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GaijinPot 2020 Cherry Blossom Contest — Contest Closed!

CONTEST HAS CLOSED ON APRIL 30, 2020. Win a pair of seven-day JR passes, shinkansen tickets and more! ???

  • COVID-19 update: Due to the current situation, rules to join the contest have been changed.
  • The contest is now closed. Winners will be announced May 15!
This year we’re encouraging everyone to share their sakura (cherry blossom) photos with us to uplift everyone’s spirits while they’re at home during the coronavirus outbreak. As beautiful as Japan’s sakura are, there will always be next year to go out and enjoy them.

Join our GaijinPot 2020 Cherry Blossom Contest by sharing your original sakura photos with us on Instagram from this year or previous years. Use #GaijinPotSakura2020 and #StayatHome when sharing your entries.

Not on Instagram? Not a problem. You can still win via our Facebook re-share contest.

GaijinPot 2020 Sakura in Japan Contest

Come on, who doesn’t want to win free Japan Rail passes?

Contest goes until when?

Submit your best, most creative sakura shots via Instagram with the hashtag #GaijinPotSakura2020  anytime from Tues, March 10 to Thurs, April 30. All will be considered for prizes. Want some inspiration? Here are the winning shots from last year.

How to enter?

On Instagram

Simply use #GaijinPotSakura2020 on your cherry blossom pictures and follow us @GaijinPot. Posts must be made publicly (no private accounts). We are looking for striking, artistic, and creative photos, no selfies!

On Facebook

Comment on our Giveaway post (which will be pinned to the top of the GaijinPot Facebook page) with your favorite sakura viewing spot in Japan and re-share the post publicly.

What are the prizes?

GaijinPot 2020 Sakura in Japan Contest

Oh, heyyy.

1. Grand prize: A pair of Shinkansen tickets

Zip across Japan with a friend like a boss with a pair of round-trip Shinkansen tickets to your destination of choice (within ¥50,000 for the pair). Claim it any time you want to whether it be later this year, next year or the year after that (just let us know). Wanna see the 2022 sakura from Sapporo to Osaka? Done. Planning to catch the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo? Say no more.

2. Exclusive GaijinPot Sakura Gift Box

The lucky second, third, and fourth prize winners of the Instagram photo contest will win a custom GaijinPot Sakura Gift Box filled with Japan-exclusive cherry blossom treats like this year’s seasonal Pocky, KitKat, Starbucks tumblers, and more.

3. Facebook Prize: Japan Rail Passes for two

The winner of the Facebook re-share gets a pair of seven-day Japan Rail Passes to use with a friend—a prize worth more than ¥50,000 (approx. USD$500)! Passes provided by JRPass.com.

3. International recognition 

Your photos will have a chance to be featured on our Best of 2020 GaijinPot Cherry Blossom feature and reposted to our more than 7 million combined followers and readers.

Contest Rules/Tips

Rules for your #GaijinPotSakura 2020 Instagram entry

Images should be:

  • Your own. It should be shot by you and only you!
  • From any time! You can reuse photos from previous years.
  • Real. Don’t post fake photos.
  • From Japan. Only posts from Japan will be accepted.
  • Tagged with a location. Don’t forget to tag the location of where it was shot.
  • Made Public. We need to be able to see it!

You must be following the GaijinPot Instagram to be considered.

Rules for your GaijinPot Facebook re-share entry

Comments and shares should be:

  • Made on our giveaway post here. The giveaway post will be pinned to the top of our Facebook page.
  • Made Public. We need to be able to see it!

You must like the GaijinPot Facebook page and re-share the giveaway post publically to be considered.


  • How many photos? Tag and submit as many photos on Instagram as you’d like! The more, the better.
  • What to shoot? We’re looking for stunning photography but we also encourage creative shots that haven’t been done before. Feel like dressing up in Sailor Moon cosplay in front of the flowers? Do it. Get weird, we like weird.
  • Can I still win if I am not a professional photographer? Heck yes! Sakura gift boxes will be chosen completely at random—so the more photos you tag, the more chances you have of winning.


To qualify you must:

  • Be a legal adult in both Japan and your home country.
  • Answer our direct message on Facebook and Instagram within a week of being selected.
  • Prize winners for the Japan Rail passes must qualify for the pass, according to the official rules of the JR pass. Read the rules here.
  • Prize winners must be able to supply their full name, address and contact info.
  • Prizes are not exchangeable for any cash value.

Plan your cherry blossom visit

Wanna look up when the blossoms are at peak bloom? Check our 2020 Cherry Blossom Forecast Map on the homepage of GaijinPot Travel. Looking for places to see the blossoms?  We got you. Use the page below to find the best locations to see cherry blossoms in Japan, including ones for Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo.

Where To See Cherry Blossoms In Japan

Good luck!  ?