Valentine’s Day? More Like Galentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day in Japan is a billion yen industry, the focus on making things “just right” for your sweetheart being almost fanatical at times. Major companies start advertising their select seasonal chocolates at least a month in advance, department stores hold special events selling only the most premium of goodies, and of course, lingerie stores start having special sales for those “added perks.”

But what if you’re not interested in a dating kind of Valentine’s Day? Recently single? Or just want to kick back with some friends and enjoy the day?

Valentine’s Day in Japan

On a traditional Valentine’s in Japan, women are expected to give chocolates to almost every man in their lives.

Basically, there are two main different types of chocolates you can offer on Valentine’s Day. Honmei choco (本命チョコ true love chocolates) are for the person you’re serious about. On the other hand, giri choco (義理チョコ obligation chocolates) are for co-workers or even your boss – the idea being that you feel obligated to give these chocolates.

(Psst, if you would like to know more about traditional Valentine’s Day in Japan, you can have a look right here!)

Lately, a third type of chocolate has rapidly become the norm among Japanese younger generations. Tomo choco (友チョコ) is short for “friend chocolates” or treats you will share with your friends. They can be handmade, store-bought or a combination of the two!

They aren’t necessarily only edible treats either. Generally speaking, tomo choco are small tokens of appreciation for your friends. In other words, if you want to celebrate Galentine’s Day, tomo choco are exactly what you’re after for!

Tomo choco? Check! What now?

How will you spend your special day with your friends?

You can spend the day in any way you’d like, but if you’re interested in seeing some of …continue reading