What to buy in Japan (2018 version)

Hi ozbargainers! It's coming to the end of my Japan trip and I would like to know what do you guys think are the must buys in Japan! I realise there is an existing thread https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/105843
but that's from 2013. Let's hear the updated list;-)


  • +10

    If you could pick me up a Grand Seiko that would be sweet ;p

  • +4

    If you could pick me up some matcha tea that would be sweet ;p

  • +10

    If you could pick me up some sugar that would be sweet ;p

  • +25

    If you could pick me up some JAV that would be sweet ;p

    • Or better still, bring me back Kaho Kasumi.

  • +4

    If you could pick me up some anime stuff that would be sweet ;p

  • +8

    If you could pick me up some Tenga eggs that would be sweet ;p

    • +3

      Hopefully in time for Easter so I can hide them before the local church's Easter egg hunt.

  • +12

    If you could pick me up a gf that would be sweet ;p

  • +4

    If you could pick me up some love hotel body pillows that would be sweet ;p

    • Washed or unwashed?

  • If you could pick me up a wasabi kitkat that would be sweet ;p

    If you could pick me up a sex doll that would be sweet ;p

    If you could pick me up a used undies that would be sweet ;p

    • +23

      What a greedy mofo…

      • +4

        did you..did you just reply to yourself?

    • +5

      too far man…

  • +4

    If you could pick me up some Royce 🍫 that would be sweet ;

    • +2

      Come to Sydney; there’s Royce in Chatswood

  • +3

    If you could pick me up a some daifuku that would be sweet ;p

  • +1

    If you could grab me a case of Strong, that would be sweet ;P

  • +1

    If you could grab for an ex-mate some panties from a used panty vending machine, that would be sweet… for him.

    • -4

      Hey don't copy my ideas. Just staph plz.


  • +3

    If you could pick me up some Yamazaki 25 y/o whisky that would be sweet ;p

    • +2

      I'll have the Hakushu 25 thanks, as per pic:

      • Yeah, Yamazaki was same price at the airport but sold out (when I was there in January of this year). I mean, it was sold out pretty much everywhere I looked, but. I did find a bottle in Kyoto for 398,000¥ but it was a cash only joint, go figure.

        • crazy 250,000 yen for the hakushu 25!

          i got a bargain then when i went to hakushu distillery then it was half the price at 125,000 yen.

        • +1

          @tkboi: I was lucky enough to taste both the Yamazaki and Hakushu 25 (and the Hibiki 30) at the Yamazaki distillery, but they didn't have any full bottles for sale. Next time…

        • @beeawwb: yeah i also tried all them 3 at yamazaki.

          From what I heard it's near impossible to get anything from yamazaki distillery cause so many people visit it and the demand for yamazaki is too high.

          I was really lucky to buy the hakushu 25, they only had that 1 bottle for that month but no one bought it.

        • @tkboi: I'll keep that in mind for whenever I make it back next!

  • If you could pick me up some sweet Japanese sugar babes, that would be sweet ;P

    • +1

      I would have picked one up for myself if it's possible ;-)

      • Can pick up some much younger (but not underage) women.
        Japanese women seem to like older men, much more than other countries.
        And they have more of a cultural thing where they want to "serve their man" , not my thing, I like equallity, but some might like traditional Japanese women.

        • +1

          I'm baffled on why ozzpete has been negg'ed. No sarcasm here.

  • +15

    Do you wear prescription glasses? These are cheaper in Japan and are made much faster than in Australia.

    • Did not know this, thanks for the tip! Will have a look today

      • +6

        Zoff is a good store - go there. Once you pay for your glasses they are ready to pick up around half an hour later.

        • How high was your prescription? I'm just wondering if they stock -7 prescriptions and above.

        • @purplelady: Mine isn't that high. If they don't have it in stock they can order it if you are there for a few days. Also try Jins like adamadam mentioned - another good store.

        • @pantsparty: ok thank you!

        • Wow.. what efficiency! Why should it take 2 days anyway.

        • +1

          Do you get your eyes tested there too? Or BYO prescription?

