Man tries to pay with S$10 Lee Kuan Yew commemorative coin, confuses cashiers

The limited edition coin is legal tender in Singapore.

Daniel Seow | September 20, 2023, 02:57 PM



If you managed to snag a limited edition S$10 Lee Kuan Yew commemorative coin, what would you do with it?

Some might store it in a drawer for safe-keeping, but it could also be used to pay for purchases, like say a bag of chips at 7-Eleven.

After all, the coins are legal tender, according to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) website.

That's the premise of a video posted by TikToker "sethisfy" on Sep. 17, where he confused cashiers at various stores in Singapore by trying to pay for purchases with his newly minted LKY coin.

The clip has since gone viral on TikTok, with more than 198,000 views as of Sep. 20.

@sethisfy7-11 guy so cute made exaggerated gestures so we can get more views 🥲♬ Monkeys Spinning Monkeys - Kevin MacLeod & Kevin The Monkey

The video

Seth, who creates content related to personal finance, visited a number of well-known chain shops in Singapore to see if they would accept his LKY coin.

These included Starbucks, 7-Eleven and Cold Storage outlets.

The most common reaction was that of confusion.

A number of cashiers, after scrutinising the LKY coin more closely, seemed unsure of what to make of it.

A Starbucks cashier seemed to turn to a colleague for help after seeing the unusual coin.

GIF from sethisfy on TikTok.

And another cashier at a Korean grocery store just stared blankly into space for a second.

GIF from sethisfy on TikTok.

The 7-Eleven cashier initially asked Seth what the strange coin was, before adding in a bemused tone, "S$10 Singapore ah?"

Finally, a cashier at what looks like a Cold Storage outlet provided a more decisive response, saying, "No la, this one cannot."

Screenshots from sethisfy on TikTok.

Later, she found out that it was a legitimate coin, and noted with a smile, "Very nice leh. It's the first time I see".

Screenshots from sethisfy on TikTok.

All the cashiers seemed to have been made aware that it was a prank, and passed Seth his coin back after admiring the design.

Background about LKY100 coin

MAS announced the launch of the LKY100 coin in May 2023, to commemorate Lee Kuan Yew's 100th birth anniversary.

A total of 4 million of such coins have been minted, and applications for the coin have ended on Jun. 9.

Successful applicants can collect their LKY coins from Sep. 4 till Nov. 26, 2023.

The coin itself is quite different in appearance from the usual pocket change.

It is gold and minted in aluminium bronze.

The diameter of the coin, at 30mm, is also larger than all current Third Series circulation coins.

The reverse side of the coin also prominently features a portrait of Lee, along with iconic Singapore buildings such as the Marina Barrage, Fullerton Hotel and National Gallery.

Image from MAS.

LKY Coin can be used for purchases in S'pore, but why would you?

So, can you actually buy things with it? The answer is yes.

The MAS website states that the LKY100 coin is legal tender, so it can be used to purchase goods and services in Singapore.

Banks will also accept the coin for deposits over the counter.

However, no one typically uses commemorative coins for cash payments.

Most will collect them instead for their unique designs, and limited edition coins might also appreciate in value in the future.

Top screenshots from sethisfy on TikTok.