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How to buy from Mercari Japan from the US - Ultimate Step by Step Guide
Tuesday , 04 April 2023 , 02 : 09 AM

Buying from Mercari Japan from the US

Introduction

Last Updated: 8/5/2024

Ever wondered how you can buy from Mercari Japan?

Mercari Japan is a gold mine for people who are interested in Japanese items such as video games, action figures, clothing, anime merchandise and so much more. On top of that, you can find popular items for a fraction of the price of what you might see on eBay or other online markets in the USA, Canada or Europe  from people who sell imported Japanese items. Additionally, you will find Japan exclusive stuff not available anywhere else in the world.

Now, here's the catch. If you're not in Japan, you won't be able to buy anything from Mercari Japan. They have a strict policy against selling to foreigners, which means you can't even create an account to browse or set up search alerts.

But don't despair! We've got your back with a step-by-step guide on how to buy from Mercari Japan. We've personally used a bunch of different services to shop for items from Japanese online stores for our own store, and we've had our fair share of bad experiences and wasted money. So in this article, we're going to tell you about the best Japan proxy shopping service to get your items quickly, safely, and at the best possible price.

How to Buy Anything on Mercari Japan from Anywhere in the World - Step by Step Guide

In this article will talk about Remambo.jp, the best proxy shopping service in Japan.

If you follow any of the links in this post to sign up on Remambo, you will get a 1,000 YEN discount on your first order.

A proxy shopping service is a service that allows people to buy items from online marketplace or stores in a different country or region, such as Mercari website Japan. Essentially, a proxy shopping service acts as a middleman between the buyer and the seller.

The greatest benefit of using a proxy service like Remambo, is that you can purchase as many items as you want, from multiple different sellers, and have them all repacked and shipped at the same time in one box, helping you save a ton of money on shipping fees.

We have been doing this for 11 years now, and used over a dozen different service providers to purchase items from Japanese online stores.

Some have very expensive service fees, while others take forever to receive the items and ship them out. Some do not package properly and we end up with damaged items during shipping, and usually there's no reasonable compensation for any damaged items. Some are very slow to make the purchase for us and we end up missing out on items. A few don't have good English speakers for customer support. The list of bad experiences goes on and on.

With Remambo, so far it has been 4 years without a single incident. They are fast and reliable and their service fees are very competitive. They pack everything very well, and we never received a single damaged item (we ship heavy stuff usually). The customer support speaks perfect English and respond super fast, and most important for us above all, they purchase the items instantly and it arrives to their warehouse in 2-3 days usually. This means we can have whatever we bought on Mercari in about 10 days after placing the orders.

In this guide we will show you the best proxy shopping service in Japan, and guide you step by step on how to find items on Mercari Japan, place an order, and get them shipped to you as fast possible.

Step #1 - Sign up to Remambo.jp

 

 

The first step is to sign up to Remambo.jp, its free of charge, no subscription fees or hidden costs. It's all in English, and the customer support team speak English.

If you follow any of the links in this post to sign up on Remambo, you will get a 1,000 YEN discount on your first order.

Click this link: Remambo.jp and click the orange Sign Up button to create an account.

 

 

 

After you register your account, scroll down to the bottom where it says My Account, click on Edit Profile and enter your contact and shipping details.

 

 

 

That's it. Now you're ready to start shopping!

Step #2 - Search for Products on Mercari Japan

 

 

 

While this step might sound pretty straightforward, we have some tips and tricks that will help make your life easier. You can use Remambo to search Mercari.jp for items directly on Remambo's website. The search results have an English translation option, and you can add to cart directly from there and complete your purchase.

If you prefer to search on Mercari.jp directly, below we outlined the process step by step.

Important: Go to the Japanese Version of Mercari

First, and most important, make sure to use the correct site address to access the Japanese version of Mercari. You can follow this link https://jp.mercari.com/

If you spell it any other way, it might take you to a different international version of Mercari that does not have Japanese sellers or items.

 

Use the Search Bar to search for items

 

Type anything you want in this search bar. Don't worry, you can type in English and the results are most of the time accurate. Sometimes you might get different or better results if you type in Japanese. We use google translate for that, but mostly our search terms are in English and the results are always accurate.

