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I got scammed at a Karaoke in Pattaya

There’s a first time for everything and of all the places I get robbed it had to be in Pattaya. I’ve been to almost every Karaoke house I could find in Northern and Eastern Thailand and at every shop it’s exactly the same I’m prepared for every little scam they have in order to push the costs up and it finally happened that I wasn’t prepared for this scam actually I wouldn’t even call it a scam I say they robbed me.
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So a few days ago I went out and had a killer night, made friends with this Mamason who arranged me some girls and so on. When the Go Go closed she offered to take me to a Karaoke house she knows sing some songs, her relative runs the place. Sure why not!

So we get to this Karaoke shop and she’s like just pay for beers it’s 100 baht at this point in the night I honestly can’t do any beer my stomach just can’t handle it don’t know why so I ask about the prices of bottles.

They don’t have much in the way of selection at all it’s kinda the place old chicks go to have fun with some young Thai guys normally I’d just walk out but I’m out of it at this point and when the guy tells me it’s 900 baht for the bottle (including mixers) I’m like sure let’s do it.

So we stay for a few hours until it’s almost light outside when we decide to leave but we only drank like half the bottle. So I ask for the bill and everything is on the up and up so I’m guessing because I’m with the mamason they didn’t try anything funny that’s cool. So I ask to leave the bottle there and ask for my card. They said they don’t give cards but they will remember me. I doubt they get many customers so I actually believe this.

So last night my girl wants to go out and so I figure we’d go finish off the half bottle I still got at the Karaoke shop at least to start with anyway. I’m not at all surprised that everyone there remembers me when we rock up and the bottle comes straight out. Was relieved and felt OK about it.

The place really sux ass and I’m sitting there wondering how the hell I ended up there the other night, but that’s the beauty about Pattaya you always seem to end up some place really random when you go out. Didn’t take long to finish half a bottle when they ask me if I want to open another. I wanted to laugh but said that’s fine i’ll get the bill (my girl ordered a spy).

The bill comes out and it’s like 480 baht with charges for coke water and ice. The mixers which was already included in the bottle I paid for. WTF. I said bro I already paid for the bottle with mixers you told me it was including mixers dude go fix the bill!

Then they do something that really shits me, they go to my girl and try to explain it to her, this pisses me off for two reasons. Firstly if I don’t understand why the hell you trying to explain it to her for and secondly she ain’t going to pay the bill so why you explaining it to her for!

robbed at a karaoke in Pattaya

My girl walks over then and tells me I have to pay because it’s a new day the free mixers only apply to the day you bought the bottle. WTF I’ve been to hundreds and hundreds of Karaoke’s across the country never heard of this bullshit before, he then says something that reminds me of coffee shops in Thailand he says “this is how this shop works”. Like ordering a Latte at a coffee shop and it comes out as a cappuccino “this is how the shop makes it” no it’s not a latte if 3/4 of the cup is full of foam and it’s not free mixers if you make me pay for them!

This is total bullshit so I go to the counter and ask for the manager and the menu. I say that I paid for a bottle with free mixers and your charging me for mixers. The guy repeats the same bullshit and I say look at this menu it reads “100 Pipers เหมาจ่าย” for those who can’t read เหมาจ่าย is like a lump sum payment, pay nothing more kind of thing so why the fuck are you trying to make me pay more!

Then the little cunt says to me “What you think you could come here and drink free?” with which I respond “what are you talking about I already paid the 900 baht!”
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I could see at this point that I’m just wasting my time arguing with this guy they are standing by their story that the free mixers only apply to the day you purchase the bottle. I start thinking about it and it’s 280 baht i’m arguing about if I have a problem with the bill what can I do, have the police come and settle a 280 baht bill which in the end because of their stupid “only for the day you bought the bottle story” isn’t going to get me any restitution I let it go pay the bill and leave, they openly robbed me there was nothing I could really do.

Now you might be thinking i’m bitching about nothing what was that like $14 i’m crying about. I spend 20 times more than that going out to a G-club in Bangkok. It’s just the principle about it you know. Seems in Thailand you can make up any erroneous charge you want without informing customers until it’s time to pay, the menu says the bottle was inclusive of mixers yet they came up with some bullshit to say I have to pay.

If everyone did this scam in Thailand you’d be done all the time, go wash your clothes and get charge 100 baht for using starch on your clothes, you didn’t ask for it, doesn’t matter we do that to everyone. How about going to a restaurant and asking for rice then get charged an extra 500 baht because you used their plates.

Consumers are supposed to fall for the fine print, but what do you do when there is no fine print, how can you prepare yourself for a scam if you don’t know what questions to ask. If the menu says including mixers how the hell am I supposed to know to ask if the mixers will be free again tomorrow if I keep the bottle there? You can’t know to ask that shit, well I guess you guys do now!


