I was at first a bit impressed, but now just frustrated with the Japanese postal service. Here’s what happened.

I got a package delivered earlier today when I was still at work. It’s actually for Steve, who will be in Japan tomorrow. So they left me a notice of failed delivery, since I guess they need someone to sign for it. This is despite the fact that my apartment has special locked boxes for large packages. Anyway, Japan Post does have a nice system to schedule redelivery, either via phone or the web. Usually this works fine, but I’m planning on being away all day tomorrow, and I’m going to meet Steve later in the afternoon after he arrives. I wasn’t sure if the package would arrive in the morning before I left (the earliest time slot is 9AM-12), so I figured I could just pick it up. Why? Because I live right across from a post office. I’m not exaggerating. It is literally across the street. I can see it from my balcony, and I could probably break a window with a rock if I wanted.

As soon as I got home, I used the web form and told them I’d pick up the package at the post office across the street. I then noticed that the pickup window is open 24/7, which is quite impressive. I just went over to see if I could get it, and apparently I can’t. My package is being held at a different post office, about 15 or 20 minutes away by bicycle. The worker there said that if I requested it to be sent to this post office, it might not arrive until the afternoon. So now I’m going to try and re-use the web form to have it re-delivered to my apartment in the morning. Hopefully it will get here before I have to leave…

I don’t understand a thing about postal zoning, let alone Japanese postal zoning, but my own naive logic would say that a package would be left at the post office closest to the delivery address. It’s not like this is a small branch or anything. It’s huge and has a 24 hour counter. Oh well.