Convenient but controversial: Japan's 24/7 stores

By Natsuko Fukue and Anne Beade

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A big part of the problem seems to be the lack of caution on the part of franchisers when handing out new licences. New stores appear all the time, often within throwing distance of another store. No wonder they can't sustain the 24/7 model.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Keep those stores open. They are one of the reasons Japan is a comfortable and convenient place to live. What about shift workers, nurses etc they all need to buy supplies after work. Don't change this excellent system.

As ever, you find yourself on the wrong side of the debate.

Yes, Japan is convenient, but in large parts of the country, conbini are deserted at night. And while it may inconvenience a few shift workers, they do not all rely upon them, and those that do can still make alternative arrangements and do what people in other parts of the world do.

It does not mean that every conbini would close at midnight, but those that are not economically viable at night.

You could suggest alternatives, such as yourself taking up one of these lowly paid night jobs at a conbini, or being willing to pay much higher prices at all times in conbini to subsidise the few shift workers who can't be bothered to buy a beer and onigiri in advance.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In the cities, any dense urban area where there is foot traffic at all times, it makes sense to keep 24-hour stores.

In the outskirts, rural areas, parts of the city that shut down at night, have most all of the stores keep train line hours. They close after the last trains and open before the first trains the following morning. Additionally. still have one shop in any given area chosen to remain 24-hours in case of an emergency (national or personal). Preferably the one with the most amenities.

I live near a station where you can literally take a 100 meter walk in a certain area and see five different FamilyMarts along the route. The companies that own these stores might be justified to have that kind of density during the day, but at night they could have all but one or two of them close. The local franchisees can get together to decide who is open and who is closed and even take turns staying open at night to make it fair for everyone.

There are many different ways to go about this that a blanket “shut down everything!” policy in response to a single edge case.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Ganbare Japan, what do you think people did before 24/7 stores? I and my parents had no problem living without them. Many people still do. How about people brown bag it or is it too much trouble to make your own meals for work. I got a better idea, stop overworking people and allow them to have a life.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Even in countryside, 24/7 is needed.

When family is having quarrel at night, When people feel lonely, When u don't feel sleepy, When someone is lost, When someone is having a rough night, When a vehicle is broke down, When someone don't have condom in their room,

Then u go there and enjoy your little time that might feel u so good the next day or probably become a good starting story of your life.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Keep those stores open. They are one of the reasons Japan is a comfortable and convenient place to live. What about shift workers, nurses etc they all need to buy supplies after work. Don't change this excellent system.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

The reality is there isn't enough foot traffic from 1AM to 6AM to necessitate 24-7 operation for many stores. Of course, in heavily populated areas like Shibuya, you can justify having a 24-7 store, but for those out in suburban areas, it may be better to have those stores close after 11PM or 12AM.

The argument about requiring 24-7 stores for cleaning and restocking the stores, or waiting for deliveries is nonsense. They already do those things throughout the day.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

There was nothing controversial about them until the one store owner decided to regulate operating hours.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

People should show some sympathy for these store owners and change their shopping habits. I can not see a need to shop for anything after 8pm. Japan relies too much on a convenient life. No pun intended.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

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