How to do shopping in Japan?
Shopping in Japan is very convenient but there are some differences compared to other countries.
Is shopping cheap in Japan?
Shopping in Japan is neither cheap nor expensive. Generally speaking, Electronics, shoes and branded goods are more expensive in Japan (Compared to the USA). Anime goods, Japanese souvenirs tend to be cheap. Just like any other country, There are very cheap shops (Example: Daiso. Each item is $1) and very expensive department stores (Takashimaya, Daimaru).
What should I know about shopping in Japan?
-Shops usually start operations at 11:00 AM. If you go to a store at 10:00, you need to wait for 1 hour.
-Department stores close at 6 pm. Nishiki Market closes at 6 pm.
-There are not many foreign-exchange centres. Please exchange your money at the airport or at the bank. Banks close at 3 pm.
-Many shops prefer cash. Credit card cannot be used everywhere. There are ATM at every convenience store.
-Shop staff do not speak English (They may understand you, if you write on paper in English). Use short sentences, speak very slowly.
-Supermarkets don’t allow customers to open the packages of snacks inside the store (even after you pay).
-There are no trash bins in public areas.
-If the floor is tatami, you must take your shoes off.
-Returning and refunding purchases is difficult. You must have a receipt if you want to return a product. If you open the package, you cannot return the product.
If you want to buy branded goods, search for this. This will show you the nearest outlet mall.
If you want to buy cheap souvenirs, search for Daiso . Daiso is a $1 shop where each souvenir costs only 1 dollar.
If you want to buy electronics, search for “Yodabashi Camera”. Yodobashi camera is the largest electronic shop with many branches all around Japan.
If you want to buy traditional and expensive gifts, go to Takashimaya department store
If you want to buy anime materials, you should visit Akihabara in Tokyo or Nipponbashi in Osaka.
If you want to buy typical souvenirs, you can buy them near the major touristic spots such as Asakusa in Tokyo, Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto (2nenzaka) and Dotonbori in Osaka. Narita Airport also has so many cheap souvenir shops.
-Here are some shopping phrases
Do you accept credit cards? : Kaado okkei?
Where is the fitting room? : Fittingu ruumu?
Can I try this on? : Shichaku shite ii?
I want to leave my bags here. Bakku koko de iii?
I want to pay for these together. Isho de haraitai.
I want to pay for these seperately. Betsu de haraitai.
***Usually, souvenir shops in central areas and noncentral areas have the same price. In Japan, the popular areas are not more expensive.
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