Let’s review ZenPop, a Japanese snack subscription box. We love trying new savoury snacks, Japanese candy and ramen. So when we found out about ZenPop we had to share our experience with you.
For our Zenpop snack box review, we will be basing it on a few factors:
- How many snacks do you get in it
- What’s the balance between sweet and savoury snacks as we unbox
- The theme of this Japanese candy and ramen box
- Value for money in terms of price and shipping
- Quick taste test and who would it be good for
- Is it worth it for you
As the Japanese snacks selection you’ll get will be different for every month, these points might not be the same as your subscription box. However, you can use our Zenpop review factors as a general guide for what to expect.
ZenPop Unboxing Video
Watch our quick 5-minute review and unboxing of ZenPop Japan on YouTube now.
What's inside a Zenpop Japan Box?
On their website, they mention that you’ll get at least 20 or more things to try. In our Zenpop Japanese subscription box, we received 21 snacks, including 1 drink and 1 ramen.
We love that we recognised a few snacks from convenience stores and Japanese supermarkets since it brought back our memories of working in Japan. However, we also liked how there was a good selection of snacks we hadn’t tried before. There were also a number of seasonal treats which kept it fun and interesting.
The amount of snacks is a good size so it should last at least two sessions of junkie munching. If you want to share this box with someone else, just bear in mind that most items don’t come in twos. We've been snacking on this box for the past month so it definitely lasts a while.
We also got a 6-page guide to tell us a little more about some Japanese cultural events happening this month and what other boxes they offer. The guide is well-themed with their bunny mascot participating in related activities to the month's theme or festivities.
There wasn't much information about each snack inside the guide. However, the guide does tell you what the theme is. There’s also a QR code in the guide and inside of the box to help you find out more on their website.
However, we did notice that allergens weren't updated as soon as we got the box. So if you have specific allergens and dietary requirements you will have to rely on Google Translate to understand the original packaging.
Sweet vs Savoury
Since this is a mystery Japanese snack box, it took us a bit of time to figure out which one is savoury and sweet. But in total, we received 7 savoury and 12 sweet types of snacks.
We’d say it was relatively balanced, given the size of the savoury snacks being larger than the sweet ones.
We’ve tried loads of Japanese snack subscription boxes at this point, so we’re quite used to packages being based on festivals, regions in Japan and seasons.
However, we’ve never seen a Japanese snack box based on ASMR before. So it was a refreshing angle for us and a really fun way to enjoy these ZenPop snacks. The cute bunny mascot also added a lovely touch to the whole experience.
Since it was our first box, we didn’t have much to go by. So instead, we looked back at their previous boxes to see if their themes were always this unique. Some that stood out to us were their Ghibli Nostalgia and Kawaii Snacks theme box.
When you read about each snack online, each nibble relates to the theme so well. We noticed it was usually something fun and trendy that was happening in Japan or had to do with popular anime and manga series. Their descriptions also feel very young and light-hearted.
Overall, it was a fun experience munching on these nibbles.
Shipping and Pricing
Our Zenpop Japanese subscription box was ordered at the start of the month and arrived within 2 weeks. Within our box, we did get one snack that was slightly crushed, but it still tasted great.
From looking at other people’s reviews online and on Reddit, this didn’t seem like a recurring issue for other customers, so to keep our ZenPop review fair to the brand, we’re going to say it was a one-off.
Price-wise, it’s within a similar range to other Japanese snack boxes we’ve tried, and of course, if you subscribe for longer, the cheaper it becomes per box.
Considering that ZenPop is based in Osaka, Japan and is a smaller company, we understand why it's a few dollars extra. That being said, it’s a pretty good deal if you’re in the US, as ZenPop Japan offer their Japanese snacks with free shipping, so it works out a little cheaper than other popular brands.
In terms of shipping, if you’re outside the US, you’ll need to pay a shipping fee and potentially import tax. However, this is quite common for a lot of snack box subscription services that are based in Asia.
The ZenPop snacks we tried were strong-flavoured and distinct from each other. So if you love your snacks to be more flavourful and richer in general, this would be great for you.
Who would this Japanese subscription box be good for?
If you’re buying this as a gift, it would definitely suit a younger crowd or someone who loves anime, manga, cute things, or the quirky side of Japan. It's a cute box that had our hearts melting over the adorable bunny mascot and different illustrations throughout the guide. Even as adults, this Zenpop box will win your inner Shojo (young girl) over.
Is it worth it?
The ZenPop snack box is worth it if you like surprises and keeping things different. It’s good value for money, the snack selection has a good balance of seasonal treats and the classics. However, the biggest selling point for us is that the themes are creative and refreshing.
We’d definitely consider subscribing to them for the long term.
Check out our other Japanese snack box review on Sakuraco vs Tokyo Treat.
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