Japanese Apple Fans Line Up for Annual 'Lucky Bag' Discounts

Tech in Asia reports on the Japanese tradition of "lucky bags" in which retailers celebrate the new year by offering customers grab bags filled with unknown items at a substantial discount from their retail prices. In exchange for the substantial discounts, customers must simply accept whatever products are in the bags.

lucky bag ipad 2 2012
Apple lucky bag with iPad 2, Smart Cover, Camera Connection Kit, headphones, and more

Apple offers some of the most highly sought-after lucky bags, with customers paying hundreds of dollars for bags hoping to receive their favorite big-ticket items. This year's lucky bags from Apple were sold for 33,000 yen, or the equivalent of about $430.

I always considered myself a pretty big Apple fan, but this event seems to bring out the most hard-core fanboys. Back in 2010 I tried to queue for a lucky bag, arriving at the store at 5am only to find that overnight campers had filled all the spots. This year the bag cost 33000 yen (about $430), and most customers are hoping that there will be a big ticket item inside like an iPad 2 or a Macbook Air.

Japanese blog Mac Otakara posts a gallery of photos showing the contents of several lucky bags, with the biggest prize being an 11-inch MacBook Air bundled with a sleeve for the computer, a Magic Mouse, and a pair of headphones. Other lucky bags shown in the gallery offered either a 16 GB Wi-Fi iPad 2 or an 8 GB iPod touch as the main item.

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Top Rated Comments

arn Avatar
162 months ago
You would be pretty pissed if you got a load of cheap items though, no?

I thought the value of the bags was always greater than the price. They may not be things you want, but I don't think you lose money on the deal.

arn
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ewkid Avatar
162 months ago
This would never work in the U.S. because of the "it's all about me" attitude. You would be pissed if you got an iPad and the guy behind you got a MacBook Air. Japanese can handle this, we can't.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lighthouse_man Avatar
162 months ago
Why cannot we have this :'(

People returning their bags for a refund because they didn't get the Air?
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NutsNGum Avatar
162 months ago
I wish I lived in Japan.

Primarily to watch Godzilla fights, though this is also quite good.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JGowan Avatar
162 months ago
What fun! I would totally do this... however... in the USA:

It would not go over here, though. Americans want what they want when they want it (and nothing less so help them God). They would never be willing (in droves) to just accept whatever's in the bag.

Even if they signed a consent form saying they would abide by the rules, the minute they were disappointed after opening their swag bag, here'd come the tears/swears. They would try to find a way around the NO RETURN rule and there would be a lot of pissing/moaning/fit throwing. They'd make the whole situation impossible and miserable.

I'm American and I hate to admit it but I know how much of this society acts/thinks. I'm not that way (and would accept a less than stellar bag), but most are (and wouldn't).

Sad but true.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
adcx64 Avatar
162 months ago
That's the coolest tradition I've ever seen. As there's nothing in the Apple store I wouldn't want!
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)