The Time I Got Scammed At 7-11 In Japan

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Time: 7PM ; Location: The 7-11 nearby my share house

After a long grueling day at work and a commute home during rush hour, I was feeling very tired and not up for cooking. On my way back, I decided to stop by the 7-11 near my share house and buy a bento for dinner that night. It was autumn and feeling chilly, I stepped into the warm embrace of the convenience store’s lights and was greeted by the store staff with an “irrashaimase”. Everything was good. All were familiar. Nothing was out of place.

I took my time perusing the shelves stocked with all kinds of delicacies and finally decided on my favourite stir-fried pork belly and black fungus bento. It was 500 yen. I took the bento to the counter and handed the store staff a 1000 yen note as payment. He took my money and gave me my change in return. Without checking, I placed the coins into my bag and trudged home. Now, I usually place my coins directly into my wallet but for some reason, on that day I placed it into one of my bag’s compartments instead. Everything was still fine at this point. I warmed up the bento in the microwave, ate it, watched some dramas on Netflix, and went to bed.

A few days later, I remembered the coins I placed into my bag and took them out. Imagine my surprise when I found that they were not what I expected. Instead of 500 yen, what I received from the konbini staff was a bunch of coins in yuan. Yes, yuan. As in the Chinese currency. I was shocked at first because I didn’t know where they came from. I had never been to China before and never had any yuan in my possession. Then I realized that I had been scammed by the konbini staff at 7-11.

Instead of giving me 500 yen in change, he had given me a bunch of yuan coins. In hindsight, I should have checked the change when he passed it to me but being that I was in Japan, I wasn’t expecting an incident like this to happen. Now when I look back, he did seem kind of suspicious. Also, if you had been to Japan before, you would know that usually, the store staff will count your change for you before placing it into a tray for your collection. But at the time, the staff held the coins tightly in his grip and placed it into my outstretched palm. I was also really tired that day so I wasn’t paying much attention to his actions.

Anyway, it was only 500 yen so I didn’t really want to kick up a fuss and complain to the store manager about it. But from then on, I made sure to always be alert whenever it was time to pay.


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4 thoughts on “The Time I Got Scammed At 7-11 In Japan”

  1. Not something you would expect in Japan indeed with their reputation. My guess is that you were considered ‘gajin’ and hence an allowed social target. Wonder what would have happened if you caught it right away, in my opinion that should have been a free bento then.

    Nice to read about Japan, both the good and the bad, it is still my wish to be able to visit the country some time in the future, bucket list stuff. 🙂

    Looking forward to your next blog.

    1. Hmm but I look Japanese so I’m not sure how they’d consider me a gaijin unless I spoke… Maybe I was just unlucky that day and got targeted since I wasn’t paying attention :/

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