Couple win praise for returning $13,400

The couple from China notified the money changer of the mistake in its calculation and returned the excess amount.
The couple from China notified the money changer of the mistake in its calculation and returned the excess amount.PHOTO: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS

When they received 65,700 yuan (S$13,400) extra due to a money changer's mistake, an honest couple from China returned the cash to the Chinatown outlet and were lauded for their action.

The couple had asked to exchange 207,300 yuan to Singapore dollars at the Crante Money Changer at People's Park Complex last Saturday.

The money changer mistakenly keyed in 273,000 yuan, converting it as S$55,600 and handing the couple S$13,400 extra in cash, Shin Min Daily News reported yesterday.

The man said in a post on Chinese social media platform WeChat that he called the money changer once they returned home and found out about the mistake.

"I hurriedly called them and they hadn't even realised. When I told them about it, they checked their records and thanked us, saying they had run into good people," he wrote. "My daughter proudly said: 'No need to thank us, we are Chinese.'."

According to his post, they returned the money a day later.

A partner at the money changer, Ms Huang Suzhen, told Shin Min that the couple, who are in their 30s, are her regular customers.

Ms Huang, 52, said her staff were all moved by the couple's good deed, and one employee even bought the pair bak kwa (barbecued meat) as a thank-you gift. The employee who made the mistake was someone with more than 20 years of experience.

Ms Lang Shean, a 38-year-old money changer at Marina Square's Silver River Money Changer, told The Straits Times it is common for customers to return money when given more by mistake. But she has not encountered having such a large amount returned.

"Recently, there were a few times when customers returned money," said Ms Shean, who has worked in the business for 10 years. "But they were rather small amounts, like a few hundred dollars. In general, people are quite honest."

Crante Money Changer did not respond when contacted by ST.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 10, 2017, with the headline 'Couple win praise for returning $13,400'. Print Edition | Subscribe