If you’ve been to Japan or just watched Japanese movies and TV, you’re bound to have noticed that they have vending machines coming out the wazoo. Seriously, those things are everywhere! Head out to the deepest inaka (countryside) and you’re still bound to run across a random vending machine nestled in the greenery as though it’s been waiting its whole life just to slake your thirst. But with so many vending machines all over the place, drinks companies have had to get competitive, and reports from Twitter speak of a mythical machine that dispenses two for the price of one canned coffee! But just what sort of wizardry is this?
Much has been said on the subject of the ubiquitous vending machines in Japan. Yes, vending machines seem to be lurking around every street corner here in Japan. And while hot beverages may not be among the most unusual products available from a vending machine, they can certainly offer you great comfort when you’re facing the bitter cold during the winter months.
And it turns out there’s quite a variety of hot drinks out there that you can buy from a machine, as a recent post on Japanese trend and information compilation site Naver Matome shows us. Let’s take a look at their selection of beverage options that may come in extremely handy when you’re caught outside in freezing weather.
Nov 3, 2014
If you ever visit Tokyo, the district of Asakusa is a worthwhile spot to wander around in. It has a healthy mix of tradition, entertainment, food, and shopping that should please anyone looking for a small but all-encompassing Japanese experience.
But there’s one other unique feature that Asakusa has and it’s one that’s surprising even the most entrenched Tokyo residents. Apparently, Asakusa is home to an enormous selection of wildly unusual vending machines. And coming from a land positively peppered with automatic vendors, that’s saying a lot.
Sep 29, 2014
One cool thing about living in Japan is that, whether you’re in a bustling city or the open countryside, you’re never too far from a vending machine. True, you won’t find any canned ramen in many machines outside of Akihabara, but so long as there’s power to run one, you’re pretty much always within a few hundred metres of a machine selling both chilled and hot drinks.
We’ve seen some unusual things turning up in Japan’s vending machines over the years, but cans of peach juice with money taped to them is definitely a new one.
Jul 16, 2014
You might say that the last great life-changing technological achievement was the development of portable devices like smartphones and tablets. However, it’s been a few years now and nothing truly new has come down the pike aside from making other everyday things “smart” like glasses or a watch.
Just in time, we now have a new device that may change the very fabric of society. It’s a vending machine that lifts up the skirt of a Hatsune Miku plush toy. It may not sound important right now, but that’s how these game-changers work. In a few years’ time all of our lives will revolve around this invention, so let’s take a moment to see how it works.
Japan has always had the market cornered on weird vending machines, so it’s going to take a lot to impress the people in a country where you can buy anything from fresh eggs to crepes from a metal box. But this new cupcake vending machine has been turning heads, not for how bizarre it is (by Japan’s standards), but how cute it is.
Sprinkles, the popular cupcake chain in the US, has just opened a “Cupcake ATM” at its New York store, the first of its kind in the area. It opened just 24 hours ago and the lines have been unbelievably long. Let’s take a closer look at the opening day.
Japan is famous for “crazy” vending machines that are fabled to encase bizarre products and inappropriate wares. But for the most part, Japanese vending machines just spit out cans of cold or hot beverages, and sometimes soup. But this particular one found on a rarely traveled road in Tokyo could be a first as it seems to contain a giant beetle for sale.
Ah, Japan. Land of the world’s best vending machines. It’s hard to go anywhere in the country without finding one, including the summit of Mount Fuji. With over five million scattered around the country, someone should put those hunks of metal to work. Three organizations in Japan are doing just that, teaming up to turn the machines into a lifesaving tool in the event of a disaster, and we aren’t talking about the devices giving out free beverages.
Aug 10, 2013
Many of us have heard legends about Japanese vending machines. It’s said that you can get practically anything, not just pop and candy bars, from some of these mechanical beauties. Sadly, much as I hate to be the bearer of bad news, most vending machines in Japan only serve your typical fare of soda, water bottles, tea, and corn soup. I was personally quite disheartened on my first trip overseas when I was unable to find a single novelty vending machine during my entire visit. However, this upcoming fall season, a popular bra company in Japan is inviting women to buy their brand new bra directly from a vending machine.
Convenience stores really have become an integral part of our lives, haven’t they? We think nothing of seeing them on every street corner, and I’m sure we’ve all come to rely on them in times of emergencies (like when you’re in dire need of Häagen-Dazs cookies & cream ice cream at two in the morning). Well, convenience stores may be practically ubiquitous, but we have to say this particular one took us by surprise. It’s certainly not like any convenience store we’ve ever seen!
