Japan Word of the Day #52 – Hyakkin (100 yen shop)

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Today’s Word is: Hyakkin (100均)

Hyakkin is an abbreviated form of Hyaku-en Kinitsu Shop (100円均一ショップ). Its literal translation is “100 yen flat rate shop.”

In Japan, 100 yen shop is extremely popular because these stores (usually chain) offer a variety of items and do actually carry pretty high quality miscellaneous products. The first 100 yen shop of today’s business model started with Daiso in 1991. Hiroyake Yano, the founder of Daiso, really pushed for improvement in product quality, thus winning trust and reputation from super markets and got Daiso brand known to the industry.

Although hyakkin stores advertise themselves as “100 yen flat rate,” many of them add on sales tax on top of tagged prices. So most items are 105 yen instead of 100. And from April this year (less than in a week!), Japan’s sales tax will go up to 8%, which makes everything sold at 108 yen in these shops.

Image source: Yoshizuya

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