Taxi Driver Finds $10,000 Cash and Passport Left By Saudi In Car, Tracks Down Owner, Waits for his Arrival . . . And Is Given $3 Tip

Shaaban Ali is an honest taxi driver in the UAE. The Pakistani driver found Dh36,000 ($10,000), a passport and some other documents left by a Saudi passenger in his cab. He worked to track down the owner and soon found his office number. He then contacted the man and waited more than an hour for the man to arrive to pick up the money. The Saudi then gave him a $3 tip for returning the papers, his passport, and the cash.

It is not clear if he intends to send the $3 back to his family living in Kohat, Pakistan or just buy a cup of coffee.

Source: Al Arabiya

44 thoughts on “Taxi Driver Finds $10,000 Cash and Passport Left By Saudi In Car, Tracks Down Owner, Waits for his Arrival . . . And Is Given $3 Tip

  1. Boob wasn’t exactly the word I was thinking of raff, but I’ll agree on the arrogant and ungrateful part for sure.

  2. rafflaw:

    I just found, last week, a persons home depot credit card and a company debit card on the street in front of my house. I called the company and waited about 20 minutes and didnt even get a thank you let alone 3 dollars.

    I think about how I would feel if I lost something like that, I would be very grateful to have it returned.

    I remember I lost a calculator in school and the next class an Egyptian guy came over and gave it back to me, I offered some money and he said it was against his religion to accept payment. I dont know if he was a Muslim or a Christian or something else.

  3. Perhaps $3 is a lot of money to a cabbie in UAE. Perhaps there is an expectation that people should do the right thing without reward. Perhaps a lot of things. But it does seem that guy should have been a lot more grateful to the cabbie.

  4. If ya have to be paid to be ‘honest’ then what’s the point?

    I have also found a wallet & cell phones….I didn’t expect OR WANT anything, other than maybe the other person paying it forward…

  5. I was just in New York, and the fare from JFK Airport to midtown Manhatten was $52.50. I gave the taxi driver a $7 tip. I did not realize that I had overpaid so much, when the correct Saudi-style tip should have been $0.015.

  6. This person has just learned an important lesson in life, quite possibly negative.
    BTW, wahhabi is not something you have with sushi.

  7. nick, are you trying to start a fight?

    I found a very nice camera in a fanny pack in the middle of a country road. No id in it. No pictures. I turned it in to the sheriff’s department. The next day the owner stopped by to thank me and give me a reward. I accepted the thanks and rejected the reward. He insisted. I said no, just do something special for someone else. He walked away. Then came back and pushed the money into my hand and walked away again. $50! I didn’t get a chance to negotiate the amount down. I still have $20 to pass on. The other $30 has gone in $5 or $10 amounts to the person following me at the gas station and in extra large tips when I eat out. I think I’ll stop at the thrift store and see if there’s someone who might like to find part of their bill already paid.

  8. BettyKath, right. I tip so well that I won’t go out unless I can afford a good tip, so I have to be very careful. Nick, I WAS a waitress but that’s not the only source of my being a good tipper; the other reason is that I value people’s work and their contributions. Where would we be without all that?

  9. Hey Bron,

    You should have gone out and charged up a bunch of stuff on the HD Card ….

    I will bet that would have gotten their attention … !!!

    I guess Miss Manners is absent these days.

  10. The other reason to tip well is that those we generally tip count on their tips to pay their bills. If I can afford to eat out, I need to also afford an additional 20%. It usually means that I eat at diners, not fancy restaurants. If I have a messy or demanding child with me the tip is even more. I loooove a pedicure. It’s worth an extra 20%. So is a good haircut. Hotel maids also get tips, but not 20% of the cost of the room.

  11. Be grateful for $3.00, or face deportation with nothing, courtesy of the House of Saud, I always say…

    BTW – How to have a happy server/service person when paying by credit card? Tip in cash.

