Social media post about rejected P1,000 polymer banknote goes viral

MANILA, Philippines — A social media post has gone viral after circulating over the weekend that showed a frustrated netizen complaining that a popular mall was refusing to accept her slightly bent polymer 1,000 peso note.

The original post was posted by Facebook user Reylen Lopez, who told that she decided to make the post private after getting thousands of reactions on Facebook and around 78,000 shares or reposts.

In her post, Lopez shared her frustration, advising the public not to keep or store her new P1,000 polymer banknotes.

“Do not store new [1,000-peso bill]! According to SM management, there should be no creases,” Lopez said in Filipino on the original social media post.

“I had to use [the banknote] for payment, but the mall did not accept it. We were not informed beforehand. Am I the only one who doesn’t know?” reached out to Lopez, who detailed the story behind her now-viral social media post.

P1,000 polymer banknote rejected?

According to Lopez, she went to a branch of SM Retail Store on Friday, July 8 around 6:45 p.m. to collect or deposit her money in her bank account.

“I already gave the transaction code to the cashier [of the mall’s customer service]. I was about to pay when the cashier saw that my [1,000-peso banknote] was folded,” Lopez said in Filipino.

She said the cashier explained to her that according to mall policy, they do not accept folded polymer notes of P1,000.

Lopez also told that the P1,000 polymer note the cashier refused to accept was only “slightly bent” as she placed it in a folding wallet. However, she pointed out that the bill she had was not excessively bent and had no permanent marks.

“So I said ‘why didn’t I know about this?’ I tried to argue because I am also a cashier, I also handle cash every day and yet I was not informed of said policy,” said Lopez, who works as a cashier for the company. family.

“I was so frustrated because I had no idea, I was not informed even though we are also trained to detect counterfeit money and what we should and should not accept,” she said. added.

Lopez said he has seen several slightly bent P1,000 polymer banknotes since May, a month after Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas released the new polymer banknotes.

“That’s why I said in my post not to keep or store those P1000 notes because at the end of the day they were really delicate and prone to creases and creases,” she said .

She said she had used slightly bent polymer P1,000 banknotes at other establishments in the past and had had no problems with these transactions.

Lopez, after the incident, said she went to a bank inside the mall and asked if she could accept her banknote. She remembers a guard talking to a teller inside the bank, who said he could accept the note.

However, the bank was already closed at the time, so she decided to deposit the note through an ATM. Unfortunately, the machine did not accept his money.

“Maybe the machine can’t read the new 1,000 peso note yet,” she said.

Frustrated, Lopez then went to a fast-food chain and used the slightly bent polymer P1,000 note to pay for her food. She said the cashier accepted it.

Improper and not accepted invoices

Lopez said she was frustrated with the mall’s politics, which she described as “OA” or overaction.

In an official statement, SM Supermalls assured the public that folded tickets were accepted at SM retail stores.

“In response to reports circulating on social media regarding the new Ps1000 bill, we would like to assure the public that folded banknotes are still accepted at our SM Retail stores,” SM Supermalls said.

“Only those who are mutilated – stapled and torn because of [the] staple wire removal – will be considered unsuitable and not accepted. Our policy has taken into consideration the guidelines established by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas,” he added.

“We encourage the public not to interact with misleading social media posts.”

Lopez told that someone from BSP had already contacted her about the incident, which she said is currently under investigation.

She said she had already asked the said BSP employee if she had committed an offense after having her P1,000 polymer banknote slightly bent.

The BSP, according to it, said it had not broken anything and that only excessively bent polymer banknotes are considered unsuitable for recirculation and will not be accepted by institutions or for any transaction.

According to BSP, when polymer banknotes and paper banknotes are excessively bent, creased and creased, they can have visible and permanent crease marks.

BSP’s Philippine Currency Fitness Guide identifies several visual criteria that make banknotes unfit for circulation.

Among the visual description of banknotes that fall under the criteria of unsuitable for recirculation, we can cite:

  • Dirt or the presence or accumulation of dirt or any substance on the surface of the banknote may cause discoloration or aging of the substrate.
  • Obvious and visible marks or stains on the surface of the banknote, including drawings, writings, ink stamps and oil stains.
  • Crumpled or soft appearance.
  • Apparent discoloration of any design on the banknote.
  • Presence of significant creases due to creasing or folding of the banknote.

During this time, a ticket is considered mutilated if it matches any of the following visual descriptions:

  • Any obvious or visible breakage, hole or loss of any part of the ticket.
  • Presence of adhesives – tape, stickers, glue, gum or staple wire – or any material not originally on the banknote.
  • Separation of the front and back of the banknote.
  • Damage from fire, water or chemicals.

READ: Do you have a P1000 polymer bill? Don’t bend it and other do’s and don’ts

The central bank has also previously reminded the public how to properly handle polymer 1,000 peso notes.

According to BSP guidelines, here is how to properly handle polymer banknotes:

  • Keep bills flat: Place polymer bills in wallets that are long enough for the bills to fit properly.
  • KEEP THEM CLEAN: Clean dirty or soiled polymer banknotes with a damp cloth. The surface can also be cleaned using alcohol-based disinfectants, but should be immediately wiped with a dry cloth afterwards.
  • Use them as payment for goods and services: don’t hoard polymer bills. It is also forbidden to buy or sell them at higher prices.

The BSP pointed out that “banknotes with crease marks can still be put back into circulation and used as payment for goods and services.”

‘Do not be afraid’

Lopez advised the public not to panic in case others face a similar situation where an establishment refuses to accept the folded polymer banknotes of 1,000P.

“As far as I know, banks can replace these notes. Just in case your notes are accidentally bent, the banks will accept it,” she said.

“Don’t be afraid and think that your tickets will no longer have any value just because they were accidentally bent,” she added.

In an official statement released on Monday, BSP clarified that folded paper or polymer banknotes can still be used for payments and transactions. It was amid concerns and issues raised by people online following Lopez’s viral social media post.

“The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) informs the public that folded banknotes, whether paper or polymer, can still circulate and be accepted for payment. As such, retailers and banks should accept them for everyday payment transactions,” BSP said in the statement.

The central bank also explained that the recent guidelines issued by the BSP on the proper treatment of polymer banknotes also apply to existing paper banknotes.

“The handling guidelines have been issued to educate the public on the proper use of polymer and paper banknotes to maintain their integrity and extend their lifespan,” BSP said.

“If a person has doubts about the value and/or authenticity of a banknote, they are encouraged to visit any bank for assistance. The bank will then return the note to the BSP for exam.

READ: BSP reminder to banks: Accept damaged and mutilated peso bills that meet requirements


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