Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Checking the Authenticity of Baht Notes in Koh Samui

Thai baht front top to bottom 1000 baht, 500 baht, 100 baht and 50 baht note
It doesn’t get any better than checking in at a luxury suite at ShaSa Resort and Residences, and spending the day visiting as many Koh Samui attractions as possible. However, a vacationist’s seemingly perfect holiday can easily be turned inside out if he makes the mistake of exchanging his cash for fake baht notes.

Police in Thailand have recently issued several warnings regarding the emergence of counterfeited dough yet again. Although the instances of these occurrences happening to tourists are statistically uncommon, there’s always that small chance wherein an individual unwittingly exchanges his money for knockoffs.

Counterfeiters have done an excellent job at creating fake bills, which closely resemble the real thing. Numerous cashiers are trained to identify fake currencies, and upon catching a customer paying facsimiles, they’ll be left with no choice but to contact local authorities.

Unwillingly using replica baht usually won’t entail trouble with the law, but it does mean a potentially long interview will be conducted in order to determine innocence. On the other hand, if the tourist happens to be caught knowingly using pseudo notes, then he or she could pay a fine of up to 30,000 baht (USD1000) and/or be sentenced to jail for 15 years.

To avoid the hassle of being interrogated by suspicious cops or spending a lengthy holiday in a dirty prison cell with other lawbreakers, the management at ShaSa Resort shares the following tips for distinguishing between the real deal and fakes: first, try wetting a portion of the bill. If it’s fake, then some of the colours will start running.

Authentic baht notes also have a holographic strip on the left hand side, which is typically larger than that of its unreal counterparts.

Here’s another helpful tip: compare suspicious notes with an authentic bill acquired from legit moneychangers at airports within the island or abroad. Even foreigners coming to Samui for the first time will immediately be able to detect a notable difference between genuine bills and their pseudo counterparts, so using this particular test as a “pre-test” to warrant the need for using the other tests mentioned earlier would definitely be helpful.

Before getting overwhelmed with plotting an itinerary for the Koh Samui attractions to visit, the management of ShaSa Resort strongly advises ensuring the authenticity of their baht notes first. To negate the risk of receiving fake bills, dealing with Thai banks or legit moneychangers is recommended.

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