        • @fartingnuts: You can do either. Last time I went they measured the lenses on my existing glasses and used that for the prescription.

        • +1

          @purplelady: I got glasses made in Japan. My power is -6.5 and -5.75 they stock all sorts of prescriptions. A bonus as well is that the price listed on the frame is the price they will charge for the whole package i.e. lenses included. So in that case you want to get the thinnest lenses (i got 1.7) and you can also get the blue light filter. They take about 30 mins unless you add a blue light filter.

        • +1

          @ashg5446: thanks for the info. Which store did you get your glasses from?

        • @purplelady: i got them from ALOOK they had pretty good frames and they were cheap too. A lot of branded frames (Gucci, Prada, Burberry) in the $200 - $300 price range including lenses which is incredible. But im sure stores such as JINS and the various other stores would be just as good if not better!

        • @ashg5446: oh ok, thanks!

        • Thanks for the info. My sister ended up getting her glasses in Zoff Harajuku. Her lenses were around -7 and also cylinder. They didn't have the exact lenses, and said it would take 4 days to order. However, the girl tweaked her prescriptions, so they could fulfill them within half hour. They cost around 170 AUD. Can't complain since they cost $300+ here with the thinning -.-

      • +2

        I used Jins a few years ago

        They were my favourite glasses

        • Jins man yeah. Like $60 with an optometrist kid, lenses tailored to me, and framed I chose.

      • I got a pair from owndays. They have international warranty and a shop in sydney

  • +3

    what do you guys think

    Okamoto 001
    Sagami 001

    • Definitely. These are so unbelievably good. My friend told me.

    • nsfw google warning

    • +1

      Just be aware, they could be too tight. Get a pack and try first.

  • +3

    Just came back from a Japan trip and we brought back mostly snacks (e.g. Matcha-flavoured tim tams) and tea (in particular, houjicha & matcha powder). Also got a few pairs of shoes and clothes for cheap from Harajuku.

    Many camera gears can be had for a good price too (once you combine the various tax exemptions and discounts offered to visitors). I would have bought something if I was looking to.

    • Where did you find the matcha flavoured Tim Tams? I've never seen them before.

      • I stand corrected. I actually meant kit kats. Sorry to get your hopes up.

        They still taste great even after partially melting during the heatwave we had last weekend. :)

    • Are they imported from Australia?

    • I thought Tim tams are from Australia?

      • Yeah, Tim tams are from Australia. But there are cheese flavoured Tim Tams in Indonesia. Dunno if they still exist.

  • +7

    Visit a Don Quijote store and go nuts.


    There's enough quirky and unusual items there to fill a suitcase.

    • This! I was at akihabara branch, my eyes nearly went blind with choices…

      • +6

        I used to live near the Funabashi branch. it was open 24 hours. I'd ride there on my bike late at night and there would be gangs of racers hanging out with their cars. very polite gangs.

    • I was dizzy and confused with all the stuffs they had! So many items and so many people and so narrow aisles!

  • +6

    Get yourself a nice knife? I bought myself a Sujihiki slicing knife and it was great.

    Otherwise, sweets worth getting are Royce Nama and Shiroi Koibito

    • Cheers, was choosing sweets and there were just too many choices!

    • +1

      Can you bring back knife into a plane?

      • +3

        No problems with mine in the luggage.

        Obviously don't bring it on your carry on haha

      • Yes,i brought back one with no issues.

    • +2

      ROYCE POTATO CHIPS~! I didn't expect much from a chocolate coated potato chip but mother of mercy they are addictive.

    • +1. Definitely get some knives. Kyocera ceramic knives are super great and available at Don Quijote. Get's!

    • Alternatively get some knife sharpening stones. They work amazingly and seem to be far easier and cheaper over there, I don't think I've even seen any here.

  • +1

    kimchi mayonnaise and curry sauce. Its what im gifting people when i return next week. Katsu Miso is also a good sauce, and all three ive mentioned go on everything, especially chicken and sandwiches.

    ive also found some awesome colouring books, for adults and children, from the daiso, as well as some good stationary items.

    • Never thought of this, would make dinner and lunch much easier.

