Information in the Wild Week 6: Signs at the Local Post Office (Daily Update 9am PST)

Week Six!! If you don’t know what’s happening, main post here.
Links to the previous weeks can be found in the main post also.

  • Tldr: Quick daily practice of using real Japanese to understand and acquire information. The focus being on understanding what is being conveyed sufficiently to interact with or respond to it.

This week will be the last week of the initial wave. There will be a second wave but I will need to double check and organize the materials I have. If you are in Japan or will be going to Japan and would like to contribute pictures, please don’t hesitate to PM me. An airport or hotel theme may be interesting.

This week we will be headed to a local post office. It seems that there is a lot more going on than just sending mail. Let’s see what kind of signs we come across.

Day 1:

Since it turns out you needed more cash than you thought so you have been looking for an ATM. A nice おばあさん pointed you to the post office which you weren’t really sure about at first but near the entrance you encounter this sign. It says ATM on it so you should probably read what it says.

Is the sign relevant to you? If so, what is it asking you to do?

Day 2:

Since you were already here, you remember you needed to get postage stamps and one of those sticker things for recycling appliances. You see people walking in and taking a slip of paper by this sign.

Is it applicable to you? If so, what do you need to do to buy the postage stamps and recycling sticker?

Day 3:

While you’re waiting outside you see this sign, may not have anything to do with you but you recognize the words 禁止 so should probably read it just in case.

What does the sign say? Is it relevant to you?

Day 4:

After a bunch of waiting you finally make it to the ATM. You see this sign, what is it telling you?

Day 5:

Waiting for your turn with the number slip in hand, you look around and this sign catches your eye. Can you tell what it is for? Who do you think will use this service?

Hint: 二次元コード

This means a 2 direction barcode. QR code is a type of 二次元コード.

Day 6:

A sign by the previous one, it looks like it has something to do with the label printing machine in step 3. What is it about and what is okay and not okay to do?

Day 7:

Still not your turn so your attention drifts to this sign, seems like it could be important since it is a notice from the JP Post.

  • What is the general message or your general understanding of this?
    (This is quite long so if you feel it’s too much text, just read the bold print and whatever catches your eye)

Six weeks finished! Hope everybody found this enjoyable and useful, I certainly learnt at least a few words that I haven’t seen before. Again if you have any feedback at all, please leave a msg on any of the threads or PM directly. Especially if there is something you really liked so I don’t change it unknowingly.

Week 7 will start after a week break on Jan 30th

Check in if you’re participating this week

  • Yes
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Sample Answers (Updated the following day)

Day 1

Yes it is and it is telling you to line up outside if you want to use the ATM.

Day 2
  • For the postage stamps you don’t need a number ticket and just need line up for the service window by the entrance
  • For the recycling sticker though, you will need one
Day 3
  • Please do not park your bicycle in front of entrance of the post office or the mailbox
Day 4
  • Please remember to take your cash card or receipt
Day 5
  • It’s a sign to tell people the step by step process for printing a shipping label as part of the “e発送” delivery service.
  • It seems to be a service mainly for sellers on marketplace platforms and auction sites.
Day 6
  • It is instructions for taking your label from the machine
  • You are asked to take it by holding it with both hands and ripping it by lifting it from the left side.
  • You are asked not to pull the label
Day 7

The big bold print at the top:

  • Do not deposit money into accounts of people you don’t know
  • Do not give money or your cash and to someone you don’t know
  • Do not send cash in letter packages or box packages


The notice seems to be for scam prevention. The rest of the text gives some examples of possible ways a scammer may go about it and some suggested countermeasures and precautions.

Suggested format for posting your answers
Will make it easier to distinguish from questions and discussions


Thank you for another week in the wild @ThousandJP !

Day one


Customers using the ATM

We’d ask you to line up outside


Could customers wanting to use the ATM please line up outside, not inside, the Post Office.

Day two

Difficult one today! I was enjoying last week’s easier signs, but now it’s back to some hard work! Anyway….

What do I need to do to buy postage stamps and a recycling sticker?

At first glance, I’d say I don’t need to do anything. Tickets are just for the two main headings:

貯金 - ちょきん - savings
保険 - ほけん - insurance

But, straining my eyes, and ignoring all that dense kanji, I do spot this:

household appliance recycling coupons

And then, in the red writing underneath, I recognise a couple of kanji I know:

切手 - きって - stamp/s
葉書 - はがき - postcard/s

Looks like I need to take a numbered ticket for the queue after all.

