Living in the US but really want to jump in on the hype train of Japanese lucky bags?
In this guide, I’ll cover everything you need to know about Japanese lucky bags, how to buy one from the US, and tips on finding good items.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
- What Are Japanese Lucky Bags?
- When Should You Buy Japanese Lucky Bags?
- How To Buy Japanese Lucky Bags From The US Using A Proxy
- Alternative Method Of Getting Lucky Bags Without Following Brands Or Proxies (With Pictures)
- How To Find Good Items In Japanese Lucky Bags
What Are Japanese Lucky Bags?
Japanese lucky bags, natively known as Fukubukuro, are mystery boxes offered by brands on New Year’s that are an extremely popular thing in the commercial culture of Japan. These mystery boxes will have random items worth around 150% more than the price of the bag itself.
Each new year, all the biggest brands in Japan will feature promotions for selling these lucky bags, attracting millions of people from all around the world!
But what is it really about these lucky bags that gets people so excited?
Two things. One, the mystery. And second, the price.
People love getting surprised with items that actually hold great value and that’s what’s so special about Japanese lucky bags. The items included in these bags aren’t stock clearances or overstocking, but rare and popular items that you would love to get for yourself!
Secondly, Japanese lucky bags always include items that are worth more than the lucky bag itself.
So much so, that a generic $100 lucky bag will almost always have items worth over $300+!
For these two reasons, people all around the world get so excited for the Fukubukuro season that you can see huge queues in stores where everyone wants to get a lucky bag for themselves.
When Should You Buy Japanese Lucky Bags?
Even though Japanese lucky bags were traditionally only promoted around the new year’s season, lately more and more stores have been offering similar promotions all year long.
This enables you to buy a Japanese lucky bag whenever you want.
So what are the occasions you should go for a lucky bag?
- New Year’s Fukubukuro
Following the tradition, new year’s is the best time to get a Japanese lucky bag.
Not only because at this time you can easily find your favorite brands offering lucky bags promotions, but also because most brands are extremely generous during this time.
This means you can easily hope for rare and expensive items in your lucky bags because brands use this time for promotion and marketing, giving away special items in the Fukubukuro promotion.
Secondly, buying one at New year’s just feels right. Just like you can always buy a Santa hat but buying one at Christmas feels right, Fukubukuros belong on New Year’s and there’s a special feeling to jumping in the hype train at the time.
- Gifting Your Loved Ones
Every now and then, people find themselves invited to their loved ones’ birthdays and don’t know what to buy as a gift.
For those times, a Japanese lucky bag is the best option!
Not only do you get items worth more than what you pay for the bag, but it is also less worrying about what the receiver would think of it.
Worried that your friend wouldn’t like perfume for their birthday? Get them a Japanese lucky bag! Who knows, maybe you do get perfume as well!
Even so, with the 8-10 items you do get, the receiver should like at least a couple of them enough to consider your gift an amazing one!
- Feeling Lucky? Get A Japanese Lucky Bag!
A great benefit of year-round Fukubukuro promotions is that you can get one whenever you want!
This means whenever you’re feeling lucky and want to treat yourself, surprise yourself with a Japanese lucky bag!
Or if you really want to satisfy your shopaholic urge but don’t know what to get, Japanese lucky bags are the perfect option!
How To Buy Japanese Lucky Bags From The US Using A Proxy
Now let’s come to the practicality of buying a lucky bag.
Since it’s a Japanese tradition, you want to buy lucky bags of Japanese brands that you love. However, many of them may not offer to ship to the US or have stores nearby.
Well, in that case, here’s a step-by-step guide on how you can get Japanese lucky bags of your favorite Japanese brands in the US.
Step 1: Find A Japanese Brand You Like
If you want to be surprised with great items that you love, it is important to find a brand that you like.
Japanese lucky bags will have items that the brand already sells so it is important you follow the brand first and decide if you like what they have and then buy their lucky bag.
Step 2: Follow Your Favorite Brands
This step is extremely important because Japanese lucky bags are of limited stock and if your favorite brand is popular, thousands of people all around the world will be waiting for their Fukubukuro promotion to go live.
This means, what you need to do is follow your brand on social media like Facebook or Instagram.
Most brands will collect pre-orders that go live near New Year’s, starting from October or November.
Step 3: Find A Proxy Delivery Service
There are two reasons you should find a proxy delivery service to get Japanese lucky bags.
One, many brands don’t offer international shipping.