 

 

 

At this point, it would be very helpful to see results in English. This way you can read the description and titles to understand what you are buying. I use Google Chrome, so I right click any where on the page and click translate to English. Its super convenient but keep in mind sometimes the translation might not be entirely accurate, but its good enough to know what you are buying most of the time.

Quick Tip - How to display available items only

After entering search terms, the Mercari JP site by default will display all items, including the ones that are sold out.

To display only the items that are available for sale, on desktop scroll down and find Status Menu (or Sales Status sometimes) and tick where it says Sale. On mobile, you need to click Filter that appears on top of the search results and do the same. This way only the items available for sale will be displayed, and you don't waste time sifting through sold out products (or cry when you see that you missed out on an amazing deal (ಥ﹏ಥ) )

 

Click on the product you want to purchase

When you click on any product, make sure Google translate is on, so you can read the description. Note, many items on Mercari Japan are second hand items. So its important you read the description. You also have the option to check seller reviews.

 

 

One thing that is very important to note, lots of items on Mercari Japan usually have the shipping included in the price. It will mention it next to the price as shown in the picture above. However, sometimes it will say Cash on Delivery. We found that usually means shipping is not included, and you will be charged an additional amount on top of the listed amount. 

Copy the Item Url

Once you're happy with what you see, copy the item URL and go to your Remambo account.

Step #3 - Place the Order on Remambo

As of November 2023, Remambo has partnered with Mercari JP, and reduced the service fee for buying from Mercari from 700 JPY to 500 JPY. In addition to that, orders now arrive much faster to the warehouse. As fast as 1 or 2 days in a lot of cases.

Now we need to add the item URL to Remambo so they can buy from Mercari for us.

 Mercari Add Link Tab

 

First, click on the Mercari tab and paste the URL in the search bar and click enter or tap the magnifying glass icon.

 Mercari add product

mercari jp add product 2

 

In the next step, Remambo will show the item details such as price, shipping cost, and it highlights the sellers rating, which is important to always take note of before purchasing.

Scrolling further down on this page you can see all the images the seller provides and you can even translate the text by a click of a button. Essentially, you can do all your Mercari shopping directly through Remambo's website without having to visit Mercari actual website.

On this page, you will notice Buyer Protection is ticked by default.

This will be an extra 500 YEN charge. We never insured any items we purchased in the past, and not once did we have a problem. You can consider this if you are buying a high ticket item, but at the end of the day its up to you. If you are buying a lot of stuff, it can add up so keep this in mind.

Click on Add to Cart to finalize the purchase

Purchase and Pay for your Item

 

 

On the next page you can finalize your purchase and place the order for the item.

This is where you will notice the first service fee. For Mercari purchases, Remambo will charge 500YEN in total, which is around 3.4 USD.

Note: The price listed here includes the item cost, domestic shipping fee (if any) and Remambo service fee for the purchase. You will be notified when the item arrives to Remambo warehouse, from there you can chose a shipping method and find out the price for international shipping.

You can also check the shipping methods and rates via Remambo's shipping calculator by following this link https://www.remambo.jp/help/calc.html

Make sure you're happy with everything, and that you didn't leave insurance ticked by accident in the previous step if you didn't want it, and click on Pay.

Quick Tip

At this stage in the process, I usually do conversion from YEN to USD, and do a couple of quick searches locally. Most of the time, I find I am getting great deals even with the added international shipping costs on top. We usually consolidate a big package of 20-30 items to save on shipping costs. Remambo gives you free storage for up to 60 days, so you can take advantage of that to order a bunch of items and ship them all at once to save big on shipping.

Keep in mind, while doing all of the above, you are cutting out the middle man, who in this case is a person who imports products from Japan and sells them locally with a markup. Probably someone who is buying from Japan through this exact method. There's a big potential for you to save a lot on Japanese items if you do the purchase directly from Japan as we are discussing in this article.

Choose a Payment Method and Pay

Lastly, choose a payment method and place your order in the checkout stage. It's that easy to buy from Mercari Japan.