Day three


駐輪 - ちゅうりん - parking one’s bicycle
禁止 - きんし - prohibition

No bicycle parking

郵便局出入口 とポスト前に は駐輪しないで下さい

郵便局 - ゆうびんきょく - Post Office
出入口 - でいりぐち - exit and entrance
と - particle
ポスト - postbox
前に - まえに - in front of
は - topic particle
駐輪 - ちゅうりん - parking one’s bicycle
しないで下さい - しないでください - please don’t

Please don’t park bicycles in front of the Post Office entrance or postbox

I came on foot today, so, phew, another sign I can ignore!

Day four


キャッシュカード - cashcard
明細 - めいさい - details
票 - ひょう - ticket, tag
の - particle
取り - とり - take
忘れに - わすれに - forget
ご注意 - ごちゅうい - caution
ください - please

Please don’t forget to take your cash card and statement

Phew, today’s sentence was very easy to understand, but the grammar (取り忘れ etc) and the kanji (明細票) was a nightmare!

Day five

Can you tell what it is for? Who do you think will use this service?

So far, until now, I’ve tried to approach all these wonderful challenges as if relying on the words alone. But today I’m tired and, to be honest, not in the mood to study, and I’m going to use my experience of living here to help me out.

In the past few years it has become more and more difficult to send things abroad. Once upon a time I could just stick stuff in a box, write an address on it, take it to the Post Office, and bingo, off it goes!

Now the staff get really fussy about the right look to the box or packet, about a detailed list of contents and values, and now there’s a new thing… you have to print off the label. I was able to do this once in the Post Office itself, with a lot of kind help, but you are supposed to do it at home on your computer, get a QR code and then use the machine in the Post Office to print the label.

That’s what this looks like here.

Translating the text, it looks different:


かんたん - simple; easy; uncomplicated
送り状発行 - おくりじょうはっこう - invoice issuing system (Thanks for putting me onto Weblio @ThousandJP !)

It sounds like something only business people would use (what use do I have for invoices??), but I’ve had to use this machine when sending snacks to family as presents. And it says かんたん, but it gave me a right headache. I suppose if you do it often it’s easy enough, but I’ve now stopped sending anything at all. If a family memeber back home has a birthday, or it’s Christmas or something, no more parcels from Japan, I now order something direct from Amazon UK and by-pass all this trouble!

Day six


手前 - てまえ - before oneself; in front of one
に - direction particle
引っ張らない - ひっぱらない - negative form of to pull; to draw; to pull tight
でください - please

Please don’t yank it out of the machine!

Day seven

Wow, this one is really tough! I sometimes laugh at the amount of cartoons on Japanese posters, but at least they help me understand what is going on! Here, not a single hint! In real life, I’d just ignore this poster, but today I’m going to tackle the headings at least…


Don’t transfer any funds!

Don’t hand anything over!

Don’t post anything!

Ah, yes, a poster warning people of scams! Of which there are far too many in Japan!

Day 1

It is saying that to use the ATM please line up outside, so the people that are going to use the post office window and the ones using the ATM don’t get mixed up.

Day 2

For the recycling sticker, you need to take a number. But for the postage stamps you dont have to, just line up on the post office window that is next to the exit/entrance door.

Day 3

Please dont park your bicycle in front of the post office door or postbox.

Day 4

Don’t forget to take your cash card and invoice.

Day 1

Yes there is an ATM here you can use.
However, you need to line up outside to prevent spread of coronavirus and avoid confusion with customers using tje post office

Day 2

A lot of kanji I needed to look up, but I don’t need to take a number to get the postage stamps , just line up near the entrance for the postal counter.

Day 3

Something about vehicles, but turns out ‘parking ones bicycle’ is a single noun :face_with_monocle:
Fortunately I didn’t park my bike in front of the post office entrance or post boxes, as it is prohibited.

Looking back at yesterdays, it seems I forgot my recycling tag, so I need to go back inside anyway and take a number…

Day 4

Please be careful not to forget your cash card and invoice

Day 5

For people using a market service to sell stuff?
The sign describes easy printing of invoice/consignment notes by scanning the barcode from your app, printing it, then attaching to your item and taking it to the counter.

There was a few words I couldn’t understand (always is), but were difficult to look up and put together to make sense of what it was saying.


Thank you for another week of fun exercises @ThousandJP! I think a hotel or airport theme would be a lot of fun!

Day 1

ATM Customers

Please line up outside.

Currently, in order to prevent the widespread infection of Corona virus and relieve crowding/congestion to customers lined up to use the (post) office counter, customers using the ATM should please wait outside.

We apologize for the inconvenience and request your understanding and cooperation.

