Thailand has released new legal tender banknotes on Dec. 12, 2020 -- and Thais are confused and exasperated by the new 1,000 baht note in portrait orientation.
2 new notes: 100 baht and 1,000 baht
Issued by the Bank of Thailand, the new 100 (S$4.45) and 1,000 baht (S$44.50) notes were launched to commemorate the anniversary of His Majesty the King’s coronation.
Both new notes feature illustrations of the coronation ceremony and are printed in 3D magnetic ink to prevent counterfeiting.
Of particular interest has been the 1,000 baht note, which is way larger than its original size.
The new banknotes can be used like other banknotes in current circulation and can be exchanged through commercial and state banks.
However, a video put up on Dec. 15 showed the confusion and general bemusement of Thais as they come face to face with the 1,000 baht note for the first time.
Some street hawkers refused to accept it as they were probably unaware of the new notes launch, while the video producers showed how impractical the 1,000 baht note is as it cannot fit usual wallets and cash registers.
Thai baht banknotes are typically no bigger than than 72x162mm.
The new 1,000 baht note has an unusual 127×181mm size and portrait orientation.
One meme that Thais are sharing involve a catchphrase from a popular Thai drama, where the female lead angrily asked: “Is your 1,000 baht banknote as big as your wall?”
100 baht note also problematic
Compounding the confusion is the fact that the new 100 baht note is similar to the old 1,000 baht note.
Some Thais have expressed concern on Facebook that merchants may confuse the notes and return more change to customers as the new 100 baht note is mistaken as the old 1,000 baht note.
One person on Facebook claimed in Thai that he or she had mistakenly received 950 baht change, after using the new 100 baht note to pay for a 50 baht purchase.
Thailand has penchant of launching new notes
The Bank of Thailand has a practice of releasing commemorative banknotes over the years.
The previous largest commemorative banknote was released in 2016.
It was to mark the 70th anniversary of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great’s accession to the throne.
That year, the size of the special 70 baht banknote was 89×162 mm.
In 2011, a special 100 baht note was released to celebrate His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great’s 7th Cycle Birthday Anniversary.
The size of the note was 84×162 mm.
Another larger-than-normal banknote was released to celebrate Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, The Queen Mother’s 80th birthday back in 2012.
The note was 80×162mm.
Top photos via 飞常好玩 Play n Fly & TikTok