I’m currently living in Japan and on my journey to N2 (and attempting N1) I found real Japanese manga and novels to be the most significant factor in my perseverance through the slog that is learning Japanese. I’ve looked online and seen how expensive it is to get real Japanese books shipped abroad so I was wondering if there would be interest in starting a service to send books (upon request) from Japan to you guys. 2nd hand book stores are abundant in Japan so I feel like if people were interested in second hand, even with shipping it would be a lot cheaper to get someone to send individual books than to do it through these companies trying to turn such a profit. Just a thought, it definitely helps me with my study and I can’t imagine having got N2 without novels!
Lemme know if you do think its a good idea!
Which companies were you referring to? Mandarake for example doesn’t charge any extra fees for international customers, just the shipping cost, which is set by the shipping companies.
Sounds more like they wish to become a shipping business without becoming a shipping business… so to say.
@benroberts762 senpai: what I did so far whenever had to send or request international goods professionally is I hired a shipping company for doing so. (a) They know their business and are up to date with current regulations and (b) I can hold them reliable for that. If I’m the customer myself I go via retailers… beause of (b).
I do not wish to discourage you to try out whether this might be a business idea or not… but maybe go through some of those questions that will arise for those who are on the other side of the bargain and are supposed to trust a complete and maybe even inexperienced stranger
Yeah all fair enough points. Not trying to complete with international companies haha just thought it might be a cheaper way to get Japanese books out to people. Thanks for advice
Fair enough. Didn’t realize that. My idea was more the cheaper second hand market in Japan which foreigners don’t have access to unless you’re here. I put this post to gauge interest without much research to be honest, few google searches, so very likely I don’t know all companies operating.
You can order books at BookOff and have them sent to a Japanese parcel forwarding service which then sends them abroad. So while I haven’t done this yet (because I mostly read books digitally anyway, through Bookwalker) there are ways to access the cheap BookOff goodies nonetheless
(I don’t want to discourage you either, though, but if you’d offer this service on a larger scale, that would turn into a large time investment for you for picking up, packing and shipping the goods and also money investment for packing material…)
Sounds like a business venture to me! The bloke who started amazon started off in his garage I believe. And you’ve spotted a gap in the market…
Fair enough! Thanks for letting me know
@d-hermit already referenced them but it might be worth taking a look at Mandarake as they do pretty much exactly what you seem to be talking about (ship 2nd hand manga/novels etc overseas). It might be that there’s a lot of mark up that I’m not aware of if things are significantly cheaper in japan but it would probably at least give you a good idea of what is available right now: Mandarake
I’m guessing you could at least get a little ebay business going… don’t know how possible it is to (say) advertise things on the UK site and say they’re coming from Japan (god knows uk ebay is full of chinese businesses). If you’re good at selecting your stock you could do really well! Could do just nice secondhand japanese culture things too… I was looking for a ‘pig incense burner’ or one of those glass wind chimes the other day, and what was available was hugely expensive and they weren’t even nice.