Tuesday, January 22, 2013

[Your Question] What kind of address will I have in Okinawa?

I received a question today from someone wanting to know about what type of address they would have when they come to Okinawa. Seeing as how this is a really great question I decided not to wait until Fan Mail Friday and post a response right away here on the blog. 

There are two types of addresses that you can get if you move to Okinawa. The first is for military member and anyone who works for the US government and the second is for everyone else. Each of these addresses are unique so let's talk about them. 

Military and US Government Workers

One of the perks of your job is having an APO or FPO box. These are United States Post Offices which are operating on military installations within Okinawa. You will be issued a box number and have the ability to send and receive mail as though you were still in the United States. This makes it easier to send and receive items from friends and family. There are some down sides, however. Packages can take longer to arrive then they would in the US and are not tracked once they reach the military's hub in California which can be frustrating sometimes. You may also find that not all of your favorite online companies will ship to APO/FPO addresses. 

This is what your address will look like: 

PSC 00 Box 00000  APO, AP 00000


PSC 00 Box 00000 FPO, AP 00000

Everyone Else

The rest of us who are here in Okinawa have a different kind of address. For all intensive purposes this address works the same as the way an address in the US would work only the country is Japan. You can order from stores online, ship internationally to your address and do all the great things that people will addresses do. The down side is that if you are sending or receiving something from friends and family it will be a bit more costly. 

This is what your address will look like: 

Okinawa-ken, Ginowan-shi, Ōyama, 0丁目0−00

Of course the town and city would change. You also would see your address in kanji rather than in the roman alphabet which in the above case would look like this: 
沖縄県、宜野湾市, 大山, 0丁目0−00

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