The long drive yesterday made it hard to get up today, but with such a short trek to Shanghai, it was important to make contact at the Container office. There is a morning office at the shipping company I have found that will take me and the camper to Japan, and I need to complete any paperwork they need from me.
There are hundreds of container shipping services all over the world, and Shanghai happens to be the biggest port in China, and the third largest port in the world. If I am going to find a passage to Japan, it probably starts here. Ships sailing from Shanghai voyage to some 500 ports in over 160 countries and regions all over the world. Due to the slow speed, some long-distance sea routes have been closed. However, the quantity of the goods moved in and out of Shanghai port ranks highly among the world’s major ports. Passenger transportation through Shanghai port is also very busy.
I intend to take the ship from Shanghai to Hakata port, but the ship doesn’t leave until Tuesday morning, so I get a long weekend in Shanghai. There are not as many services that take both the cargo and the passenger on the same ship, so this fits very well.
In order to meet the rules of the transport, my little camper has to be delivered to the shipping office very early Monday morning and put into the container. I will then travel as a paying customer and will have a small cabin on the ship until Hiroshima, where we will both be put ashore. Container shipping is not cheap, but for this leg of the trip, there is no alternative. For instance, a person travelling aboard one of these monsters costs around US$80 – 120 per day. I should be in Japan on Thursday 29th March.
So I get a few days to sit back, discover great things about Shanghai, and look into the history of this fascinating city.