Friday, September 9, 2011

Drinks Anyone - Japanese Drink Vending Machines

8th August, 2010 -  It's time's like that you need a nice cold refreshing Coca Cola... (advertising commission is in the mail, I'm sure). Well, this is just a short post about another typical part of Japanese life. Vending machines. Especially drink vending machines. You can tell this photo was taken in summer as all of the drinks are cold (blue lights). One of the best part of Japanese vending machines are the hot (er - red light?) drinks. A great winter's treat to grab yourself a hot can of coffee from a vending machine as you're negotiating the snow outside. That's a long way away now however.

I'm constantly amazed how these vending machines are not vandalised.  Then again, there's very little apparent vandalism or graffiti in Japan in general. I'm also curious about just how ubiquitous these vending machines are. They're everywhere - in fact there's one sitting on the street about 50 m from T-chan's house in Sapporo. In the middle of nowhere. I can't even say I've ever seen anyone buy a drink from it, so I wonder why it's there. If nothing else, I suppose it's a tempting advertising method...

One of the other differences you can notice is the range of drinks: coffees (lots of different styles), teas, coke, sports drink, green teas, fruit juices (still or carbonated), and of course water. And all pretty cheap (from 120yen for the smaller drinks to about 150yen for the larger). And did I mention the beer vending machines? Hmmmm.... beer vending machines... it's a hard life.


  1. Have you seen the new kind of vending machines around in Japan that uses facial recognition technology to recommend drinks based on the customer`s age and gender? Amazing technology and Only in Japan :)

    Japan Australia

  2. No... but then again, there's also a lot of changes to cigarette machines in terms of id requirements as well. At the end of the day, facial recognition software is a bit of gimmick... but think about the time when they link up the machines to data mining software combined with facial recognition technology. Will definitely not be buying panties from vending machines then (joke).