The New Year has started and we are back at JapanSauce.Net with more news about all the cool things in Japan. Today we are talking about New Year’s Lucky Bags!
Lucky Bags or fukubukuro (福袋) are a Japanese New Year custom in which many stores sell sealed shopping bags that are a fixed price and contain many different items, such as clothes, food, electronics, and other cool merchandise. But you don’t know what’s inside until you buy it. So you are either “lucky” or not. But don’t worry, these bags are sold at a discount, so it lessens the risk!
Fukubukuro combines the word fuku (“good fortune”) and bukuro (“bag”) to form “lucky bag”. These bags were originally invented by the Ginza Matsuya Department store back in the Meiji era, and now everyone from Starbucks and Apple have joined the craze.
People begin forming lines beginning January 1st just so that they can get a chance at some of the limited number of bags, and things can get real hectic. It’s sort of like Black Friday in America.
Here are some of the Lucky Bags, and what’s inside, courtesy of Rocket News 24:
The Starbucks Luck Bag for 2017 cost 6,000 yen (US$51.35), and comes with the following items:
- Four drink vouchers for a beverage of any size—worth 610 yen each (US$5.21). That’s a value of 2440 yen (US$20.86)
- Two packs of Starbucks ground coffee beans
- Three personal drip coffee bags
- Two stackable drink mugs
- Four-piece Demitasse Set, with two espresso cups and two plates, with the Starbucks logo
- And of course, the Starbucks tote bag with the Starbucks logo
The McDonald’s Lucky Bag cost 3,000 yen (US$25.56). The price is a bit more expensive than their dollar menu, but don’t worry because you got all this cool stuff:
- COPUONS! With about 3,270 yen (US$27.95) worth of discounts—which have to be used by February 28th
- Carry bag with the golden fries design
- Soft cushion of fries
- Small blanket of fries (you can see there is a “fries” theme)
- Box of tissues in the shape of fries
- Some gloves, so you can have fries fingers
The Lotteria Lucky Bag cost 2,000 yen (US$17.12). For this price you got the following:
- COUPONS! Of course, this fast-food restaurant wants you to get a good deal with coupons worth 2,000 yen—which means you already break-even with this bag
- Placemat with all of the cool Sumikkogurashi (“Corner Living”) characters
- Five-piece paper cup and paper plate set, with the Sumikkogurashi design
- Cloth tote bag, with the fun Sumikkogurashi design
- And a mini fleece blanket, with fun characters
But hat if you don’t like what was inside your bag? Don’t worry, many people get together outside and exchange the items in their lucky bags for things they want! It’s sort of like a huge swap meet, and it is part of the fun.
If you weren’t able to get these Lucky Bags this year don’t worry, you can try your luck again next year!
Thank you for supporting JapanSauce.Net, and I hope this will be another great year!