Thailand taxi driver gets S$1,406 tip on S$25 ride for sending passenger to airport fast

He was supposedly promised a bonus if he could make the trip in 30 minutes.

Daniel Seow | November 16, 2023, 10:29 AM



A taxi driver in Thailand secured a windfall after a passenger whom he sent to the airport, gave him a 1,000 euro tip (about S$1,406), for a metered trip that cost 677 baht (S$25).

The cabby, Chang Yim, took to the "รวมพลคนขับแท็กซี่(แห่งประเทศไทย)" (Taxi Drivers of Thailand) Facebook group on Nov. 5 to share his delight.

He posted a picture of the two 500 euro bills that the passenger had given him, and indicated the person had told him to keep the change.

Image from Chang Yim on Facebook.

The post went viral, garnering more than 16,000 likes and 2,000 comments as of Nov. 15.

Bonus payment offered for fast trip

The cabby also gave a further account of what had happened in a comment in Thai on the post.

Based on a Thaiger report, which translated Chang's account, he had picked up a foreign passenger who asked him to drop him off at Don Mueang International Airport in Bangkok.

However, the foreigner later realised that there was a mix-up, and his flight was departing from Suvarnabhumi Airport instead.

Image from Google Maps.

The fastest route between the two airports is a 45.2km journey, which was estimated to take 45 minutes.

However, the passenger told Chang that he didn't want to miss his flight and offered Chang a bonus payment if he could make the trip in 30 minutes.

And after Chang completed the trip, the passenger passed him the two 500-Euro bills (worth 37,600 baht) for the 677 baht trip.

These are rare notes which are no longer in production, and stopped being issued by the European Central Bank from 2018.

Online users question if notes are real

While many users shared Chang's delight and said he had as good as won the lottery, others doubted that the notes in Chang's hand were real.

"Looks like the real thing (translated from Thai)," one pointed out.

A few also questioned if the notes could still be exchanged for Thai currency, given that they have been discontinued.

'May have been worth it for him': Cabby

Chang, however, showed that he did manage to claim his windfall in a receipt he posted on Facebook two days later.

The receipt showed that Chang managed to convert the notes to 37,600 baht (S$1,406).

"It's the real thing," he wrote.

Chang added that he did not initially want to take the money, as he was unfamiliar with the note and was afraid of getting scammed.

Nevertheless, he reasoned in his Nov. 5 post that the passenger may have given him such a large amount if he had to catch the flight in order to attend to some business.

"If you calculate what he would lose if he missed his flight, it’s worth it for him. I didn’t demand anything, I just ran the meter as usual,” Chang wrote.

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Top image from Chang Yim on Facebook.