Customer drops equivalent of $7,686 tip after accidentally entering PIN, which is 7686

Illustration for article titled Customer drops equivalent of $7,686 tip after accidentally entering PIN, which is 7686
Photo: Peter Dazeley (Getty Images)

If you’ve eaten in restaurants abroad, you know that you usually have to swipe your credit card via a hand-held terminal that a server brings to your table. It can be a bit strange for those used to the American system, but it’s worth it to ask questions when you’re confused, apparently: Munchies reports a Russian woman eating lunch at a restaurant in Switzerland accidentally entered her PIN—7686—instead of a tip, turning her modest $23-ish meal into a $7,709 splurge. (She’s since changed her pin, obviously.)


The woman inadvertently added a 32,000-percent tip, which she didn’t realize until she saw her credit card statement the next month and probably had a small cardiac episode. Munchies reports she tried to contact police, who told her she didn’t have a legal case; she then reached out to the restaurant, New Point cafe. The owner there allegedly agreed to refund her money, then went AWOL, closed his cafe, and declared bankruptcy.

According to Swiss news website Blick, her credit card company says it also can’t refund her money because this wasn’t an instance of fraud. In the meantime, the woman is unemployed and can’t seem to find a remedy for this $7,000-plus tip. This unfortunate story should serve as a reminder to the rest of us: If you don’t know how to use the foreign money machine, just ask. Or change your PIN to 0001.

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.


Its a little odd, don’t most credit cards have systems in place where unusually large purchases get flagged and they won’t pay out until they’ve confirmed its legit? I know my bank will do stuff like that. If I happen to make any sort of large purchase over a certain amount, I’ll typically get a follow up call with them just double checking to make sure its not fraudulent activity.