  12. I am not trying to start a fight. My family was in the restaurant business. I’m am not saying all women are bad tippers, I’m saying they generally don’t tip as well as men. And Malisha, if you are going to try to convince me that women tip as well as men, having been a waitress yourself, then let’s stop the discussion right now. This is not a value judgement, it’s just a statement of fact. I’m not saying men are better than women because I do not believe that..I’m merely saying they’re better tippers. I’ve waited tables, bartended and so have my siblings and cousins. I have a sister and cousin who are uber feminists, they will say the same thing. Sit down w/ bartenders, waiters and waitresses anywhere and they’ll say the same thing.

    Some helpful it were. Give signals to wait staff that you’re a good tipper, particularly if you’re a woman. if they’re good @ their job, you’ll get a little better service. Bartenders are easy, give them a tip w/ your first drink and if they’re good you’ll get better service and a better pour. And here’s my request, ALWAYS tip your housekeeper in a hotel. Just $5 means so much to them. I usually leave $10. Be kind and generous to the people who serve you.

  13. bettykath, I’m not surprised you’re a good tipper and kudos for tipping housekeepers. I just remembered another group of women who are good tippers..hairdressers. I tended bar to help make ends meet when I started my business in 1983. On Thursday evenings a bunch of hairdressers would come to this bar after closing shop, they were fun and tipped generously. At the other end of the spectrum, teachers. We would get teachers from several different schools and two different school districts. The only ones who would tip would generally be the blue collar, shop, drafting teachers. The gym teachers and coaches would usually tip. For the most part the rest, male or female..nothing. And, you don’t need to tip a bartender much for them to be happy. If you had a $10 tab and left me a buck that was fine. Midwesterners are the worst tippers, East Coasters the best. West Coast tip well also. I don’t know about the south or mountain time zone.

  14. I tip everybody in cash … the kid who loads my groceries into my truck, the guy who loads the driveway sealant into my truck, the server, the bartender, the housekeeping personal, the mailman at New years, the paperboy (used to when papers were delivered), cab drivers, train porters, hair stylists, baristas … hell, I’m a walking, talking ATM machine.

  15. I’m one of those women who don’t tip enough because I never realized that everyone expects a tip. Should I tip my doctor? My pharmacist? I take a lot of public transportation trips. do I tip the drivers? How about the mail person and the garbage truck driver?

  16. @Anne – Yes to the last two, though letter carriers are prohibited from large gifts, but crafts and baked goods are okay, sometimes gift certs too, but say, $20 limit. Get them a nice pair of gloves for the winter. Garbage truck drivers? Yes, and you’ll see a bit more attentiveness to those “iffy” collection situations. (Talking about collections in a single-family residence subdivision.) We’re still old-style here, a driver and 1-2 loaders, though it all goes to the curb. When I was growing up in the DC suburbs, they came into the back yard to get it. BTW – Was my dream job to ride, holding on the back of a truck, when I was about 6. Coolness.

    @Nick – Was going to mention the worst of the worst demographic, female teachers. When living in Fresno, I’d go with a bunch to a particular bar on the last day of school (contracted with Risk Management, knew a lot of them). Several years in a row, 30 or so teachers, mostly females in the group, several hours of drinking, and about $50-60 in tips.

  17. Blouise, Like yourself, I always tip in cash. Even if I pay a restaurant tab on a card, I’ll pay cash for the tip. They appreciate it. Folks should realize that the IRS is very tough on restaurants. They want to make sure those evil waitresses are declaring all their tips so restaurants are audited frequently. Corporations pay no f@cking taxes, but let’s get every penny from a waitress! And, I’m not surprised in the least you’re generous, Blouise. Being generous makes one feel so good. I often wonder if cheapskates don’t get the joy from being generous?

