Feb 14th Exploring Japan’s Unique Valentine’s Day Customs and Culture

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Did you know that on Valentine’s Day in Japan, women give chocolates to men?

However, there are rules to follow and types of chocolate to choose.

This time, we will delve into the culture of Valentine’s Day in Japan, focusing on the custom of giri choco.

We will also introduce points and manners that you should be aware of when visiting Japan on Valentine’s Day.

Let’s deepen your understanding of Valentine’s Day, which is a unique Japanese culture, as soon as possible.

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Exploring the Cultural Origins of Valentine’s Day in Japan

The origin of Valentine’s Day in Japan is not fully elucidated.

There is also a theory that a confectionery company adopted it as a marketing strategy in the 1950s.

There are also theories that it originated in popular culture and comics.

In any case, giving chocolates on Valentine’s Day has become a widely recognized custom in Japan.

To understand Japanese Valentine’s Day customs, it is important to distinguish between two types of chocolate: Giri choco and Honmei choco.

Giri choco is a chocolate given by a woman to someone she doesn’t know well, such as her co-workers, bosses, or family members.

Honmei choco is given by women to people they are in a relationship with or are in love with.

Giri-choco is usually commercially available, while honmei-choco is handmade.

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The Unique Habit of Giri Choco

“Giri” refers to chocolates that women give as a courtesy on Valentine’s Day.

It is said to express gratitude for the support of people who have taken care of you throughout the year, as well as your partner and family.

Giri choco is usually sold commercially and is usually given in a beautiful box or wrapped in decorative wrapping paper.

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Points to note when visiting Japan on Valentine’s Day

If you plan to visit Japan during the Valentine’s Day season, there are a few things to keep in mind.

First of all, chocolate is not meant to be eaten right away, but is generally given as a token of gratitude.

Therefore, it is polite to take the chocolate home with you or put it in a special place so that you remember it as a gift.

Second, if you receive a gift, it is important not to forget to return it.

Finally, Japan has a culture of privacy, so it’s important to be cautious when giving or receiving chocolate.

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Valentine’s Day Manners in Japan

Valentine’s Day etiquette in Japan is as important as the chocolate itself.

There are etiquettes such as thanking the person who gave you chocolate, returning the gift with a thank-you gift, and being polite when receiving a gift.

Also, giri choco is generally given one-on-one. For example, women may give chocolates to their co-workers or the whole family.

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Valentine’s Day in Japan is a unique cultural blend of traditional and modern practices.

Remember that chocolate is not meant to be eaten right away, and etiquette is important both when giving and receiving.

When visiting Japan on Valentine’s Day, please keep these points in mind and have a great time.


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