So you’re a tourist visiting Prague for the first time, and you need to change money.
The streets of the city center in the Czech capital are lined with exchange offices offering 0% commission, but perhaps you’ve heard that many are too-good-to-be-true, and specialize in exploiting tourists by offering less-than acceptable rates.
You don’t know where to turn, but just as you’re down to deciding between two exchange offices across the street from one another, a shady individual walks up flashing a wad of cash from beneath his coat, and offers to give you a fair deal.
This is Prague’s oldest scam in the books, and dates back to the 90’s when unscrupulous street traders would offer passing tourists excellent rates on exchanges.
Only later would the unfortunate victim find that the currency wasn’t even valid; instead, they had received defunct and unusable Czechoslovak crowns that had been out of commission after the Czech Republic and Slovakia split in 1993.
Incredibly, the scam continues to this day. Old Czechoslovak koruna are no longer common sights – and may actually be valuable – but street traders are still able to lure their victims with Czech-looking currency.
Stream International’s Honza Mikulka & Janek Rubeš have exposed dishonest exchange offices in the past, and for their latest video they reveal some street traders who have cheated unsuspecting tourists by exchanging Euros for low-value Belarussian rubles.
Whether you’re in Prague, or anywhere else in the world for that matter, a word of advice: never change money on the street.
Big thanks to Stream International, who continue to put themselves at risk by exposing these local crooks.