WHY !?!? Christmas in Japan !?

Bonjour tout le monde !  Je m’appelle Yuki.

In Japan, Christmas is so much different from the one in western culture. Japanese people have found their own unique way of celebrating Christmas which might be very weird for people living in western culture. Today, I would like to share some of them. I hope you enjoy it.

  1. A romantic day that you spend with your boy/girl friend

In contrast to western culture, in which it is common to have a night with families and have gorgeous dinner at home, in Japan, Christmas is a day to celebrate with your boyfriend or girlfriend. If you have a girlfriend, you plan how to give her a romantic night on Christmas and if you don’t have one, you work or cry on the day. Among young people, if you are single on Christmas, you are considered to be little lonely and miserable. Therefore, people often say that “Christmas is coming soon!! I have to get a boyfriend/girlfriend!!”.

There are lots of jokes and memes about people who spend Christmas without a boy/girl friend

On Christmas, it is very common for couples to go see Christmas lights on streets and therefore, cities are filled with couples. They eat dinner at French or Italian restaurant because Christmas is a western culture and we want to celebrate it with western food, plus we think having a date at French/Italian restaurant is romantic. (In fact, of course not on Christmas but also, even in general, nobody really takes his girlfriend to sushi restaurant)

2. Merry KFC Christmas !!

  Every Christmas season, an estimated 3.6 million Japanese families treat themselves to fried chicken reportedly. Yes, it might be very odd for you, but a lot of people order KFC on Christmas and make a long line at the store.

As Christmas culture became well known in Japan around 1970’s, KFC took the marketing plan, “クリスマスにはケンタッキー“, which literally means, “KFC on Christmas” and it has been a huge success. I suppose that as Japanese people did not have any idea of how to spend a Christmas at that time, they believed KFC dinner is the way to properly celebrate the night in western culture. To be honest, I love having KFC on Christmas and I have no idea how to spend the day without KFC this year.

Yuki Asada

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