crazy conbini items top

Convenience stories in Asia are known all over the world for actually living up to their name. Whether you need an emergency swimsuit, want to grab pretty much any drink ever made, or just have a hankering for some Evangelion donuts, a nearby conbini will suit your needs.

But sometimes there are items available in conbini that don’t seem to make any sense… and yet people still buy them. Japanese netizens shared their most confusing yet surprisingly useful convenience store finds online, and we have them here for you. Would you ever admit to buying some of these?

The first item on Japanese netizens’ list of weird-yet-useful conbini things: DVDs.

Need something to keep the kids busy? See a DVD that brings back childhood memories that you suddenly can’t live without? Very few people regularly buy DVDs from convenience stores, but when you want one in a pinch, you’ll be thankful for whatever they have available.

▼ “Before today I was always like ‘who buys DVDs at a convenience store?’ and then I bought this lol”

▼ “Got this Shin-chan DVD at a conbini! 20 episodes for 980 yen (US$8.25) is a steal!”

▼ “The sign of Japan being a great country: all Mad Max prequels lined up and ready to buy at a conbini.

Next on the list of bizarrely convenient things: neckties.

All right, I have to come clean on this one: I own a 99-yen convenience store tie. I needed one last-minute, bought it at a nearby conbini, and 10 years later it’s still the best tie I’ve ever had. So while buying your next tie at a convenience store may seem strange, I can assure you it will be one of the best purchases you ever make.

▼ “On a business trip and I forgot to bring a tie. There was no men’s store nearby, but I scored this baby at a conbini.”


▼ “Just had my life saved by a conbini selling black funeral ties.”

Speaking of funeral stuff, the next thing you think is crazy but is actually really helpful: grave decorations.

In Japan, visiting the gravesites of your family and offering them candles and incense is an extremely common practice. Still, at first glance it may seem strange to have the candles and incense sold at convenience stores—shouldn’t you go to a specialty shop and get something nice instead? Maybe, but you’ll settle for anything in an emergency.

▼ “Went to my mother’s grave on the anniversary of her death, but I forgot to take incense with me. I bought these at a nearby conbini. The candles were great and didn’t even go out when the wind blew!”

▼ “People in Hiroshima put these on their family’s graves during Obon. They’re being sold outside this 7-Eleven.”

The next item on the list of things you’d never think of buying from a conbini but totally would: flowers.

Flowers. Those are the things you buy at a flower shop, or a home goods center, or maybe a supermarket or something, right? You don’t usually buy them in the same place you get cigarettes or soda or a cheap lunch bento heated up, right?

Well, wrong, apparently!

▼ “Went to the conbini this morning and saw these flowers for household shrines. They’re not even a special item or anything; they have them every day!”

▼ “I went to Lawson and they were selling flowers! Man, conbini really do have everything. I bought some for New Year.”

The last item on the list of things you’d never expect to buy in a conbini: large paper bags.

Why would you need to buy a bag in a convenience store? I mean, they give you a bag to put your purchase in! …right?

▼ “I always wondered who bought those 300 yen ($2.50) paper bags for sale at conbini. But then I was out and my bag broke, so I ran into a conbini and bought one. Thank you so much paper bag-sama! You saved my life! I love you!”

▼ “My cats play with the paper and plastic bags I get from conbini more than anything else I give them.”

Have you ever spotted something in a convenience store that made you wonder who would ever buy it? More to the point, have you ever bought one yourself? Tell us about it!

Source: Naver Matome
Featured/top image: Flickr (Yuya Tamai)