M’sian Lady Exchanges $50 Million Hell Note For Ringgit; Money Changer Thinks She’s A Ghost

M’sian Woman Hands $50,000,000 Hell Note To Money Changer In Sabah

Qing Ming Festival is upon us, and as we prepare to remember the dead, you’ll love this story about the living.

A particular money changer in downtown Sandakan, Sabah was privy to an incident that left him wondering if he’d had a close encounter with the spooky kind.

$50,000,000 in hell notes

Around 12.30pm on Tuesday (26 Mar), our fateful money changer was going about his daily affairs — presumably counting coins, shuffling notes & updating his rates.

He suddenly became aware of the presence of an unknown lady at his counter.


Without further explanation, she offered him a note which amounted to a whopping $50 million to exchange for Ringgit.

The only problem was that her preferred rates weren’t actually of this earth.

Checked if female was human via CCTV

Scared witless, the money changer suspected that she too was a visitor from another realm.

He calmly lied that they had “run out of Ringgit” and went to the backroom to scrutinise the CCTV footage with his boss.

Thankfully, the woman was 100% human.


His concerned boss quickly realised that the foreign “banknote” wasn’t “Indonesia Rupiah or Hong Kong Dollar”, promptly identifying the foreign currency as a hell note via its design.

First time for everything

Later on, the boss told Sin Chew Daily that this had never happened to him before, since the founding of the company.

They weren’t exactly sure if the lady was playing a prank or being serious about her request to exchange hell notes for Ringgit.

Is the exchange rate still 3:1?

After explaining the Chinese practice of burning hell notes during Qing Ming Festival to the lady, they learned that she picked up the money from the streets.

She hoped to exchange it for something tangible, but wasn’t aware of the practice of ancestor worship via sending them money through a ‘fire exchange’.

Money changes lives

Through this hilarious incident, we’re glad that more lives have been changed than money.

So if you do see $50 million in the streets this Qing Ming Festival, don’t be too quick to bag it and head to your nearest money changer.

We must let the sleeping hell notes lie where we find them.

Featured image from Sin Chew Daily.

  • More From Author