Ever wondered if you could purchase anything decent for under a pound in the UK? Do you think that we are rip off Britain,  well PUN have sent two researchers of around the world to see what they can buy for 80 Pence, there's nothing quite like playing FTSE underneath the table.

Dawne B Stewart was set the challenge of being "Miss Frugal", in the Land of the Rising Sun… JAPAN.
I squealed with delight for this challenge as I'm a girl who loves a bargain!! I felt I’d reached 'Bargain City', when I discovered DAISO Japan affectionately known as the 100Yen Shop.
Bear in mind however, that the Japanese are very much into every latest mod con and gadgets, it's a place where high tech is the 'standard', for example, in my hotel bathroom the toilet seat is heated or when the bathroom mirror steams up, one section remains steam free.  Another example is that the handheld card machines are digitised, let me explain, the numbers appear on a 'screen' once I enter my four digits PIN, and then press ENTER; the numbers are then scrambled to appear in a different place. Why oh why does the UK not have this system, it would spare the balancing act of trying to hold the machine, your purse (if you're a woman) and shield for cover from fear of someone spying on your PIN. Anyhow, I completely digress…………
Don't be mistaken Japan's 100Y shops are nothing like UK's £1 shop (well maybe a little).  But the 100Yen shop has absolutely everything for the home, garden, health & beauty pampering stuff, gifts, toys, stationery, Japanese memorabilia, food stuffs, small clothing items, you name it its there. Think Wilko's but everything (well the majority of products) are 100Yen - 80p.
So here's just a few of the things I bought for 80pence, that I didn't realise I needed ('',) 
  • Draw Dividers
  • Wardrobe Organisers i.e. Belt, tie & scarf holder
  • A car shopping bag carrier, slips over my headrest to hold the shopping bag!!
  • Long boots inserts, to stop them flopping over in my newly organised wardrobe 
  • Birthday card & gift box
  • Body scrub, head wrap and face masks (pack of 5) for my Spa day
  • Baggage strap and luggage tag
  • Fingerless gloves
  • 2 pairs of thick coloured tights
  • Vitamins (packs of 20)
  • Collagen Face Spritz
  • Wasabi Salad Dressing
  • Mascara
  • Green Tea
  • Highlighter Pens (pack of 5)
Oh... Ok, I'm looking like a shopaholic, I could go on, but you get my drift…DAISO aka 100Y shops stocks pretty much everything.  However, at not such a good deal, 80pence in Japan will also get you:
  • Alcohol, third of a pint of beer, 50ml of wine!
  • Cigarettes around 5
  • 45sec phone call to the UK
  • Half of a bus journey and if you take a taxi, the driver will not drive off for less than £8!
Japanese Yen is the third most traded currency beneath USD ($) and Euro (€). Pound Sterling GBP (£) is fourth.

Article by Dawne B / 11th April 2012


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Around the World on 80p