While getting onaholes as an alien living in Japan is pretty easy, cheap and fast, things get a bit more complicated when you’re not living in Japan.
Depending on your situation, your options are:
- buying the products from a Japanese shop shipping internationally (with slower or more expensive shipping, and possible import duties and customs fees)
- buying the products from a locally implanted shop (at a significant price bump)
- bringing back “souvenirs” from your pilgrimage to Japan (with the awkwardness during luggage checks at the airports)
- buying “undercover” at eBay or second-hand reseller
The thorn in the shoe being that all onaholes (including more shady ones) are sold on Amazon Japan, at unbeatable prices, sold and shipped by Amazon.co.jp (not marketplace items), with free shipping for orders over ¥ 2000, and… you can save 10% to 15% by subscribing to products and receiving a fresh new onahole each month (that’s convenient for limited use products such as Tenga cups).
Dipping toe inside sexual wellness
As with all Amazon websites, getting to the erotica category is sometimes a bit of a maze, so here you go:
Oh, if you prefer English text instead of Japanese:
A swift click on “Yes” takes you past the curtain into the adult world. Well despite this, many things are not translated. But you can easily guess the various categories: “most popular”, “newest arrivals”, “top sellers in category X”, …
Feel free to take a look around, the variety of adult products is huge even when you restrict to “Prime-available only” or “Sold by Amazon.co.jp”. For example: kawaii nipple vibrators, the blowjob machine you dreamed about, “Smart Boy” condoms with a bald eagle on the box, and the cutest clit sucker ever
The onahole realm
On Amazon, there’s no such thing as “onahole” (romanized). Instead, you’ll get to the “Sex Sleeves Hole” category. And to save you the trouble of finding the correct menu item:
Just a quick quote:
1-32 of over 6,000 results for Health & Personal Care : Sexual Wellness : Hole
With the fast pace of new product release, you could well use one new onahole each day and you would never run out of new toys to use during your entire lifetime.
The current bestsellers are:
And those prices… If you’re luckily living in Japan, you can get a very recommended toy such as La Bocca Della Verità for 2255 JPY and free shipping. That’s 20.22 USD at current rates. Best alternative is OtonaJP with 23 USD, and you immediately reach 30 USD with a foreign shop such as CoolMST, Toydemon or Motsutoys shipping not included.
Of course, it is very tempting to put plenty toys in the cart, register, proceed to checkout.
But until not so long ago, upon reaching the shipping address and order review, you got a “Some items can’t be shipped to the selected address” kind of message. Effectively, no “sexual wellness” products could be shipped by Amazon outside Japan, regardless of the other country’s import restrictions on such goods.
One possibility is to use a forwarding service such as Tenso or Yokatta or Big in Japan : Amazon delivers to their facility, where the package gets repackaged, and shipped anew to the final destination. Of course, at a price: processing and shipping.
And then there’s customs: it can be a rough ride importing an adult product with as illustration a character with child-like appearance, and many countries can have subjective regulations against importing “obscene goods”.
And if that’s cleared, comes one hurdle that’s not easy to avoid: import fees. See, packages must mention the value of the content. And this varies widely among countries. While trade between EU countries is tax/duty free (yay Schengen), Japan just so happens to not be an EU country, and this sucks because for example France:
- applies VAT (20%) and generally starting 25 € in value (so, at least 5 € VAT to pay)
- if the above happens, then there are processing fees (adding about 10 €)
- and starting 150 € of value, there are import duties applied on top
In my experience, shipping gets through smooth for small packets shipped in SAL or Airmail and whose value is below ~100 € (that’s about 3 average size onaholes). Faster shipping options such as EMS are almost guaranteed hit by VAT payment requirement, and this can as well mean giving money to the delivery guy than having to send out a check to Roissy customs service so the packet gets unlocked. In the end, it can take more time than the slow SAL/Airmail shipping option.
All those little pesky details I kept in mind, as I was suddenly noticing Amazon Japan didn’t seem to block international shipping of adult products anymore…
Amazon Global shipping, doing the math
So here you are, cart filled with colorful goods, proceeding to checkout. Shipping method: “AmazonGlobal International Shipping”. You really thought free shipping applied to international shipping? Of course not. (not yet? hyperloop please).
It’s usually not too hefty, the shipping for your usual onahole order should float at 10-30 $.
Good, quick look at the grand total, and…. ow.
To sum up: for 28.33 EUR of toys, there’s 11.52 EUR shipping, and whooping 87.65 EUR import fees deposit.
I’ll link you to the Amazon international shipping terms & conditions, who explain what is this about: by placing the order, you mandate Amazon to handle import fees in your stead, and to do this they ask you to make a deposit of the expected possible fees. What remains from the deposit is then reimbursed about 60 days later.
And this is why I make this post now, for an order dated 11 February: Amazon confirmed me the 4th April the amount of the deposit that will be refunded.
Only 8.33 EUR of import fees, that wasn’t too harsh. The total cost gets at 48.18 EUR, which makes it a viable onahole buying option.
Even more so since now it correctly estimates the import fees deposit?
See, for Bocca Della Verità the Amazon option amounts to 33,80 EUR (not counting the import fees deposit refund) for delivery next week, whereas the cheapest alternative is OtonaJP with cheapest SAL shipping (4-8 weeks) and the small discount with SEPA transfer payment, not counting possible import fees:
So, that was the adventure 🙂
Specific warnings about Amazon
Now before you go into an onahole buying frenzy on Amazon.co.jp, a few words of caution:
As much as possible, pick products that mention “Ships from and sold by Amazon.co.jp.”. That way, you have the guarantee it comes in an Amazon box, and if a refund is necessary it’s the Amazon customer service that can handle it all. Also, I expect Amazon to do better origin control when it stocks products than third-party sellers who use Amazon for shipment or just payment processor. It’s not a guarantee against counterfeit products, they’re just less likely in a flooded local market where original products are already so cheap. In that respect, it’s not as safe as buying from a reputable sexshop such as OtonaJP or Motsutoys.
While the Amazon box may provide a bit of privacy/deniability upon arrival at the family house for your “Health & personal care item”, and the package may be not put into as much scrutiny by customs, it’s still a bit of a devil’s pact: Amazon is a huge global corporation gathering all private data it can, and you’re possibly unwilling to feed Amazon’s algorithms with your adult toy buying habits.
And more generally speaking, increasingly relying on Amazon for various services (online buying, photo storage, cloud computing, groceries delivery, video on demand, Alexa, ebooks, Twitch, …) cuts off potential competitors from revenues or opportunities, effectively putting Amazon into a monopolistic position.
So please, only buy products from Amazon.co.jp if they are not available in smaller shops such as OtonaJP, CoolMST, Motsutoys, Toydemon, … Thanks 💕