Japan Hunting - Tips

You can leave a tip at my paypal account at...........

Okay, fine, not that type of tip. But here are my top ten useful pieces of information from my experiences Transformer hunting in Japan.

1. Search every store you think might have something. While the guides are meant to provide you with a few must see places for toys, they aren't the be all end all places and there are a number of toy shops not listed. So go in, take a quick peak, if you don't see anything then leave. You flew all the way here, might as well go in.

2. Most vintage stores don't take to well with haggling, on the most part what you see as the sticker price is what you pay.

3. Go with a fixed budget and do your homework ahead of time in regards to the prices you are willing to pay. That said buy either a pocket wifi or a sim card which can be done from here bmobile.Not only does it make finding all these stores SO much easier, it also allows you to double check other avenues of acquiring the item before purchasing to see if you are in fact getting a deal.

4. Especially for vintage hunting, if you see a good deal and you want it I would advise on buying it. Items get sold very quickly especially if they are at a good price. In fact there are a number of people who go into these stores specifically for the purpose of buying and then reselling to other countries and vintage shops in other countries.

5. For vintage figures, check the contents, most places are willing to open up the box to show you (normally there's a sticker on the box that explains the condition) but inspect it yourself before buying.

6. Yahoo Japan Auctions can be your friend, find a proxy service such as http://www.fromjapan.co.jp/ and you can sometimes find yourself some real good deals without even leaving the comfort of your own home/country.

7. You can bring a "wants list" but because of the varying nature of the inventory, you may not find what you want but instead find something you didn't even know you wanted. So be flexible, but not wasteful. I've heard it from a number of friends that have bought something for the sake of buying something.

8. As a slight contradiction to #7, buy something. I love taking trips and seeing new countries but I always like to purchase something special in each country (no, not like those I heart NY type souvenirs) but something that when I look back I will always remember where I got it and have a story to tell others about acquiring it. This doesn't necessarily have to be a Transformer though.

9. Bring enough suit cases. Seriously, buying luggage there just for the sake of bringing toys back ads to the cost. There is the option of shipping it back but again, adding to the cost.

10. Remember, it's not just about toys. I've heard some friends recount their time in Japan and literally it's just toy hunting. Yes that's fun but there's just so much more to see and do in Japan that it's almost criminal to not experience other things. Mind you after your 3rd or 4th trip then maybe you can make it all about the toys. However if this is your first time going, set a couple days for toy hunting and let that be it.

11. Yeah sue me I know I said top 10 but this is important too. If you are going with your significant other and he/she isn't into toy hunting. At the very least plan for things to see and do before after or during your toy hunting so he/she isn't bored to death and nags you about spending your entire vacation looking for toys. Learned this lesson the hard way..........(half kidding on that)

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