Unfortunately, I’m not off to Japan, but I am going to Hawaii to attend my cousin’s destination wedding. A couple of my uncles, aunts, and cousins will be flying in from Japan! I’m so excited since I don’t get to see them very often.
When you visit someone in Japan [business, homestay, etc], it is customary to bring some sort of gift [omiyage] for your host. My friends and I all agree that the hardest part of going to Japan is trying to gather up all your gifts for every single member of your family, packing it up within all the weight restrictions, and trying to figure out how you’re going to fit your clothes into your suitcase. It’s great being on the receiving end, not so great when you have to figure out what to give.
Something from your hometown is always nice [like See's Candy from Southern California]. I rely on food items because that’s what I like the most. I have friends who buy big ticket items for their family – jewelry, handbags, clothes, electronics, and the like. I’m the poor relation so I make sure that I keep it on the cheap. As you can see from my photo above, I tend to stick with whatever I can find at Trader Joe’s…and some sort of nuts [my cousins love pistachios].
I always wonder what types of LIGHT and SMALL items people could give as gifts to their hosts? Do you bring an “omiyage”? I know a lot of my food blogger friends will bake stuff up & bring that along as gifts. What do you bring with you??