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Why is it so difficult to get back change?

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Joined: 21 Apr 2010
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2010 10:45 pm    Post subject: Why is it so difficult to get back change? Reply with quote

Once in awhile it's no problem but I have noticed the last year or so in the Philippines that many places where money is exchanged either ask you for exact change or are constantly saying things like "Do you have two pesos?". Why is getting change such a problem lately? Has anyone else noticed this?
I hope this trend will change Smile
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Joined: 02 Feb 2010
Posts: 20

PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Zackback. Teachurrr here.

I have experienced what you mentioned when I was living in Cebu in previous years. When at the grocery store, money changer, etc., the clerk or cashier sometimes asked if I had small bills or coins to complete a transaction.

In 2002, this was a burden for me sometimes as I was not "clued in" on places to get change or having change on me. I had a tourist mentality and always carried 1,000 and 500 Peso notes with the smallest usually being a 100 peso notes. I would actually leave my "change" at my apartment. Silly me. I was always in a hurry and didn't prepare small bills in advance for my day's activities. This could be a problem sometimes in a taxi because not having small bills gives the dishonest driver a chance to play the "I don't have change" game with the hope I am in a hurry and will give a GIANT tip given the unfortunate circumstances. The way to solve this happenstance is to always carry small bills along with the larger bills. Also, if a department store, grocery store, restaurant, etc. asked if I had "2 pesos" or something like that, I would feel inconvenienced, especially since I am the customer. I would also feel a little bad that I couldn't help.

In 2005-2008, I was not always "in a hurry" and was prepared for my day by making sure I always have small "change" on me. It's actually quite easy. Jollibee fast food restaurants always have change, ALWAYS!!! So do other fast food restaurants, like Chow King and others. They are better than a bank in my opinion. I would stop in, order a coke or coffee (maybe 10-20 pesos) and give them a 1000 peso note. They would give me back 100, 50, 20 peso notes and coins. If they gave me a 500 note, I would ask for smaller notes. They were happy to do it and its not a burden either way for them or for me. Now, I had "change" for the next few days for taxis, stores, etc. This has worked like a charm for me.

If I found myself stuck in a taxi with only larger bills and the taxi driver said he didn't have change, I would have him pull in to the nearest CALTEX or PETRON gas station. They will always break a large bill for me. Also, this is the way taxi driver's get "change" all through the day all around the Philippines.

Thus, there is "change" all around us, we just have to know where to get it. As far as helping the clerk who asks if I have "2 pesos," I am happy to assist because I actually have change. This leads to a smile and appreciation that I was able to help. I like that feeling.

Anyway, I don't know how helpful this will be, but that's my experience. I hope things work out for you in the Philippines. Great place.

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Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Posts: 131
Location: Up in the air!!!

PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:17 am    Post subject: Change Reply with quote

When the taxi drivers don't have change I just get out & hold the bill I attempted to pay with until I am sure the guy is not calling the police. I have had them bring a cop by & I have showed the money I tried to pay with to prove I was not trying to rip the guy off. My wife tends to get argumentative when they try to pull that crap & the change usually appears as if by magic.

I've lived here for 6 years & will always hate that "no change" line. I also make it my business to know how much the proper jeepney fare is so I can give correct change.
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Joined: 17 May 2011
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PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Getting change at stores and also jeeps in the morning might just be a normal thing. Yes, its a problem, but that's why they have these signs saying "Barya lang po sa umaga" (Please just give change in the morning)
Now don't ask me what they do to all the change they had the day before.

Taxis on the other hand, are another case. Some start roaming the city at night bringing no change with them, and some are just jerks claiming they don't have change. We should always just be ready. The easiest solution is to just get to the nearest store to ask if you could get your money changed. Smile

Groceries and big stores almost never have this problem. Although they also wouldn't be opening up cash registers to get your money changed if that was all you needed. My point would be to use your big bills at the grocery and always keep your change for other transactions.
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