“Can anyone recommend a moving service in Tokyo to mover from Japan to the US? ….books, but not a lot of stuff.”
For books–the “M-BAG”
The cheapest method for shipping books and “media” is the “M-bag”— Printed Materials Postage, Surface Mail. Go to the counter of a Japanese district post office and ask for the the biggest capacity “M-Bag.” If they look at you like you’re from another planet, use the Japanese name for M-Bag, Tokubetsu Yutai/特別郵袋, or just go to a larger post office.
An M-Bag is a fairly big, heavy duty canvas bag with a drawstring. You can stuff it absolutely full of books, printer-created material, media such as CDs/DVDs/BR and software counts as “printed matter” also. The bag is big enough to put a dead spouse into, if need be. :)
Learn more about the cost of shipping of “Printed Matter (Books / Magazines), Mailing large quantity, printed matter in special mailbags) at the official Japan Post website:
I recommend putting materials in a longish box, then putting the box inside the official M-Bag. The M-Bag will take about 4-6 weeks to get to Western part of the US, and the rate is significantly lower than shipping the books by any other means…less than 5,000yen.
M-Bag Shipment: When shipped in an M-Bag, first pack the books in a box with an address label. The box is then placed in a separate mail bag addressed to the addressee on a tag attached to the bag. The postage is the same if the box weights anywhere between 4 and 11 pounds and then increases with weights beyond 11 pounds. M-Bags may be either standard (surface mail) or Air Mail M-Bags.