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Published on 04.28.2016
Christmas in japan is a very commercial and romantic affair; unlike america and europe in which it is more of a family event. Christmas in Japan is more about dating. Boyfriends and girlfriends go for expensive meals and go see the illuminations. Where as couples with children endulge in mass amounts of KFC. That’s right KFC but more on that later. It’s also becoming tradition for girls and guys to dress up in groups as Christmas based cosplay and have fun on the streets, this is a way that they can fight the cost of most restaurants course costs this time of year and also they can have fun in a group without the pressure of having to find a date.
There is a massive amount of pressure on younger japanese people to have a date for christmas, like imagine the prom then times that by 100, if you don’t have a date often you can be mocked by your peers so people get a bit crazy to find mr/mrs perfect. But with these new group hangouts people are starting to relax with the pressure which is a good thing.
So back to the KFC, back in the early 80’s the smart people at KFC’s marketing department made a commercial that depicted KFC as a christmas meal and since then it has become almost a tradition for the Japanese to share a bucket of chicken with their family, friends or, significant other on christmas day. Strange I know but to be fair to KFC they don’t just offer a bucket of chicken you can actually get a piece of turkey with gravy. This however comes at price and can cost anywhere from $40 - $100 which is a little bit ridiculous, but that is the cost of importing turkey I suppose. Oh and you also have to book this nostalgic turkey based dinner, upto a month prior to Christmas which is definitely listed as a first from Japan.
All in all, christmas in Japan is purely commercial there is no religious background for the Japanese people nor does the story of santa entering your home to leave presents really make much impact here. But what does make impact is christmas sales, illuminations, expensive meals and, good times. Which in a way is sort of nice.