Second, sometimes the only option is DHL or FedEx which can cost you a ton!
What Are Proxy Delivery Services?
Proxy delivery service is basically getting a company to buy an international product for you and then having them ship it over to your address under a cheap shipping charge.
For Japanese lucky boxes, proxy delivery companies will buy your desired lucky bog and ship it to you at an affordable shipping fee.
The most common proxy delivery service from Japan are White Rabbit Express, From Japan, and ZenMarket.
Step 4: How To Order A Japanese Lucky Bag Online From Japan To The US (with pictures)
For the purpose of this guide, I will be buying a Japanese lucky bag from Magaseek. Magaseek is a popular Japanese fashion retailer.
Pro Tip: If you find the websites to be confusing in the Japanese language, use a Chrome Google Translate extension.
First, I will head on to the Magaseek website.
Now I will search the term Lucky Bag or Fukubukuro in the search bar.
Here, you can see they have a Puma Lucky Bag.
This lucky bag costs 13,000 Yen, roughly $110, and has items worth 26,400 Yen, $225!
In this screenshot, this item is not in stock because it is March right now and Fukubukuro promotions happen in December.
Once you have the product description open, head on to White Rabbit Express.
Click on Get Started.
Go to the product again and copy the product’s link.
Now paste this link into the White Rabbit Express’s page and click Next.
Once that’s done, you will find fields of item details you need to fill.
Simply copy the product’s name and price from the product description page and paste it here. Then click on Add Item To Cart.
Now you will see a detailed quote on how much that product will cost you in USD.
If the final price seems right to you, click on Checkout.
On the checkout screen, you will be asked for your shipping address and payment details. Fill those up and the order is yours! That’s all!
White Rabbit Express will keep you updated on the delivery process through email and will assign a tracking ID to your order which you can use to track your order.
Alternative Method Of Getting Lucky Bags Without Following Brands Or Proxies (With Pictures)
If you don’t want to go through the hassle of picking brands and waiting for promotions, there are many online Japanese stores where you can browse Japanese lucky bags and order one for yourself with international shipping!
These online stores are like Amazon for the US, where they have a large catalog of Japanese lucky bags of the best brands of Japan.
The most popular of these stores are:
Let’s order an item from Sugoi Mart to show you how it’s done!
First, I’ll go to Sugoi Mart’s website.
From here, I’ll click on the Lucky Bags category.
Here, I can see various lucky bags that are available. Being a fan of demon slayer, I’ll pick the demon slayer lucky bag costing $50 with items valued at $100!
The product description gives me a good idea of what I can expect from the lucky bag.
Next, I’ll click on Add To Cart.
Now, I’m going to click on the cart and Proceed To Checkout.
This will take me to the checkout page.
Here, I will fill in my shipping address.
Now, according to my state, they will provide me with the shipping options I have. If you’re satisfied with the shipping service, click on Continue To Payment.
Now, just enter your card details and click on Pay. That’s all!
How To Find Good Items In Japanese Lucky Bags
If you’re someone cautious and don’t want to risk paying for a bag where you don’t know what you’ll get, these tips may make the experience worthwhile for you!
Tip #1 Go For Food Items
Instead of going for a clothing item that may not fit you or household items that may anime related and not to your taste, why not give your taste buds a treat with Japanese delicacies!
Tip #2 Buy Clothing Lucky Bags That Ask For Your Size
It certainly would be a heap of disappointment if you get great outfits in a lucky bag but none of them fit you.
To prevent that, perfectly measure yourself from head to toe and only order from sites that offer size options.
Tip #3 Follow A Brand
If you follow a brand, you can have confidence no matter what products they surprise you with, it will be good.
For example, one of my favorite Japanese brands is Tsuki. Now if they offer a lucky bag promotion, I can blindly trust them and order it for myself, knowing the brand and knowing I love their products!
Tip #4 Celebrate And Exchange With Friends
The best way to ensure you get only the items you desire is to carry out the Fukubukuro tradition with some friends.
Here’s how this can help.
For example, you and 4 of your friends order a lucky bag for themselves.
When the lucky bags arrive, arrange a meetup and open them up together.
Now, if you’re disappointed with a few items that may not be of your taste, exchange them with the items that your friends have.
This way, you all get to go home keeping your favorite products from all the bags!
That is all for this guide. I hope you found it helpful and informative.
So good luck for the next Fukubukuro season and Happy Shopping!