 

 

You can pay with credit card or PayPal.

You can pick several items, and pay for all at once. What we usually do is load up the purse with balance first, gather all the links from Mercari and add them to our shopping cart and then place the order.

Step #4 - Package Consolidation and International Shipping

Japanese sellers usually ship fast and the items arrive to Ramambo's warehouse within a few days. Sometimes as fast 1 or 2 days. Sometimes it could take up to a week.

Once your item arrives, you will receive an email from Remambo that your item has reached their warehouse and is available in your account.

You can view the status of the items you ordered and the items that arrived in the orders page.

 

 

On mobile, click My Orders from the bottom navigation bar. On desktop, click on My Orders on the left side bar.

Here you will find the orders you placed and the ones that arrived to the warehouse.

Note, Remambo allows the item to stay in your account for up to 60 days. So make sure you get it shipped out in time or they will dispose of your items. 

Package Consolidation - Compile Multiple Orders to Save on Shipping Costs

Once all your orders arrive to the warehouse within a few days, you can scroll down to the bottom of the My Orders page to begin package consolidation. What this means is Remambo will compile all your orders into one box so they can all be shipped at once.

You can choose to compile everything, or compile only the ones you want by ticking the box next to each item in the list.

 

After you are done choosing which items you want to ship, the next page will show you a couple of extra optional services.

 

The consolidation service is free of charge on Remambo which is very nice of them. But I highly recommend you use the Repacking Service for 500 YEN extra. If you are purchasing a lot of items, Remambo will take everything out of whatever local packages your stuff arrived in, and repack them properly in one big box. This saves A LOT of space and they can stuff many more items in one big box. Additionally, each item will be bubble wrapped and packed very well to be shipped internationally safely. Like we mentioned before, in 4 years we never had a single item arrive damaged.

As for the Stretch Film Wrapping Service, we never used that, but you can consider it for extra safety.

Pick Shipping Method & Adjust Customs Declaration

In the next step you can select whatever shipping method you want. We usually ship with Fedex. It's always the cheapest from Japan for us. But don't worry, you can change this later.

Note, you will not be getting the shipping cost just yet. After your items are compiled you will get the actual weight and cost about a day later. Remambo pack the items very quickly and it never takes longer than 1 or 2 days.

 

This next step is very important. If you buy on Mercari and ship to Europe for example or any other place where custom duties and fees on imports are extortionate, this next step will help you save a lot of money.

In this step, you can freely adjust the prices of all your items to whatever you want them to be. I usually set the prices at %50 less than what I purchased them for on Mercari. This saves me a lot of money since I pay around %30 in custom duties.

 

Once you're done here, click next on the bottom of the page, and click Compile Parcel on the next page.

Final Step

After 1 or 2 days max, you will receive an email from Remambo that your package has been compiled and ready to be shipped!

You can go to the My Account page, and find all the details under Parcels. From there you can choose your parcel and make the payment for international shipping. You can also change the shipping method here if you'd like.

About 1 or 2 days later, Remambo will get the package shipped out. If you chose Fedex for shipping, expect it to arrive very quickly. In under a week usually for us.

Buying from Mercari Japan Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ #1: Why Mercari is so popular in Japan?

Mercari is an online marketplace that is very popular in Japan for several reasons. The site and app offers a user-friendly interface and a secure platform for buying and selling goods. Secondly, the app has a wide variety of products available, from clothing and accessories to electronics and home goods. This has made it a one-stop-shop for many people in Japan, and outside ;)

Mercari website allow Japanese sellers to sell items they no longer need or want, which is a popular trend in Japan called "minimalism." Many people in Japan are interested in decluttering and minimizing their possessions, and Mercari provides an easy way to do so.

What does this mean for us? We can find the most amazing deals on a lot of items at very attractive prices. You can think of Mercari as the US equivalent of OfferUp or Craigslist, or essentially an online flea market of some sorts. 

FAQ #2: Why use a proxy buying service to purchase from Mercari Japan or Japanese online stores?