    Anne Vance, Assuming a fact not in evidence, that being you’re question is not sarcastic, no you don’t tip professionals. I’ve sent food to a surgeon who were great to my father and wife. It was just a basket of good food for his whole staff. You don’t tip teachers but a Christmas gift..err Holiday gift, is a nice gesture. I’m old enough to remember teachers getting cartons of cigarettes for Christmas! I tip our garbage guy, newspaper delivery woman, and postal carrier. Now, this is not all altruistic. I tip our regular carrier in Wisconsin @ Christmas and I tip our carrier in San Diego where we spend Jan-April because she helps make sure our mail is forwarded promptly. Regarding public transportation, I would tip our regular bus driver in KC @ Christmas. I took the subway in Chicago so there’s no one to tip. The housekeepers in hotels are my mission. I’m very proud my kids tip them everytime, now that they’re older and on their own.

  18. nick,

    and … don’t leave the tip on the table. Put it in the folder or on the tray with the bill, card/cash. And leave the housekeeping tip in an envelope clearly marked for housekeeping.

  19. RE: Tipping postman.

    A certain postman had part of town as his “beat” and every Christmas he got tips from nearly everyone there, but the house number 6319 never tipped, and OK, that happens. So one December 23, he’s delivering mail and a lady opens the front door and says, “Are you the mailman?” He says he is and she invites him in for a cup of coffee and a donut. He’s happy to get a break and a warm interlude, and comes in etc. She then leaves the room for a minute and comes back in a black negligee.

    “Would you like to come into the bedroom with me?”
    and so forth, and she seduces him.

    Then she says, “Would you like more coffee?”
    “Sure” and thanks and all.

    Then, when he’s almost done with the coffee, he takes out a dollar bill and hands it to him.

    “What’s this?” he asks.
    “My husband said to give this to you.”



    “Your husband?” he asks, alarmed, “I don’t understand.”

    “Oh,” she responds, “I told my husband that all our neighbors say they tip the mailman at Christmas and should I do that too, and he said, ‘PHUCK HIM, GIVE HIM A DOLLAR.'”

  20. Correct, Blouise. Housekeepers are told to not take cash unles it’s clearly marked. A few places provide envelopes but usually I just write, “For Housekeeper, Thank You” I worked as a house dick @ the Drake Hotel back in the early 80’s. That’s where my love and respect for housekeepers originated. Bill Cosby would leave a C note for housekeepers when he stayed there. I chatted w/ him once, just a charming, nice man.

  21. Malisha..great joke. But, you forgot to give the standard, “Be sure to tip your waitresses on the way out.”

  22. nick,

    I do $5 a night so I’d have to be there for quite a spell to tip $100. I know Mr. Cosby from my jazz club days when he was working the circuit. Yes, you are correct … genuinely nice man and generous to a fault.

  23. Blouise, I’m new here. Please tell me about the jazz club days.

    Bruce, Be careful. There are folks here who actually think Biden is great. Thank God we’re not con men, we could take all their money.

  24. The tip is not the issue. The value of replacing the money and the passport should be of concerned. How much to replace a passport? Wow. The money speaks for itself.

  25. My daughter was a waitress at the International Terminal here at DFW and quickly learned that other countries don’t tip very well. Of course they pay their wait staff a living wage. Here in Texas wait staff are paid $2.13 an hour and only get minimum wage if their tip out doesn’t equal $7.50 an hour. In other words staff costs are born by the diner and not the owner. And yes my daughter is a great tipper and has made me a better tipper too.

  26. Deborah S, Waiting tables, particularly w/ such an international clientele, is a real world ivy league education. And, probably more valuable if she combines it w/ a college education. She’ll be way ahead of the folks that think one only learns from books. Finally, tipping can be learned if one has a good heart.

  27. just imagine the tip he would have received if stopped by the police and had the saudi’s passport in his possession.

  28. I tip good when the service good, don;t when the service bad.
    If you do a kindness because you expect to get something back, other then karma, then foo on you and it is not a kindness, it is a business transcation, Good for the driver, foo also on the man,

  29. Someone I know looked for excuses to not leave a tip. So many times I heard “she just spent her tip”. He should have been so perfect [sarcasm].
    One reason some women don’t tip well is that they don’t have the same discretionary funds as men do. Another reason for women to be paid at the same rate as men. Let women be paid an additional 43% to bring their pay in line with men doing the same or comparable work and this might change.

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