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About Chris

Chris founded Living Thai and author of the books Learn the The Thai Alphabet and How to make money in Thailand also the Blueprint for Living in Thailand. Chris started this blog with the aim of educating westerners on how to have the best time in Thailand, to make new friends and to vent his frustrations Chris is also fluent in both written and spoken Thai.

11 Responses to I got scammed at a Karaoke in Pattaya

  1. jack March 31, 2013 at 5:52 am #

    Haha ha hasnt anything like this before happend to you ? if you stay in Thailand long enough it will all come around especially in Pattya. I was involved in an fight with a mate over 150bahts in similar circumstances, just down the road in Chantaburi, 150 bahts bought alot more then, but still it was,nt worth the steel bars weilded by the girls and thai gangsters coupled with the police arriving and as usual siding with the Thais, it was easier to pay the 5aud we did,nt spend. BTW the steel bars werent as much as a concern as it was for my mate who,s back looked like he,d been flogged with a cat o 9 tails, I was more concerned with pistols being produced , a few weeks later a young aussie was shot in that city, always wondered if he was at that shithole. LOL.

    • Chris March 31, 2013 at 1:16 pm #

      This particular scam has never happened to me, i’m still pissed about it.

    • gmp360 April 2, 2013 at 6:04 am #

      Don’t, I repeat, don’t ever, ever, get in fight with a Thai. All the other Thai’s (including the girls) will come to help them. Even if they hate the person they will get a stick (or steel bar) and help them beat the shit out of you.

  2. american March 31, 2013 at 8:40 am #

    I haven’t heard of new day/ new pay. At the point they dig their heels in, you aren’t going to get anywhere. You know this. I just tell everyone I know (quite a few) that it’s a rippoff place and when girls want to go to some place like that or friends from out of town, etc. I just tell them no, it’s a rippoff place.

    My main rules are, never go to a karaoke (cause I just don’t like them) and never go upstairs for a “show” if you don’t know the place is owned and/or run by farangs (xzone south walking street is the only upstairs show place I will go).

    I try to frequent places owned by farangs as I find that it is rare I ever have an issue (I am not a 55 baht beer for 4 hours, punter), I just chat with the farang in charge. Had a small issue at a place where the bill was all messed up. Had 1 drink for me and 1 for the lady (that I have known before she worked there), bill comes back with 11 drinks of which 9 are removed and somewhere sneaky in the middle it shows 2 for the lady. This was the first printed receipt. After the cashier started yelling at the lady after I suggested it was wrong, I asked the owner/manager to fix it. I was polite and said stuff happens and used logic (like why would I buy her two mixed drinks with ice at a time?) etc. I gave the lady I sat with a tip as well and even tipped the bar as usual. I came in again a week later and the cashier (old cranky lady). gave me my receipt and smiled and said ok? It was fine. (at no time in my encounter before did I raise my voice or look upset. I just smiled and said, no only one drink and then escalated to the farang).

    There are many places in Pattaya, even on walking street, that are run by farangs. This time of year, they would really like your business and good words on forums. They aren’t about to cheat you out of some small change because unlike some locals, they understand that tomorrow does come.

    • Chris March 31, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

      These thugs certainly suggest why most of the popular go-go’s in Pattaya are Farang run. What a joke, you are right, businesses who do this crap don’t last long.

  3. Mike-Paradise March 31, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

    I’m surprised because of your level of Thai. Usually if you speak good Thai they don’t mess with you. And like you said it’s not the amount they tried to screw you with, it’s the principle for sure.

    • Chris March 31, 2013 at 8:27 pm #

      First time for everything, they were probably pissed that I went back to drink my bottle.

  4. Milbrath April 5, 2013 at 11:56 pm #

    Makes you wonder why most Thai businesses fail.

  5. John April 11, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

    Consider yourself lucky…
    I just got an SMS from a mate of mine who went to My Love Karaoke in Chiang Mai tonight, he is a kiwi and was with a Thai friend. They were there for an hour and were presented with a bill for 13 000 baht. He spat the dummy, but in the end the dumb prick paid the bill.

    I have been there before and felt screwed, but nothing like this.

    1 hour
    2 guys
    0 fucks…
    13000 baht for nothing

    The closest thing to dick action he will be seeing for tonight, is when I kick him up the ass next time I see him for being such a dumb fuck.

    • Chris April 12, 2013 at 3:35 am #

      WTF I had a party with 10 guys 9 girls 4 hours only cost 15,000 but not at “My Love” headjob included, how did that happen? I’d love to know what the bill was for.

  6. John April 12, 2013 at 8:17 am #

    I will be seeing him next week, I think he took a photo of the bill, so I’ll try and end you a copy for a laugh

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