On a recent trip to the US, one of our Japanese reporters, Yoshio, heard about an unusual vending machine that serves up ice cream. Excited to see how the icy treats would be delivered, our reporter made a beeline for the machine’s nearest location: the local Walmart. We filmed the machine in action and got his take on the automated ice cream experience first-hand.
Jun 19, 2013
Ladies and gentlemen, meet Aki-chan. She’s adorable and highly intelligent–a desirable combination in any girl, wouldn’t you say? All right, so maybe she’s a bit on the hairy side, but that’s not really her fault, because … well, she’s not human.
And as you can see from the video we have for you below, while Aki-chan may not be a member of the Homo sapien species, she certainly has a delightful trick up her sleeve (even if she isn’t wearing anything with sleeves)!
Readers of our site may be aware that Japan is home to vending machines that sell a wide range of bizarre and unexpected products, from pornographic magazines to fresh eggs and even fermented soybeans (natto). Now, we’ve found yet another interesting vending machine that’s been featured in a story on Asahi Newspaper’s digital site which we thought would be interesting to share with you.
This machine in particular caught our attention because it combines the Japanese people’s fondness of vending machines with their love of a dish that is extremely popular in Japan. And what might that dish be? We’ll give you a hint — it’s golden brown in color and has a delightfully rich and spicy aroma that’s sure to make your mouth water… Read More
Legend has it that in the urban center of Osaka there sits a vending machine so cheap that it boggles the mind. Here a tasty beverage can be purchased for a measly 10 yen (US$0.11).
RocketNews24 had sent a reporter, Usagi Yumeno, to Fukushima Ward in the port town in search of this machine.
Messing with These Vending Machines May Result in Severing of Fingers and/or Published Photos of Your Genitals
Jan 9, 2013
Rumor has it that among the numerous maid cafés, manga, DVD, and video game shops in Akihabara, Tokyo, there exists a unique corner full of vending machines.
The machines contain typical fare for Japan – colas, teas, snacks, condoms, and such – but are guarded by savage penalties unbecoming of the general levels of politeness in this country. In fact, often involving dismemberment, these penalties seem more at home in a bleak post-apocalyptic Thunderdome type society than urban Tokyo.
Few know about this legendary group of vending machines outside of Akihabara aficionados. So our reporter, Kuzo, decided to venture up the electric river of Akihabara in search of the Heart of Vending Machine Darkness.
Michelle Lynn Dinh
Oct 28, 2012
You, Me, And a Tanuki is a weekly featured blog run by Michelle, a Californian who is currently one of only two foreigners living in Chibu, a tiny fishing village on one of the Oki islands in Japan. Check back every Saturday for a new post or read more on her website here!
You can get coffee just about anywhere in Japan thanks to the millions (yes, millions) of vending machines littered around the country. ”How convenient,” you must be thinking. Yeah, if you like drinking awful coffee.
Interview With the Man Who, Rather Than Bottled Water, Received A Mysterious Remote Control from Vending Machine
May 24, 2012
May 16th was a day like any other on the platform of Koiwa Station in Tokyo. But for a Musician/DJ who goes by the name Soeda Dyjean, a simple purchase of a bottle of water turned into a one-way ticket – to the Twilight Zone.
Ever had the irresistible urge to have fresh apples while you’re outdoors? Well, if you ever have such an urge when you’re at the Kasumigaseki subway station or the Suidobashi subway station in Tokyo, you don’t need to wait to satisfy your urge. You can get some fresh cut apples right at the station – from a vending machine!
While passing by the Shinkansen ticket gates at Tokyo Station, I noticed a vending machine that didn’t seem to belong there. Strange in this land of vending machines, I know, but something about this machine was different.
When you’re thirsty you can always rely on the vending machine to be there waiting for you with a selection of chilled beverages. With the summer sun beating down upon us day after day, we find ourselves seeing out the vending machine’s oasis even more.
