Monthly Archives: September 2011

We Now Offer SAL Shipping

As the continuing rise of the Japanese yen has put more and more pressure on prices, we have decided to add a new shipping option. SAL stands for Surface, Air, Land and means that packages are transported by air from Japan to your country, but by land within the country. In the U.S. for example, this would mostly affect those living further away from the west coast or areas that don’t have direct flights from Japan.

Like Airmail, SAL is only cheaper than EMS for packages that weigh 2kg or less, using what Japan Post call the “small packet rate.” So for orders that add up to a packed weight of more than 2kg, you will see only the EMS rate offered in the checkout. This will help avoid customers choosing to pay more for the slower shipping method (yes, it has happened!).

We hope this cheaper option will help offset the cost of shipping the items you need halfway across the world.

Wedding Rush

Tanaka Kei, Hoshino Mari, Sugimoto Aya

Following this week’s engagement announcement by enka star Kobayashi Sachiko (57), there has been a mini-rush of other wedding news. Actor Tanaka Kei (27, photo left) and talento Sakura (28) announced yesterday that they got hitched on August 31. Sakura is currently five months pregnant and plans to take maternity leave once filming finishes for the NTV drama series “Bull Doctor.” She and Tanaka started dating after they worked together on the spring 2010 Fuji TV series “Massuguna Otoko.”

Meanwhile actress Hoshino Mari (30, photo center) announced yesterday that she had married TBS announcer Takano Takahiro (31). The two started dating while both were students at Aoyama Gakuin University. They chose yesterday as their wedding day for two reasons – it was an auspicious “taian” day on the traditional calendar; and it was the birthday of Takano’s late father. The couple currently have no plans for a wedding ceremony or reception.

And talento/actress Sugimoto Aya (43, photo right) held a brief press conference to talk about her marriage to a company vice president (41). The two got hitched on April 17 after living together for eight years and had known each other for 13. Sugimoto cited the national mood after the Great East Japan Earthquake in March for the delay in announcing the happy news. Sugimoto was previously married from 1992 to 2003 to musician Numata Toshinori (49).