How it works
1. How does swapping work?
At swaps in general, you can donate used items (clothes, accessories, small home decor items) and in return, receive items for free. Each of our events are different depending on whether they are online or offline, a small gathering of swappers or a large swap shop. You can have a look at the event description to understand the specifics, or feel free to contact us.
2. Why do we charge for donations?
- For online swaps
- Cost of shipping & handling: Our give away fee includes the cost of shipping so that you can donate all your items together, hassle free. No need to find a buyer, sell each individual item, fill forms in Japanese, etc. You will just need to put your items into the shipping kit we send you and drop it off at your nearest convenience store.
- Swap Points: Every item you donate also gets you Swap Points which you can spend on anything in our online store. These aren't just minute discounts on expensive products - the Swap Points you get are enough to get several products totally free.
- To minimize waste: Traditional thrift / charity stores accept donations free of charge, which creates a new problem: these stores become dumping grounds and generate a large amount of waste. This waste is then sent to landfills in developing countries, becoming a major source of pollution. By charging donors, we encourage them to donate their best items that other swappers would love, also minimizing waste.
- Cost of managing the donations: We try to balance the number of donations coming in with the items going out. Oftentimes, however, the volume of donations is large. Responsibly giving away the remaining pieces involves a cost - we typically ship these to a preferred recycling store or an NPO. Recently, we have been using Furugi de vaccine, an NPO that sells used clothes to raise money for vaccines in developing countries.
3. Can you also swap in person?
Yes, absolutely. We run swap events in Tokyo approximately every two months, and we are also looking to organize events in other cities. At swap events, you can meet others like you who are interested in sustainability and zero waste living. Follow us on Instagram @swapstories.jp to stay updated.