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


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

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.

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.

Article Link: Japanese Apple Fans Line Up for Annual 'Lucky Bag' Discounts


macrumors 65816
Nov 17, 2008
That's the coolest tradition I've ever seen. As there's nothing in the Apple store I wouldn't want!
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macrumors G3
Mar 20, 2007
I'd be annoyed if I paid $400 and got a sleeve, a pair of socks and a $10 iTunes voucher!


macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
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.



macrumors G3
Mar 20, 2007
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.

I'd be VERY surprised if the minimum value of the items in the bag wasn't the $400 you spent.
That's good then! Even if it was stuff you didn't want, you could always sell it.

I'd love to participate in something like this..


macrumors G3
Dec 31, 2004
"My Own Private Idaho”
Looks fun....

We have "Grab Bags" here in the US instead (around the Holidays)... ;)

I always got the Shampoo, while my Cousins always got the cool stuff like a portable Radio.... :eek:


macrumors 6502a
Jul 17, 2002
apple used to run this in the US

I think apple stopped running this in the US because of people complained about it not being fair or just complaining (to be honest I don't know for sure, but I know they used to do it, but don't anymore).

we camped out for the SF Union Square apple store in part to get lucky bags. They were $250 for those ones and the big ticket items were ipods - yes, that's how long ago this was. None of us got any ipod - here's what came in most of the lucky bags:


It'd be cool if apple brought that back to the larger retail store openings, unfortunately I don't have the freedom & flexibility to camp out these days.


macrumors member
Apr 3, 2011
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.


macrumors G3
Jun 11, 2008
Los Angeles, CA
People returning their bags for a refund because they didn't get the Air?
I'm sure that Apple has flagged them in the system so even if someone does return something they don't get more than the $430 back. That is if they are allowed to return it at all. My roommate was once regifted an iPod from another friends goody bag at a hollywood event and tried to return it. He didn't tell them it was a give away item just that it was a gift and he didn't have a receipt. They looked it up by serial and saw that it was an event gift and refused to take it back.


macrumors 68000
Jan 29, 2003
Mineola TX
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.


macrumors member
Jun 21, 2009
People are really willing to spend $430 for random items? $430 is a lot of money to throw away in a lottery.

Why don't they just take the money and put it toward what they actually want to buy?

Let me put it this way: what if I told you that by giving 400 bucks to me you would get random tech items up to a range of 400$ to 800$ sticker price? Would you really give me 400 dollars?
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