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Why Snack Subscription Boxes Are Worth It: A Review of Bokksu

After saving up some money, I’ve finally been able to splurge a little and buy a subscription to a monthly snack box! While thousands exist, I ordered from Bokksu, a Japanese company that advertises itself as being “the only Japanese snack box that partners with 100+-year-old family snack makers to deliver Japan-exclusive snacks to your door!” I had thought about buying a subscription for some type of snack box for a while and I looked at brands such as Universal Yums, SnackCrate and TokyoTreat. In the end, after doing some math, Bokksu seemed to hold the most value to me with the products provided.

My purchase

I ended up ordering a 3-month subscription of their “Tasting Box” which includes 10-14 snacks per box and a 20+ page “Culture Guide” magazine which explains all the products in detail, including their ingredients, any potential allergens and what region they come from. There are sweet and savoury snacks in each box which is perfect if you’re someone who craves contrasting flavours in the middle of the night. Each box also has a theme that changes monthly. Unfortunately, the subscription cost is written in USD, so it does end up being more expensive than it looks. For a 3-month subscription in Canada, it ended up being about $100 CAD, with $34 per box. The good news is that there is free shipping (maybe meant to help us forget the high price).

Subscriptions

There are three options available: a 1-month subscription, a 3-month subscription, and a 12-month subscription. In terms of value, the 12-month subscription ends up saving you money in the long run since each box becomes cheaper in longer subscriptions. On the other end, the 1-month subscription is the most expensive box, but since you’d only be buying one box, the cost is a lot lower than a 12-month subscription with 12 boxes. It all depends on you and what you’re willing to spend. The 3-month subscription seemed to fit me best in terms of cost and the length of the subscription.

Comparisons

As previously mentioned, I looked at other brands before choosing Bokksu. The other possibility was mainly Universal Yums. I had seen their ads before, and it was them that originally made me want a snack box. The difference between Universal Yums and Bokksu is that Universal Yums sends out snacks from a different country each time whereas Bokksu sends out Japanese snacks exclusively. I looked at Universal Yums’ “Yum Box,” which includes 6 snacks at $21 CAD per box and compared it to Bokksu’s “Tasting Box.” Both Universal Yums’ “Yum Box” and Bokksu’s “Tasting Box” are the brands’ respective smallest boxes. Universal Yums seems amazing but also seems like it could be a bit of a hit or miss depending on the country the snacks come from and whether or not you like that type of food. Shipping was also $3, but since each box was only $21, the total cost for a 3-month subscription of Universal Yums’ “Yum Box” would still be cheaper than a 3-month subscription of Bokksu’s “Tasting Box.” However, for Bokksu, the cost turned out to be about $2.40-3.40 per snack, whereas for Universal Yums, the cost was $3.50 per snack, which to me was too much. Sure, in the long run, it was cheaper than Bokksu, but it was the principle of per snack cost that mattered to me.

Thoughts after the first box

Finally, the review: I loved it, no question. It’s been my best purchase so far. The box is bright orange with Bokksu written in bold in the centre. On the sides it says, “Discover Japan through snacks” and everything is placed delicately inside with colours popping out as you open the box for the first time. My box’s theme was all about mochi, a Japanese rice cake. Some of the snacks offered were curry cashew nuts, fried kakinotane, mikan mochi and puru mochi. My absolute favourite was the first thing I tried, fujiya nectar peach mochi. It’s a small and sweet peach snack with a small filling in the centre that melts in your mouth. My least favourite snack, the one-bite wagashi matcha warabi mochi, tasted like a sweet green tea but it had a very strange texture. I can only describe it as having a jello-like texture, but it was not jello. Every snack was something I’d never tried before and I loved each one, even the one-bite wagashi matcha warabi mochi, despite the texture.

I especially love the little magazine Bokksu provides because it eliminates the language barrier on the snacks so that you know what you’re eating. It wasn’t just an English translation of the words, the magazine described the cultural aspects of the snacks, where they’re made/found and offered the pronunciation of each snack as well. Bokksu’s website also includes detailed descriptions of each snack.

Promo codes

ADDICTION – For $5 off

SPRINGKITKATS – For Japanese Kit Kats (only available for 3-month and 12-month subscriptions)

Note that only one promo code is valid per purchase, so sadly you’ll have to choose between $5 off and free Kit Kats.

I love trying new things, so an international snack subscription box seemed like the perfect purchase and it was! If you’re thinking about buying one but you’re unsure about whether or not you’d like a snack subscription box, you can purchase a 1-month subscription or split the cost with a friend and try the snacks together. I know that I’ll probably continue my subscription in the future, but in the meantime, I’m excited for the next box.

Nadica Terzieva

Wilfrid Laurier '23

Nadica is a second year sociology, English and French student with a passion for languages and the arts. She loves to travel and lives for live concerts. When she isn't downing French vanilla coffees, you can find her typing away at her laptop.
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