Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Food Ticket Machines (しょっけん じどうはんばいき)

If you are a tourist and you are scared to death about the thoughts of ordering in Japan and avoid going out  to eat without your tour guide, why not go to those places with these ticket machine. Slot in your $$$, choose what you want to eat (there are usually pictures and even plastic food display to help you decide), get the ticket or tickets, pass it to the staff, sit down and voila! Food will be served with literally no requirement for you to open your mouth. 

We got this handled down pat. The not talking, I mean. Enter a restaurant, somebody will greet us and ask along this line : "nan-mei sama desu ka" - we just show with our hand how many in our party; which is 3, by the way. Pass our food ticket upon sitting down and wait for food to arrive. Who says its hard to be in Japan if you don't speak the language? If its not because I want to practice my horrible Japanese with those poor Japanese service staff, I think we'd get along just fine by using sign language! Just be suitably polite and no words are needed. That and of course the willingness to make an ass of oneself. LOL
Didn't stop to eat at this joint but they're sure cheap. I always tell my non-Muslim friends, for them to find inexpensive food in Japan is easy! They remain unconvinced still. :( Sometimes I wonder why people keep on harping about Japan being expensive but did not hesitate to travel all around Europe. Last time I checked, Euro is still higher than our RM. AUS$ isn't that cheap either.@.@
At one of our fave place to eat dinner. 

The machine has a picture of the food so it's easy to choose.  The restaurant has a food display too out in front so it's easy to make a decision before going in and buy our food tickets.

I got to try mozuku for the first time at this place. I've always wanted to try eating it after it was shown on Dosanko Cooking. ^^


  1. People are usually worried about how they are going to get by in Japan without mastering the language, but it is not hard with ticket machines like this. There is a picture description of the food so you can see what you are ordering and all you need to do is pay and collect your ticket. You just need to listen out for you number to be called, which they usually do with a digital counter on the wall. It is all pretty simple.

    Japan Australia

  2. @Japan Australia,
    The plastic food display helps too. Can't read the menu? No problem - just show what one wants to eat by pointing at the plastic food. I did that! ;P

  3. How did you like the mozuku? I enjoy this mozuku dish... very refreshing...

  4. @Lrong,
    I like it, A LOT. The tangy taste of vinegar with the mozuku is like you said, very refreshing.

    My hubby, ate them fine but wasn't too crazy about it. ^^

  5. I didn't think about this machine was written only in Japanese.Certainly the machine needs English or picture of the food.
    I often use it to eat cheap ramen.:)

  6. @cocomino,
    For me, no English is OK but I need some photos! ;p

    I noticed that one can really eat cheap with ramen. For us, ramen isn't an option. :(

  7. Wow. this is sure convenient!

  8. @Alice,
    It is! And kinda fun to experience too for us tourists. Just don't hog the machine and inconvenience others wanting to buy their ticket!

  9. Great idea using the point system..just point with finger and get what you need...easy.

  10. @Bananazஇ ,
    That work well for us too! But in our case, pointing had to come with some questions too - don't want to accidentally consume anything we are not supposed to! @.@

  11. I love these!!!! They're perfect for days I'm in a grumpy mood. Buy ticket. Give stub to waiter. Wait. Eat. Go. ;P
    Maybe sit and read for a bit too. ;)

  12. @Ri,
    Yeah, excellent place to not spoil the grumpy mood by having to talk nicely to people. XD

  13. Sometimes people should stop thinking or saying Japan as an expensive place to go to. Having been to the UK and other European countries let alone Australia, its expensive there too even if we had places to stay in the UK, eating out and even shopping is expensive least in Japan there places thats cheap to go to for eating and not all the places of interest charge compare kat UK. Expensive as some think, I think Japan has the best of everything too. I still definitely want to go there regardless of what my husband thinks ^^

  14. Forgot to mention I absolutely love watching Dosanko cooking, such simple easy method of cooking kan :)

  15. @cuteandcurls,
    It's all about one's perspective, right?

