Tips & News

Of Course Japan Has Vending Machines Selling Flights to Mystery Destinations

More than 3,000 vending machine flights have been sold so far.

peach aviation

GETTY IMAGES

By Alison Fox

Nov 8, 2021

AN AIRLINE IN JAPAN is using vending machines to sell flights to mystery destinations — and it has become very popular. Peach Aviation first placed a machine in Osaka in mid-August as a marketing ploy, dispensing capsules with surprise trips inside, The Japan Times reported.

Since then, the airline has sold more than 3,000 capsules, including as many as 150 in a day, and set up a second vending machine in a department store in Tokyo’s Shibuya district.

Shuntaro Kosasa, the brand manager in the Peach Aviation branding and communication department, told the paper that many thought “promoting trips where travelers can’t choose the destination probably wouldn’t fly. We were thinking that it would be alright if we could sell one capsule per day… Yet the [machine] suddenly became hot… and we are really surprised.”

Each capsule costs ¥5,000 (or about US$44) and includes a piece of paper with a specific destination on it along with a promo code with points to be used toward the purchase of a ticket there. Most capsules contain codes for at least 6,000 points, which is equal to ¥6,000.

Destinations include popular hotspots throughout the country like Sapporo. The vending machine in Osaka offers people the chance of flights on 13 routes across Japan, while the machine in Tokyo offers the chance at 11 different routes from Narita Airport.

“Depending on the distance, it could be hit or miss, but it’s kind of exciting to let [the machine] decide the location and travel there,” one traveler who took a chance on the vending machine told The Japan Times. “I think this is a really interesting idea.”

Courtesy of @flypeach (3)

Even before Peach Aviation pioneered selling flights, Japan has long been known for the awesome stuff you can get in vending machines there. And in recent years around the world, vending machines have been used for everything from pecan pie to rare books and Champagne. Last year, McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas started selling PPE like gloves and masks out of vending machines. And this year, Oakland International Airport in California became the first airport in the United States to sell COVID-19 tests in vending machines.

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