This is a picture of all the goods I bought when I came to Japan last year; you can imagine how happy I was that such stores exist here, coming here on the plain with limited baggage and having to stay for a year, I needed to buy a lot of stuff to make my life easier. I can tell you that at least 80% of that stuff came from 100 yen shops.
In fact, I still buy almost 50% of all my stuff I use around the house from 100 yen shops. Plastic bags, elastic bands, kitchen tools, notebooks, you name it, just one stop at the 100 yen shop and I come back with 10 times more stuff than I actually needed.
Which is actually something you might want to look out for; since everything is so cheap and with everything I mean a very wide collection of all kinds of stuff you think you all need, you might actually end up spending more than you should! Which, I guess is maybe the essence of these kinds of stores, so watch out!
Here is a short list of things I particularly was shocked to find at a 100 yen shop, to give you an idea of the variety of goods that are sold here.
- Pots and pans!
- All different kinds of storage goods
- Kitchen knifes (do not know if they are any good though...)
- Table clothes
- Children's study books
- Cables for iPhones (USB cables)
- Bathroom mats
Where can you find these 100 shops?
In Tokyo, really almost anywhere. Just ask anyone on the street and they will probably know where to find one. Actually, recently when I was walking in Ikebukuro and my feet started to hurt because of my high heels, I asked a random lady where I could find a 100 yen shop and she guided me to a nearby Lawson 100 shop. This store actually specializes in food (if you ever come across one, please check it out! It is amazing!), but they sold what I came for as well; a pair of slippers.
When you come to Japan on holidays, I advise you to check out the DAISO in Harajuku. Some of the Tokyo tours here at Travelience also gives you the opportunity to visit this store, so check it out!
There also exist 300 yen (315 yen!) and 500 yen (525 yen!) stores; named respectively “3 coins” and “5 coins”.Where 100 yen stores can usually be found almost everywhere where there is a shopping centre, these stores are somewhat harder to find but usually have some higher quality goods than the 100 yen store.