I am in the process of transferring my domain names from my current registrar (Loopia) to Amazon Route 53. Since Loopia do not support ALIAS records I have used DNSimple on the side. My hope is to avoid managing my domains with multiple services.

Since I already use many other Amazon Web Services, Route 53 felt like a good choice.

I have registered two domain names for my personal website:

  • richardkall.se (primary)
  • richardkäll.se (forwarded)

While trying to set up richardkäll.se in Amazon Route 53, I got the following error message (when creating a hosted zone):

The hosted zone could not be saved because:

– Domain Name contains invalid characters or is in an invalid format.

Route 53 - Create hosted zone

Domain names that contain special, non-ASCII characters (for example, the Swedish ä) are called Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs).

Apparently Route 53 does not support IDNs in its UTF-8 format, you need to convert it to ASCII first. I used the IDN Punycode converter which turned richardkäll.se into xn--richardkll-x5a.se. Entering this domain in Amazon Route 53 worked perfectly.