Vending machines and Japan

about 2 years ago
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One more interesting tidbit about the Japanese. Did you know that the Japanses have an unquenchable hunger for vending machines. For us in India, it is something we see in malls or airports but in Japan it is everywhere, literally in every nook and corner. And interestingly, all sell the same snacks and cold drinks yet, they are an integral part of the Japanese landscape.

Japan has the highest number of vending machines in the world – over 5.5 million, which is one for every 23 people.

At night, rather than switching off, the machines come to life with vibrant colors and bright lights. In rural areas, at the side of the road, it's still possible to find unmanned wooden stalls where farmers place fruit, vegetables and other goods which can be purchased by leaving the correct amount of cash. And the same culture is what makes these vending machines such a huge mainstay.

Perhaps this could only work in a country with a crime rate among the lowest in the world. Vending machines in Japan are rarely robbed or vandalized. In fact, they are well taken care of, meaning that they always work -- which further contributes to customer satisfaction. The vending machines are sometimes covered in snow and it still continues to work!

Well, we have ATMs which do not work and even some of the few vending machines require a “kick or two” to work! As we say always, Japan is another planet!

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