Kodaira Station Square Post Office

The sign IS relevant to me! It says I should line up outside if I need to use the ATM. Though it’s not quite clear if the ATM is also outside. だけど見ればわかると思います。

Day 2


Procedures Regarding Savings Accounts
Bank Transfer • Sending Money • Payments • All kinds of/Various Payments
Postal/Flat Fee Money Orders • Money Orders
Home Appliance Recycling Tickets


受付時間 9:00〜16:00
Reception 9am - 4pm
Customers using the savings or insurance windows/counters, please take a numbered ticket.

Those sending mail, or purchasing stamps, postcards, or revenue stamps, please line up at the window/counter by the entrance/exit without taking a numbered ticket.

Numbered Ticket

For the recycling ticket I will need to take a numbered ticket for the savings/insurance counter. For the stamps, I don’t need a ticket and have to wait on the line for the postal counter by the entrance/exit.

*It seems to me that there’s only a line for the mail/stamps because it doesn’t say customers should line up for the savings/insurance window, only that they should take a ticket and wait for their number to be called.

Day 3

No Parking!

Please do not park in front of the post office entrance or mailbox.

Kodaira Station Square Post Office

*After checking my work, I see that 駐輪 refers to bicycle parking and not just generic parking.

Day 4

Take care not to forget your cash card and statement/receipt.

In accordance with the law, we do not handle cash payments exceeding 100,000 yen. (Excluding payments to national and local governments.)

Day 5

eInvoice Service Correspondence

Easily Print and Issue Invoices!


  1. Display the QR Code
    Display the auction site or flea market app QR code.

Read the QR Code
Scan the QR code. (Literal: Hold the scanner over the QR code.)

Invoice Issuing
Invoice will be issued.

For invoices, please affix the shipping label to your package before approaching the window/counter.

*I initially put stamp instead of shipping label. The phrase 送り状発行 was a bit confusing to me until I read some of this page: https://クラウドトーマス.jp/column/1577/

Day 6

How To Take/Tear Off a Label

Holding the back/farthest end of the label with both hands, twist up from the left side.

Please do not pull the label toward you.

Day 7

Do not transfer! Into a stranger’s account!

Don’t give! Money or cash cards to strangers!

Do not send! Cash in letter or mail packs!

Is that telephone okay?!

Someone claiming to be a son or grandson…
[Changed phone number]
[Left my bag on the train]
[Was caught embezzling company money]
[Prepare to take out money]

There is no way to get back money taken out from the ATM.

Someone pretending to be a tax official, pension officer, or municipal employee…
[There is a medical bill refund]
[Call when you arrive at the ATM]

Be careful of people saying “It’s definitely profitable!”

「あなたの名前を貸して *名義貸しは違法です!*」
Someone pretending to be offering deals related to private equity, bonds, or foreign currency…
[Guaranteed price increase, definitely profitable]
[Your previous investment will be returned]
[Let me use your name --Name lending is illegal!–]
[Send money]


  • 息子さんやお孫さんを名乗って電話でお金を求めてきたら、以前連絡した息子さんやお孫さんの元の電話番号に連絡して確認!
  • 知らない人がお金の話をしてきたら、ご家族や信頼できる人に相談!
  • 他人にキャシュカードを渡したり、暗証番号を教えたりしない!
  • ATM 引き出し上限額を引き下げる! (ATMで簡単にできます)
    Things you can do:
  • If someone claiming to be your son or grandson calls asking for money, contact your son or grandson using their phone number and confirm!
  • If a stranger is talking to you about money, get advice from your family or a trusted friend!
  • Don’t give strangers your cash card or PIN number!
  • Limit the amount of money you withdraw from the ATM (You can easily do it using the ATM)

JP Post Post Office

*Wow this one was tough. I got the general idea right away, but I wanted to challenge myself and tried to translate the whole thing. It took me an hour. Surprisingly I was actually able to read almost all of it. I did use Google translate (for some of the parts under the blue headings and the part at the bottom) to help make it sound more natural in English. It was nice that thanks to WaniKani, even if I didn’t know some of the words, I was still able to have a general idea of what they meant because I knew the kanji.

Day 1

TLDR: People wanting to use the ATM should wait (lit. “line up”) outside.

The longer explanation:
To prevent the spread of the new coronavirus, the lines in the postal office should not be too crowded (congested).
Customers using the ATM should wait outside in order to prevent said congestion.

Day 2

This one was quite hard, maybe because it had like 80% kanji I didn’t know and hardly any kana…
As such, I’m still not too sure about what it really said.