There are several reasons why someone might choose to use a proxy buying service to purchase from Mercari Japan:

  1. Payment options: Mercari Japan accepts only a Japanese payment method, such as credit cards issued in Japan or bank transfers from Japanese banks. A proxy buying service such as Remambo can help by providing alternative payment options that are accessible to international buyers, such as PayPal or credit cards issued outside Japan.

  2. Shipping restrictions: Mercari Japan primarily ships within Japan, and international shipping options are limited. A proxy buying service can help by providing a local address in Japan, consolidating multiple purchases into one package, and forwarding the package to the buyer's country.

  3. Trustworthiness: Mercari Japan operates on a peer-to-peer model, which means that buyers and sellers transact directly with each other. While this can be a great way to find unique and rare items, it can also lead to fraudulent activities. A proxy buying service can help by providing an additional layer of protection and verifying the seller's identity and reputation before making a purchase.

Overall, a proxy buying service like Remambo.jp can help simplify the buying process, provide access to unique items not available elsewhere, and mitigate risks associated with cross-border transactions.

FAQ #3: Does Mercari JP website ship internationally?

No.

As we mentioned earlier, you aren't even allowed to create an account on Mercari Japan if you are outside of Japan. You need a Japanese phone number to create one.

However, if you visit the Mercari Japan website, you might notice a popup for a partner website of Mercari called Buyee which does offer international shipping.

But, there's a HUGE drawback to Buyee.

What we found over the years is the vast majority of Japanese sellers opt out of this service. Which means you will be missing out on a ton of items and awesome deals since most sellers who opt out, won't have their items listed on Buyee.

On top of that, Buyee requires you to have a subscription plan active in order to make purchases, while Remambo does not!

FAQ #4: How to translate Mercari app to English?

The easiest way is to use Google Chrome. On desktop you can right click anywhere on the page and click translate to English. Once you translate Mercari Japan to English, sifting through items and brand names becomes a lot easier and you will now exactly what you are buying.

FAQ #5: Can I use Remambo to buy from other Japanese Stores?

Yes! Foreign customers can buy from Yahoo Auctions, Rakuten, Pokemon Center and many other places.

FAQ #6: What kind of items can I buy from Mercari Japan?

Just about anything you can think of from all popular categories!

  1. Clothing and fashion accessories: Mercari Japan is known for its wide selection of fashionable clothing items, including traditional Japanese wear, streetwear, designer brands, and vintage clothing.

  2. Beauty and personal care products: Japanese skincare and makeup products are highly sought after around the world, and Mercari Japan is a great place to find them. The marketplace also offers hair care products, fragrances, and other personal care items.

  3. Electronics: Japan is home to some of the world's most innovative electronics companies, and Mercari Japan is a great place to find new and used electronics, including smartphones, cameras, laptops, and gaming consoles from Nintendo, Sega, Sony and many more.

  4. Toys and collectibles: Mercari Japan is a treasure trove of unique and rare toys and collectibles, including vintage toys, anime figurines, and limited edition merchandise. As well lots of Japan exclusive only items.

  5. Home goods: Kitchen appliances to furniture and home décor items, Mercari Japan has a wide range of home goods available for purchase.

FAQ #7: How to buy stuff from Yahoo Auctions Japan?

Remambo.jp also allows you to purchase items from Yahoo Auctions in Japan! You also have the ability to bid on auctions, and even place sniper bids. You can use Remambo directly to search for items or just copy and paste auction links to view, purchase or bid on products.

Other tips and tricks when buying from Mercari japan website

  1. Always check seller reviews to ensure the seller has enough activity on Mercari

  2. If you are shopping for clothes, keep in mind Japanese sizes are different than US sizes

  3. If you are searching for specific brand, it sometimes helps to search in Japanese if you don't find enough listings for specific categories. Use Google to find the brand names in Japanese text

  4. Make sure to access Mercari from https://jp.mercari.com/ so you can purchase for Japanese Mercari Sellers

Final Thoughts

After years of working with Remambo, we decided to write up a full, in depth review and step-by-step guide because we feel like they deserve it.

They are fast and reliable and offer competitive prices. Only comment we have for Remambo, is the website design is a bit outdated, and can use a refresh.

Let us know in the comments below on what things you would like to purchase from Japan!

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