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Crazy World of Shipping Prices
#16
Thanks, Chris!!
This is important: 
"Unfortunately, with the current global situation and the spread of the coronavirus, Japan Post has suspended services to a high number of countries."

Also, if there is Japan Post Air shipping possible, this remark from Japan Post web reveals the problem:

 "Loading mail items onto airplanes is expected to take considerable time due to the shortage of cargo space caused by the reduction of flights."

There is obviously a shortage of flights to and fro Japan, and some countries can't expect direct delivery. Japan Post remark for my country:

"Delays will be experienced in the delivery of mail items in the country (territory).Items will not be handed directly to addressees."


Also, I noticed one other thing. I could order, "standard Plarail three car train" (that would be a small packet) by Japan Post from PlazaJapan. I suppose they could squeeze somehow small packages on the reduced number of regular flights. But I cannot order anything bigger (like a Plarail set) with Japan Post; bigger packages can be delivered by DHL/FedEx only. 
My YouTube Channel: Mister No
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#17
 "Loading mail items onto airplanes is expected to take considerable time due to the shortage of cargo space caused by the reduction of flights."


This; What I mentioned before basically, about common carrier policies and the lack of avaliable planes making this method temporarily unsustainable.

I can actually see how small packets might [emphasis on might] get through if there was limited space on what few flights are leaving, but put it this way, the delays would be pretty substantial - You'd have to consider that your parcel would be waiting indefinitely until an avaliable flight [not guaranteed to be immediate], then would have to assume that your parcel would need to be transferred to another flight at some point, as I suspect what few planes are entering Japan presently aren't going to a whole load of places, so depending on where you were in the world, that might add anything from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the distance between you and the airport your parcel has to go via to reach you.

I mean, for example's sake, let's assume I live in Germany, but there are no flights to/from Japan, however the nearest place with flights to/from Japan is London [Heathrow being a massive terminal for interchanging post between flights & transferring post from air to road], we can assume that Japan Post would be forced to fly your parcel to London for forwarding onto the respective country where it needs to go, obviously adding time to delivery to account for sorting, transfer, and waiting for an outbound flight. Point is, while you could get a small parcel shipped from Japan, it's gonna take a lot longer than usual, unless you just happen to be lucky enough to live in a country that has some of the few flights to Japan still operating.

Incidentally, the practice of transferring mail via Heathrow [and presumably other major international hubs] isn't a COVID measure due to lack of flights - it's been done for years, at least as far back as 2017 when I was working there - Every shift I was on without fail would have at least one or two, usually more 1-ton containers [yes, that much] of mail sacks to be delivered to other European countries - We would unload the stuff, which had usually come from China or the Far East via Dubai, most of which was labelled clearly with it's destination; Spain, Germany and France were common ones. This was/is all part of the Common Carrier system, where if no direct flight exists to a specific destination [E.g, Spain-China], it would be forwarded to the nearest suitable hub for transfer.

Generally, we'd hand it over to Royal Mail, as some nominal amount of those sacks would be destined for the UK, but they'd take it by lorry to their facility across the road, remove the UK bound stuff to be sent straight to HWDC Langley [the UK's central international mail centre handling inbound mail for the UK, not the Langley, VA where the FBI are known to hang out lol :D] in Slough [about 15 mins by road from Heathrow], with the rest being sent straight through the building to Airside [Royal Mail had direct access to jet bridges & the tarmac to collect inbound mail and send out outbound mail], where the sacks, sorted by destination, would be loaded into the next avaliable flight to their final destination.

This stuff was never EMS post, as that was always handled separately by Royal Mail directly [When delivered, it would be handled by ParcelForce, but ParcelForce is just another division of Royal Mail, so for handling purposes at the airport, RM would take care of it before passing it to PF], the caged stuff was always general airmail and small parcels, and was always security tagged, as this stuff would obviously be passing through Customs either at Langley or it's onwards destination, and technically our building [as long as you were inside] was qualified as 'Airside', meaning any packages within had to remain shut for security purposes, unless HMRC [the UK customs agency] specifically requested we open them, or [invariably] the shoddy packaging failed and we had to re-pack the contents of a consignment using the healthy supply of spare boxes we kept on hand ;D.

