SINGAPORE (THE NEW PAPER) - Hello Kitty fever is back, and fans of the popular Japanese character gave up their sleep to get hold of McDonald's limited-edition Hello Kitty carrier.
Singapore is the first country to get the meal carrier.
When The New Paper visited the McDonald's branch at Causeway Point at about 5am on Thursday (Nov 14), there were more than 150 people in line.
The queue started at midnight for the 7am launch.
Some customers re-joined the queue after meeting their limit of two carriers for each transaction.
A McDonald's spokesman said the carriers were sold out islandwide soon after 9pm on Thursday.
"We are truly humbled by the overwhelming support that we have received for our Hello Kitty carriers," the spokesman said, adding there are no plans to bring in additional stock.
A retiree, who wanted to be known only as Madam Lim, 60, queued up three times.
She told TNP: "I did not know what I was queuing for. At first I thought it was a Hello Kitty plush toy I could give to the kids in my family, but now that I know it's a holder, I don't know what to do with all of it."
A 50-year-old merchandiser, who wanted to be known only as Madam Wendy, braved the long queues for the limited-edition Hello Kitty and Dear Daniel dolls in different ethnic wedding costumes released 19 years ago.
On Thursday, she started queuing at 5am and got four carriers.
Said Madam Wendy: "I know there's not much use for the carrier, but it's so cute, so I thought to just buy it anyway.
"I queued for about three hours to get the 2000s dolls 19 years ago, but as people realised it was limited edition, fights started to break out. Of course this was before (online marketplace) Carousell came about."
Carousell saw users taking pre-orders and payments on Wednesday, the day before the carriers' launch. Some users are selling the $7.90 product for as much as $50 on the site.
According to Chinese language newspaper Shin Min Daily News, Taiwanese tourist Shui Yang Jun joined the queue at Aljunied McDonald's at 5am.
His sister, Ms Joyce Zhang Jia Yu, 37, who works in the service industry, told Shin Min her brother came to Singapore to visit her 12 days ago.
Mr Shui, 45, queued for about five hours to get eight Hello Kitty carriers for his four sisters.
Mr Bryan Leong, 35, was first in line at the McDonald's outlet in Punggol Safra. He went with a foldable chair at 4am.
"The queue was organised, signs were clear and the staff were kind enough to offer water and coffee to those lining up."
But Mr Amerul Hidayat, 23, who queued at the Causeway Point outlet with his girlfriend, found lining up frustrating.
"It's quite annoying to have people cutting queues. One person in front of us can suddenly turn into one whole family."