10 Things You Can Buy From a Japanese Vending Machine Slideshow

Bananas, burgers, and eggs – oh my!
Japanese Vending Machines

Photo Modified: Flickr / Alan Levine / CC BY 4.0

Check out some of the strange things you can buy from vending machines all over Japan, and make sure to visit some of them on your next trip.

10 Things You Can Buy From a Japanese Vending Machine

10 Things You Can Buy From a Japanese Vending Machine

Photo Modified: Flickr / Alan Levine / CC BY 4.0

The very first vending machine in Japan was installed in 1888 and proffered cigarettes. Drink vending machines took off in Japan in the 1950s. In the following decades, especially as the country’s economy grew in post-World War II years, machines selling a variety of other items began appearing. Vending machines offer an easy, low-maintenance marketplace for goods, which is why they’re now entwined in the country’s culture.

Check out 10 items you’d probably be surprised to find in a vending machine. Make sure to pick some of them up, if even just for novelty’s sake, on your next visit to Japan.

Bananas

Bananas

Photo Modified: Flickr / Jun Seita / CC BY 4.0

Who buys bananas at the grocery store anymore? Certainly not some people in Japan, as these vending machines selling clusters of the fruits have recently grown in popularity.

Burgers

Burgers

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Boxed hamburgers at all hours of the night from a vending machine? If you’re dealing with an insurmountable craving, this is the ultimate solution.

Eggs

Eggs

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Vending machines filled with bags or containers of fresh eggs are oftentimes found in the countryside and owned by farmers. No word yet on how the eggs are ejected without cracking.

Fresh Lettuce

Fresh Lettuce

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This vending machine is not only a novelty, but also an ingenious way of growing food in alternative conditions. The machine, called the Chef’s Farm and developed by Dentsu, facilitates the growth of 60 heads of lettuce every day using only fluorescent lighting. 

Flowers

Flowers

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Looking for a beautiful floral arrangement? Look no further than one of these metal machines, where you can buy one for 2,000 yen (a little over 16 USD).

Ice Cream

This ice cream machine offers 14 different types, all for 120 yen (less than one USD). For a price like that, we’ll definitely scream.

Noodles

Noodles are a primary aspect of Japanese cuisine, so it’s fortunate that vending machines don’t disappoint in this area. Instant ramen machines that produce cooked meals are common — some even offer a bowl complete with vegetables and meat.

Rice

Rice

Photo Modified: Flickr / George Donnelly / CC BY 4.0

Rice is another Japanese food staple, so it’s no wonder that there are vending machines that specialize in it.

T-Shirts

T-Shirts

Photo Modified: Flickr / Kojach / CC BY 4.0

At this vending machine in Shimokitazawa, customers can buy t-shirts for 1,800 yen (a little less than 15 USD). If only shopping for clothing could be this easy everywhere.

Umbrellas

Umbrellas

Photo Modified: Flickr / Alan Levine / CC BY 4.0

Umbrella vending machines are available all over Japan. At some, customers will only pay 300 yen (a little over two USD) to stay dry.