      • Just be careful with things like Mayo, the Japanese-made kewpie cannot be bought back, not to Victoria anyway.

        • Yeah I was thinking to get Mentaiko mayo, but thought it's dairy product, so didn't buy :(

    • +1

      Suprise me wrong,but I'm pretty sure kimchi is Korean? Or does the Japanese only make Kimchi mayo?
      Source:I'm a Korean,and I swear the best kimchi is only in Korea.

      • +1

        you are correct. kimchi in japan is just fermented cabbage, not much chili or spices added to it. Kimchi mayo is pink in colour with the subtle chili flavour. you can also get wasabi flavoured mayo too. make your own kimchi mayo if you like.
        Japan does make good pickles, but most are supermarket quality and kept in the fridge. not worth trying to bring it home. if you find some in a jar, why not. Pickles are awesome.
        Kimchi mayo is only available in some of the bigger supermarkets. I can find it at times at my local, but when i go to Fukuoka or Nagasaki City i can find it in the big supermarkets near train stations etc. the curry sauce 'topping' is also difficult to find, but if you do some searching through a big supermarket in japan, if you dont find these two items im sure you'll find something equally interesting and unavailable in australia. a friend recently recommended black sesame salad dressing 黒ごま is what you need to look for on the bottle.
        kimchi mayo
        curry sauce topping

  • +2

    Village Vanguard also has some fun stuff to look at.
    Tokyu Hands also.

    • I fell in love with B-Side Label stickers from Village Vanguard then found out there was a dedicated B-Side Label Sticker store in Harajuku!!

  • +1

    Mad sushi! Can't bring it back though :(

  • +1

    I guess my list from a previous post, posted last month still stands:

    • +2

      Nice! Funny I didn't come across your comment before… that pretty much covers everything!

  • +2

    look out for second shops eg. Hard-off (they have a variety of different themed stores i.e. clothes, electronics, hardware, etc.)

    some interesting stuff can be bought.

    I grabbed a stack of old nintendo gaming systems for little money. most came in their original boxes with packaging.

  • +3

    If you're a bit of a knife nut like me and going to Osaka, it's well worth heading out to Sakai. There are a few famous knife stores there and even a knife museum. I bought a few blades from Sakai Yusuke, who were amazing people to deal with.

  • +6

    Tokyo Bananas (the cakes, not the fruits), they dont last very long but they are delicious!

    • Did you have problems passing the customs at the airport (when getting into oz)?

      • +1

        No issues at all, it's processed food that is properly packaged. They won't have an issue with that.

        • oh ok cool. How about pickled stuff? is that considered fresh or processed? I wanted to bring some pickled ume last time, but was worried they'll take it away

        • +2

          That's fine too, but it needs to look like it came from a supermarket in a sealed container with labels. eg doesn't look home made.

          And I hate to state the obvious, but just in case. You need to declare it.

        • @CityEnd: OH ok cool! Yeah I always declare since I usually bring a lot of snacks back. But pickled stuff is the one I kinda stay away from as I don't want them to go to the bin. Thanks CityEnd!

        • Despite the name, it's more like a commercially packaged cake in individual wrapping.

    • +2

      I buy about 10 boxes of those for gifts whenever I'm there and keep 3 to myself. They are amazing

  • +1

    Some Nikka Distillery whiskey! They're all excellent!

    • +5

      Seconded on Whiskey. It's extremely cheap over there. I bought a bottle of Laphroaig Quarter Cask (not Japanese) for something like $35AUD.

  • -2

    those topre mechanical keyboards bruh

    • You can certainly try these out in bic camera, etc, but they're cheaper on Australia even with the visa discount and duty free.

  • Authentic Manga! Raw to the bone

  • +3

    Go to Supreme store in Shibuya, buy a bunch of T-Shirts/Accessories. Flip on eBay for great profit.

    • How? A quick search online shows 1 t shirt selling at about 11400 ¥ which is a about $145, eBay Au is selling at about $45 tho

      • +2

        Ebay stuff is probably fake, there's lots of fake Supreme stuff on Aliexpress

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