I have to admit, this thread is great, as it's a good opportunity to reminisce my short career in logistics/aviation lol :D

Failed packaging was commonly on vegetable consignments, which were part of what I called the 'big 3', since every shift you would get these as a consignment, almost by default - the 'big 3' were vegetables/fruit, clothes, and of course, mail. Vegetables were common for failed packaging because of the heat and moisture that would build up inside the shipping container when transported, so when it got to us, the cardboard would literally just crumble in our hands; I remember one time dealing with about half a ton of loose vegetables, which to this day, I have never managed to identify - They looked like small potatoes, but they had stripes - Some people say it was probably just potatoes covered in a lot of soil, but I doubt that seriously as if that were the case, HMRC would have seized them as a biosecurity risk and had them cleaned. 

As for the clothes [this is one of my favourite anecdotes], we used to handle a lot of stuff for 2 major retail chains, H&M, and Primark. Primark, for those outside of Europe, is a discount clothing chain over here that's pretty massive, and for the money you pay, their stuff is often pretty decent, although there is a lot of debate surrounding their position as a 'fast fashion' retailer. That said, being on a student budget, they work as a good option for me ^_^.

Anyway, one evening we had a mass-consignment from Burma/Myanmar of Harry Potter t-shirts, going of course, to Primark. I remember we had about 4 aircraft 'skids' [very flat pallets made of sheet-metal with attachments for cargo nets, designed to be slid into aircraft holds] full of these - Bear in mind, these skids were about the same size [as in, you could probably park one of these on it] as a small city car, like a Nissan Micra, and the stacks of boxes were approximately 10 high - If I recall, there was somewhere near 2000 boxes of these shirts across the 4 skids.

I went home that morning [I worked night shifts, 6pm-6am], slept during the day, then as was my custom, went into Central London the following evening to a video game arcade I liked to hang out at near Oxford Street, London's main shopping district, and home to the biggest Primark in London. I popped into Primark after I was done gaming to pick up an extra t-shirt, and was honestly rather proud to see the staff filling a large display rack with several boxes of the very same Harry Potter shirts that I had been unloading only about 12 hours beforehand - It was pretty surreal, but very satisfying lol :)  

Anyway, enough reminiscing for now lol :D I currently work in speciality chemicals while trying to hammer out the details of a PhD application at the same university i've been at these last [technically] 5 years accounting for delays in starting my Masters degree, so my brief stint in aviation feels like a long distant memory haha ^_^. I'd say I should have gone into railway logistics given my obvious love for all things railways, but I guess I made up for that with my stint as a cleaner on Britain's only 140mph bullet trains, so yeah :D
Been building Plarail worlds since 2001; still building in 2021 - Not bad really  :cool:
[-] The following 1 user Likes Plarail Man UK's post:
  • Mister No
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#18
I bet you aren't a one finger keyboard typer like I am T-Man. 😆 How many words a minute can you type?
[Image: super-smiley-emoticon.gif]
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#19
Last I checked, about 50-60?

I had to have a typing check when I began University to confirm if I was eligible for a state-funded laptop for work [mainly because I find typing easier and quicker than writing], so the check was to see if I was faster typing than writing. I admit, I can write by hand, and pretty well too, but yeah. Turns out most people at UK universities type anyway, but they bring their own laptops - Mine being state-funded was part of an additional support package I recieve seperately to everyone else.

Anyway, IIRC that was my score, I've been known to put out over 1000 words per hour for the purposes of essays, although that includes the time to think before I type, so make of that what you will - I rarely time myself when typing other stuff lol, but I assume I probably get more out per hour when typing something that i've already thought out, as opposed to on-the-fly :).
Been building Plarail worlds since 2001; still building in 2021 - Not bad really  :cool:
[-] The following 1 user Likes Plarail Man UK's post:
  • Super
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#20
Thats about 40 or 50 more words per minute than I can muster P-Man 😒
[Image: super-smiley-emoticon.gif]
[-] The following 1 user Likes Super's post:
  • Plarail Man UK
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