five-way intersection. Go several blocks down the tree-lined avenue with apartment buildings on either side. There’s a tiny post office on the far right corner of the second large intersection.

•Akiruno Post Office
This one is a little further but it is where you may have to go if someone sends you registered mail through the Japanese post and you get a Non-Deliverable Notice in your PSC box. Address: 3-2-1 Akigawa, Akiruno-shi. GPS: 35.731550, 139.285394. DIRECTIONS: Turn left out the Fussa Gate and right at the first light. Stay on this road across the Tama River. When you reach Akigawa Station, turn right onto the divided road in front of Tokyu Department Store. Turn left at the light near the end of the block. The post office will be on your right.

For more information on deciphering Japanese addresses, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_addressing_system