However, we recently came across one vending machine in Akihabara, Tokyo that we were slightly reluctant to exchange our silver with: several of the drink selections were covered with a label reading “???” Read More
- We try the new 1,500-yen Kobe beef burger from Lotteria 【Taste Test】1
- Chinese netizens left reeling after father of slain Japanese hostage apologizes to the public2
- Side-boob Shirt is the useless evolution of last year’s Boob Turtleneck3
- Is Japan’s “Daughter in a box” a myth?【Myth-Busters Series】4
- First Kit Kat Chocolatery shop with cafe opens in Kyoto! New Chocolatery items released too5
- Power of soybeans turns Bean-Throwing Festival into sexy action flick in awesome commercial6
- A visit to Sushi Dai, Japan’s best sushi restaurant according to world travelers7
- Fushigi Yugi stage adaptation gets cast and schedule as Mysterious Play becomes a real one8
- Ten-year-old boy cuts construction worker’s lifeline because noise was interrupting his cartoons9
- New magnetic “slate” lets you write on actual paper, digitize your drawings in real-time10
- Nobel Prize-winner Shuji Nakamura to Japan’s young people: “Get out of Japan”1
- New magnetic “slate” lets you write on actual paper, digitize your drawings in real-time2
- No more photo retouches! New makeup for cosplayers claims to create photo-perfect skin3
- Cross-dressing Cosplay Idol Group a Huge Hit in China4
- Attack on Titan’s Universal Studios Japan attraction opens5
- The cat hairband, for when cat ears just aren’t enough6
- Cross-dressing talent Matsuko Deluxe: AKB opening the Tokyo Olympics “would embarrass Japan”7
- Creating your own custom etched glass is a lot simpler than you think8
- Disney Store is all grown up with new branch designed for adult women opening in Tokyo9
- Fushigi Yugi stage adaptation gets cast and schedule as Mysterious Play becomes a real one10
- Nobel Prize-winner Shuji Nakamura to Japan’s young people: “Get out of Japan”1
- Kyoto taxi drivers reduce convenience store robberies by 50 percent by doing absolutely nothing2
- Cosplay ideals vs. cosplay reality, a.k.a. cool vs. funny 【Photos】3
- Internet ready to shut up and take your money as preorders finally start for Cat Ear Headphones4
- Edo era Samurai were pretty gay5
- Ugly-cute makeup genius feeds off negative troll comments on Twitter6
- New magnetic “slate” lets you write on actual paper, digitize your drawings in real-time7
- Teacher draws over students’ doodles to make red pen masterpieces8
- Photos of people lining up outside of the Sapporo Apple Store make us feel positively frozen9
- Netizens hatch adorable baby birds from supermarket eggs, provide evidence10
- Hayao Miyazaki working on new project, says “I’m going to continue making anime until I die”1
- Self-taught Singaporean artist creates unbelievably realistic art on plywood2
- Buyers’ remorse in China: After a record-breaking day of online shopping, the angry selfies begin3
- 1,200 Japanese workers convert above-ground train to subway line in a matter of hours4
- Tiny town in northern Japan creates gorgeous, gigantic artwork out of rice paddies 【Video】5
- Japanese high school holds annual contest to decide the prettiest “girl” in school6
- Nobel Prize-winner Shuji Nakamura to Japan’s young people: “Get out of Japan”7
- Kyoto taxi drivers reduce convenience store robberies by 50 percent by doing absolutely nothing8
- Sorry guys! Video of “sexy ice cream girl” in Taipei only delivers on half its milky promises9
- Oysters’ amazing cleaning skills shock Japanese netizens who question their shellfish habit10
- Power of soybeans turns Bean-Throwing Festival into sexy action flick in awesome commercial
- A visit to Sushi Dai, Japan’s best sushi restaurant according to world travelers
- Fushigi Yugi stage adaptation gets cast and schedule as Mysterious Play becomes a real one
- Ten-year-old boy cuts construction worker’s lifeline because noise was interrupting his cartoons
- New magnetic “slate” lets you write on actual paper, digitize your drawings in real-time
- Handy bath pillow doubles as a smartphone holder, might also be giving you a hug
- “Can you help meow-t here?” Twitter user discovers why his bread clock was constantly wrong
- Which one’s your favourite Cid? The evolution of Final Fantasy’s constant character
- Hello Kitty keeping as busy as ever — this time she collaborates with…money itself!
- Does your cereal bowl need some love? Try a Tower of the Sun capsule toy!
- Forget shuriken: 10 stealthy and dangerous ninja tools you didn’t know existed
- Steam Garden: Tokyo’s steampunk festival might be better than a Victorian time machine
- Stay warm with a USB-powered, inflatable hug pillow heated to exactly human body temperature