Apparently though, we do need to get a ticket for recycling stickers.
For postage stamps, we’ll just have to line up by the entrance.

Day 3

This funky font messed with my OCR.
I had to isolate kanji at times.

Anyway, compared to Day 2 this one was quite easy.

It’s a sign that tells us “No bicycle parking”.
Specifically though, one shouldn’t park their bike in front of the postbox and/or the mail office entrance.

Day 4

Please be careful not to forget your card and receipts.
(Had to google around a bit for 明細表 to be honest, I guess this word can mean a few things.)

Day 5

I could make out that this have been step-by-step instructions on how to print out some sort of label, but couldn’t make out for what purpose.
(I didn’t even know what sort of label you’d get, but I guess it’s for some ‘auction house’…?)

Day 6

These are instructions on how to take out the printed label.
It tells you that you should take out the label by lifting up the left side of it.
(I assume this way you can cut out the label as well)

What you shouldn’t do is ‘pull’ it out of the machine.

Day 7

Indeed quite a lot of text, but all of this appears to be scam warnings.

The big bold text at the top advises you to not do the following:

  • Don’t transfer money to strangers.
  • Don’t give money (physical)/cash cards to strangers.
  • Don’t mail letterbags (?), cash, ‘Yu-Pack’ (no idea)

Quick tip for looking up words, you can type “______ 英語” into your search engine and a lot of times you will get results where a Japanese person is looking for answers in English. Look for the links from eikawa.dmm since they usually have multiple answers from different English Teachers.

明細書って英語でなんて言うの? - DMM英会話なんてuKnow?

For 取り忘れ, when the “masu stem” is connected to another verb like that you can try looking it up as one verb.

「取り忘れる」の英語・英語例文・英語表現 - Weblio和英辞書

These two websites will give you much better results than jisho


This is my take on this without looking up any words :laughing: I may be way off

Day 1

This sign is for people who are here for the ATM, it’s asking them to make a line outside so it doesn’t get crowded. I can go in.

Day 2

I don’t have to take a number. For mail I’d have to go somewhere else? Probably have to leave this room and stand in line somewhere

Day 3

There’s something I’m not supposed to do. I think it’s talking about parking, so it wouldn’t apply to me.

Day 4

I don’t know what it says, I’ll just follow the arrow

Day 5

It’s giving me instructions to print a shipping lable for my package before giving it to the staff. If I want to mail something I guess I’d do it.


Thank you so much! I’ve never used either of them before, but I’ll give them a try! Much appreciated! Thank you!


Certainly did!

I’m really pleased with myself for completing the challenge each day, and though I can’t say I actually added any new words or anything to my Japanese (my brain doesn’t seem to work like that) I got better and better at:

(a) scanning for basic meaning in a hurry
(b) using the tools at my disposal to get to a translation (I never knew how good Google Translate was before)
(c) approaching written text with confidence, a skill which is already having a real-life effect

So thank you so much @ThousandJP for these six weeks! I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say how much I appreciate all the effort that went into creating these challenges! Thank you! It’s been a lot of fun!


@ThousandJP thank you for another great week! I definitely preferred the signs that with larger font sizes that were easier for me to read. I liked that there was a lot of new vocabulary and that the signs were not always walls of text. It might be cool if you pulled out a few vocabulary words that folks may not know, sort of like “this week you will learn the following words…” (There were a lot of those on today’s sign, like 名乗る and 値上がり.) Doing the weekly themes was great for this because I kept seeing the same words, and I learn best by doing.

I think the best part was how I felt comfortable approaching the material and not worrying so much about catching every nuance and translating every word perfectly (like you have to do on a test or with SRS). It’s nice being able to look at these and think “Oh I can try to read this” instead of “OMG there’s so much here I don’t understand I can’t do it.” And if I look back over my post history for the past weeks, I can see all the hard work I’ve done right there in black and white.

See everyone next week!


I too wanted to thank you @ThousandJP for taking the time to host these threads!
Although I didn’t actively participate every week, I did try to understand all the signs you photographed.

This has been a great opportunity to apply what I’ve learned so far.
The feeling of encountering stuff you just learned on Bunpro has been very gratifying.

Unfortunately, it has also shown me all too clear that I won’t achieve good comprehension until I’ve dug deeper into kanji hell :upside_down_face:.


Thank you for doing this :+1:
While I couldnt understand some of them it was nice to be able to use what Ive learnt and see some more common words that I should probably learn if I ever go to Japan


Thanks for the kind words and sharing the different ways the activity has worked for you.

Just want to take the chance to give an anonymous shoutout to all the people that have help with pictures. You know who you are.