Shopping in Japan

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Shopping in Japan is extremely popular with people coming from around the world to shop there. In particular, shopping in Tokyo is a major pastime.


Shopping Neighborhoods

In every city in Japan, there are specialties and neighborhoods where visitors go to find the top new goods and brands. However, there are no places quite as popular as the shopping districts of Tokyo. Here, there a number of highly popular neighborhoods where people go to buy things:

Harajuku – The center of Tokyo Street Fashion, Harajuku is known for its number of fashion boutiques marketing towards young people. Stores of note include La Foret, Oriental Bazaar, Togo Shrine Flea Market, and Yoyogi Park Flea Market. Dozens of small boutiques from Japanese designers and international startups are also located here.

Aoyama Dori – here you will find a number of trendy shops alongside traditional trade posts and farmers type markets as well as the Japan Traditional Craft Center.

Ginza – There are a number of popular department stores in Ginza along with many traditional Japanese items. Stores of note include Matsuya department store, the world famous Mikimono Pearl Store, Mitsokoshi Department Store, and Seibu Department Store.

Shinjuku – A number of discount camera stores and department stores in addition to the major underground shopping center in Shinjuku Station are located here. Shops of note include Isetan Department Store, Kinokuniya Bookstore, Takashimaya Times Square, and Yodobashi Camera.

Shibuya – Shibuya is another very popular shopping location for young people with multiple major stores for fashion. Parco, Seibu Department Store and Shibuya 109 are just a few of the many shopping locations of note here.

Akihabara – This is the center of the Japanese electronics trade with more than 500 stores selling electronics. Most of the time, you can find deals up to 30% of normal prices and you can haggle them down a bit more.

For most businesses, shopping hours in Japan are from 10 or 11am to 7 or 8pm and they are usually open on weekends and holidays for later hours. There is a 5% consumption tax on all purchases and each municipality has its own additional taxes that may be levied. Store sales are held in July, August, December and January and Tokyo is well known for its flea markets.

Top Brands

Japan is best known for its fashion and electronics, something heavily reinforced in the shopping districts of Tokyo with Issey Miyake, Comme des Garcons, and dozens more brands from the Japanese fashion scene being sold in stores like Seibu, Shibuya 109 and Loveless. In electronics stores such as Yodobashi Camera and the electronics town of Akihabara you can find products from Nikon, Sony, and dozens more electronics companies.

What People Buy in Japan

The cost of living in Japan is very high and its is represented both in the cost of things in places like Tokyo and the salaries of many of the country’s citizens. Visitors often seek out the fashion and electronics areas because of the variety and uniqueness of them, though other major sites include the massive cooking supply streets, the traditional crafts, and the local produce.

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