Thursday, December 03, 2009

More random gifts

I don't think I will ever get used to the completely random gifts I get given in Japan. Earlier in the week we went to look at a new car for me - my current one is about to die and because it is over 13 years old the government will give a reasonable subsidy if we buy a brand new one before March. We are still very much just looking and thinking, but as we were leaving we were given bags of gifts - not the usual tissues and green tea, but potatoes and spring onions! Why a car sales yard would give away potatoes and spring onions is beyond me, but I guess I should be grateful that they are things that can actually be used. I hate to think what they might give us if we actually decide to sign on the dotted line.....


  1. are you considering a brand new car, or a used car?

  2. Hi Illahee... in order to get the subsidy we need to buy a brand new car (something I have never ever thought about in my life!) so we are weighing up the options. Any ideas?

  3. nice...i got a free, custom-drilled bowling ball when i went to sing karaoke a few months ago...that tops the scale of random gifts in my experience so far...i have to think potatoes would have been more useful though...

  4. Anonymous10:31 PM

    Hi Jo
    you don't know me but I have been enjoying your blog for a few months now. I'm Irish and live in Osaka with my Japanese husband and four children. I just bought a Toyota Sienta to replace the two cars we used to have...a Toyota Ipsum (his) and a Suzuki Kei (mine) . He wasn't really interested so I did all the leg work. I picked the Sienta because it's small enough to use every day...and still can seat 7. My advice would be to get quotes from smaller garages...not just the main dealer. I saved a lot of money ..and got exactly what I wanted put in it by getting quotes from 3 dealers on the same car. The Toyota dealer wouldn't come down too much.....but the smaller dealers will try harder to get you to buy from them. I eventually bought from a Mazda garage...when I told them I had decided to get the Sienta and not a Mazda they asked to let them give me a quote. can also look up the amount of discount you should be aiming for online ( "car name nebiki" in the search engine). Maybe your husband knows a lot about it...mine wouldn't never have tried to bargain the price down. I think I did really well...
    never got any potatoes though!
    Oh one other thing...some of the cars take weeks to actually get after you order them you'd better not leave it too late if you want to make the march deadline. Our cars were both 11 years old so we didn't get the full subsidy...but 100,000 is nothing to sneeze at. They apply for the subsidy when the car is registered.
    Hope that was helpful

  5. Casey - I think you take the cake when it comes to gifts... a bowling ball??? I'm thinking maybe I should be appreciating my potatoes a little more!
    Denise, thanks for commenting and thanks for the information too. When we asked how long it would take to actually get the car if we did order it we were told that it wouldn't be made until at least the end of January - which is why we need to get a move on and decide! Fortunately my husband is a bit of a maniac when it comes to getting the cheapest deal so has already gone to a few different dealers etc. to try and get the best price. Only one has given us potatoes though! Hopefully a decision will be made soon and I can dream about driving somewhere in the summer without the car overheating as soon as I turn the air conditioning on!

  6. Ooooh, how exciting. Shall I come and visit so you can check the car out for 'new car' value. The Honda step wagon is great. The alphard is better but about 100 man more!! shite!! You need an 8 seater for all your visitors and things. Toyota does one too - the Voxy or something.