New Year in Japan: Lucky bag, FUKUBUKURO 福袋!

Happy New Year 2013 everybody!

I hope you all had a wonderful countdown to the new year and a great holiday! I had a great dinner on the 31st and a count down at Minato mirai, Yokohama where they had a small firework at Cosmo square! 🙂


Short countdown video here 🙂

My holiday is 9 days this time and after the countdown, the fun is nowhere near over. New year in Japan is the time for the biggest sale of the year and the annual shoppers-attractive promotion called “Lucky bag” or Fukubukuro in Japanese. This lucky bag first started in Matsuzakaya department store in Ginza. Each shop would put a lot of stuff in a bag and sell in cheaper price than normal. For example, for clothes- 5,000 yen for 6 items, which the real price would actually be around 25,000 yen. The customers cannot know what is inside except some stores that tells people the content of the items but people have no chance to choose color or types.

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Every year, people line up for these bags, sometimes even before the stores open. This year, I also joined the crowd. I shopped for some stuff I need which were on huge sale on January 1st. Most stores sell Fukubukuro on January 2nd-3rd. So, on 1st night, I searched for the stores list at a mall close to my place, then how many bags they sell, price, opening time, item details, etc. The mall I was planning to gave out fukubukuro catalog! After choosing the store I want to get the lucky bag, I went to bed early so that I can wake up early to line up for one! I went to Sotetsu Joinus in Yokohama around 9:10 (the mall opened at 9) and ran to the store I wanted a lucky bag. Turned out that I wasn’t early at all. I couldn’t get a waiting ticket for the shop I wanted so I gave up that one and went to another store. 🙂

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I got a 5,250 yen lucky bag from a clothing store. They offered another bigger bag sold at 10,500 yen as well. Inside the bag, there are five items! One coat, knitted sweater, scarf, and two shirts. It was worth it! 😀
Then, I also got a lucky bag from Bodyshop as well. Then a few stuff on sale and then I was out. Got tired from waiting in line for cashiers and decided to take a rest with my friends. 🙂
All of the stores have a really good deal on new year and lucky bag is just fun!!!

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These days every shops offer Fukubukuro. From clothes and shoes to snacks, cosmetics, and so many others. Even Apple has a lucky bag! I heard it is a great deal but people started lining up since the day before. Next year, I’ll try to go line up for Apple too! From the sources I read, it was 33,000 yen and the bag contains so many cool expensive stuff, even iPad or even a MacBook Air for some lucky people! Click here to read more about Apple lucky bag.

If you don’t like lucky bag and rather see the stuff for yourself before buying it, I recommend that this is still the best time of the year to shop. Everything is on sale! All the stores have a great deal during New Year. But…beware that there are loads of people out shopping during this time of the year, so make sure you sleep and eat enough- much energy needed. 😉

My 2013 started in a very happy holiday mode! I am enjoying my holiday a lot and sincerely hoping that this year will be a much better, brighter, and  happier year for me and for you all as well!
My best wishes to you!


2 replies »

  1. Ah, Sotetsu Joinus. I go through there every Monday on my way to and from work. I’ve never tried a fukubukuro. I usually just buy exactly what I want 🙂

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