    Hubby still not interested in Japan? Takpe, try & brainwash him bit by bit. Zaini didn't want to buy the tickets to Japan this year, but see what I made him do? Tickets bought and hotels almost all are reserved for our Dec trip! And I didn't even nag! LOL

    I miss Dosanko cooking program. It opens my eyes on home-cooked style of Japanese food. Japanese food is more than raw fish! :)

  16. Yeah, the machine system is very convenient for tourists.
    If tourist wants to challenge popular food culture in cheap, I recommend Izakaya (Japanese style pub).

    1) go into a pub
    2) show staff head-counts by fingers
    3) say "Toriaezu beer!", "Nama de!" (Just beer for now. Draft! ).
    4) If staff ask you order of foods, say "Omakase shimasu"(leave foods up to staff's discretion)
    *almost pubs have a course menu.
    5) just drink, talk and sleep

    Remember the last train.

  17. Alamak all written in Japanese...
    How did you choose your dinner?

    So you know Hiragana?
    It's funny in Japanese.
    If you write all in Hiragana, it's kinda hard to read.
    But when you write all in Kanji. Same problem too.
    Writing in Japanese is a bit like yin and yang! Ha...
    The balance is very important.

  18. @birdmini,
    I've yet been to any Izakaya. :p

    Thanks for the tip, though. Maybe I could try it someday but I usually am afraid to say the "omakase" thing. Too afraid can't afford to pay the final bill! LOL

  19. @London Caller,
    Errr well, I can read Hiragana, but some of those vending machines have photo of the corresponding food at the button so it was quite easy to order. ^^

  20. Yep its all about one's perspective. For instance eating out in the UK, the only way i can get cheap food is at the pub or if the Chinese offer a reasonable buffet, Indian food kat sana quite expensive tau let alone Thai food haiii Malaysian food pun sama ..i remember i craved for piping hot frothy teh tarik ..found one an authentic Malaysian restaurant i nearly choked when i saw the price of the tea tarik ERKH!!
    Im trying my best to brainwash this hubby of mine so susah nak convince him if he tak nak so be it im gonna go on my own with the little one hehehe ive got friends there anyway who can take care of us. Dosanko cooking is just fabulous, simple yet delicious and fast and tu lah its got nothing to do with raw fish. AFC Channel is showing Dosanko cooking

  21. @cuteandcurls,
    Teh Tarik in Japan pun expensive tau! LOL

    Good for you on not being stuck not going to Japan if your hubby is not interested! I'm all for independent gals. :)

    Talking about all these food, I not that interested in Western food, so that's why yet to be too interested in going to any "Mat Salleh" places yet. I have a very Asian stomach. XD

  22. These are great except after major earthquakes. Sadly many of the shops were closed due to either no power or food had run out. I tried one place that was open the day after 3/11 but most of the items were not available and the machine wouldn't take my money for what was available.

    The one chain restaurant we ate at in Kyoto was really good even for vending. It was sit down. The standing ones I found out aren't always as good.

  23. @blukats,
    That's bad. It's hard for businesses when there are no supply (either electricity or food) and when there are no customers.:(

    I hope things get back to normal in most places by now.

    And I hope the restaurants have back-up plan if the vending machine won't accept notes. Otherwise, they are losing all the potential customers that came! o.O

    I always opted for a sit-down places. Not easy to eat standing up when you have a child along. For me, that is. I noticed though, the stand-up joint are mostly ramen places; which I avoid eating.

  24. Apasal lahhhhhhh teh tarik ni mahal sangat kat luar negeri i dont understand hehe speaking of teh tarik i do crave for that right now but ill have to wait lepas besalin ni :)

  25. @cuteandcurls,
    Because... they know we Malaysian crave teh tarik even when there are so many other choices! LOL

  26. OK will definitely try out these food ticket machines if I go Japan!

  27. LOL @ I wonder why people keep on harping about Japan being expensive but did not hesitate to travel all around Europe : D

  28. @foong,
    Yes! Try them! don't be scared entering strange restaurants. :)

    But don't you agree with my sentiment. People I know keep on flying to UK or Australia several times but never complain.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...