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13 bizarre vending machines from around the world

Who needs crisps and fizzy drinks when you can get live crabs, crack pipes and morning after pills?

IF YOU THINK vending machines are only stocked with crisps, chocolate and fizzy drink, think again. These days, vending machines distribute all sorts of goods from cupcakes to crabs, burritos to caviar, and sneakers to crack pipes.

We rounded up some of the most unique vending machines we could find from all over the world.


In cities like New York City, Los Angeles, and Dallas, you can walk up to a 24-hour sidewalk cupcake-dispensing machine and purchase a delicious cupcake with your credit card.

Source: Sprinkles Cupcakes via YouTube

Live crabs

Don’t like cupcakes? In China, live hairy crabs can be purchased from a vending machine at a main subway station in Nanjing. It’s the first live crab vending machine in China (surprising, we know) and sells an average of 200 live crabs daily. Yum.

Source: Associated Press via YouTube


In many places in the world, including hotel lobbies in some countries, customers can purchase gold straight from a vending machine.

Source: Marko Kudjerski via Flickr


Colgate delivered some health help with this vending machine installed in Puerto Rico. Along with the purchased candy, customers got a free tube of toothpaste while the LED screen read “Don’t forget to brush!”

Source: Y&R Digital | Puerto Rico/YouTube

Crack pipes

On the other end of the healthy spectrum, customers can use a vending machine to buy crack pipes for 25 cents in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighborhood. Put in place as a public service, these new pipes are meant to replace old ones which can shatter and cut a user, which leads to the spread of diseases.

Source: NextNewsNetworl via YouTube

Morning after pills

In a another controversial move, Pennsylvania’s Shippensburg University introduced a vending machine which dispenses Plan B medication, also known as the “morning-after pill,” after a survey showed that 85% of students supported it. Other schools, like Pomona College, have followed suit.


Sick of eating only candy and junk food from your vending machines? Why don’t you have a salad…in a jar? Farmer’s Fridge, a startup in Chicago, makes the salads, which start at $8, fresh daily and serves them in an airtight jar.

Source: Farmer's Fridge

Second-hand goods

This vending machine in Brooklyn allows you to trade-in your unwanted goods in exchange for something new, with no cash changing hands. Called the “Swap-o-matic,” it was created to shift consumers thinking towards more sustainable practices of buying and selling goods.


Feeling luxurious? Head over to this Los Angeles mall where you can buy some caviar, ranging from $5 to $500 for an ounce.

Source: dj venus via Flickr


And then why not goand grab some Moët & Chandon from this London vending machine to go with your caaviar. It’ll run you £17 for one of these mini-bottles, but hey, you’re worth it.


In Hangzou, China, you can walk up to a massive vending machine and rent a car for a little over $3 an hour. The cars can only reach a top speed of 50 mph but they cut down on the massive air pollution in China by running off an electric motor.

Source: Aaron Rockett/YouTube

Emergency footwear

If you’ve ever worn painful high heel shoes all night long, you’ll understand the need for this vending machine. It dispenses soft, comfy shoes that buyers in California and Las Vegas can swap for their stilettos at the end of a long party.

Dog food

This innovative vending machine in Turkey dispenses water and dog food in a trough when you insert a plastic bottle for recycling. The service is provided free of charge and the company that created the machine says the recycled bottles offset the price of dog food.

Source: Imsire/YouTube

And just because we came across this and couldn’t resist sharing it with you all, here’s a bonus video of a monkey buying juice from a vending machine. Look at his happy little face:

Source: Laugh2LiveTV/YouTube

- Christian Storm.

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