Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to the Asian countries - China, The Philippines, Thailand, etc.
8 posts • Page 1 of 1
His name is Tuan and he found me on Skype through Nguyen Thao Tran Thanh, one of the women I met from www.vietnameselove.com. They go to the same university together and are friends with each other. He seems like a nice, normal guy. He said when I go to Vietnam next year he hopes to have as much free time as possible because he wants to show me around and spend as much time as possible with me. Tuan is 21, an auto mechanical engineering major in university (will graduate next year). His dream is to work for a big international automobile manufacturer as an engineer in HCM City (he's in HCM now). He's originally from Dong Thap, a small town in the Mekong Delta in the far south of Vietnam. His parents are farmers and went through a lot to send him to university in the city. He's a car lover.
This morning after I woke up I saw his messages saying that he nearly broke up with his girlfriend. I will post his messages in their original form:
"hey my friend, big big problem. I feel bad. My love almost broken. I don't live without it. Noooo...... I was kill my self, stress. Omgmgogogogog...... I need to go this trip with my girlfriend. Oh no. I think I will sell my phone to get money for this trip. Every year, my girlfriend have field work (field trip?) last 2 years she go with her school, but this year, she go with some friend in class. In highland is Dalat. I can't stay here waiting her, I can't. We have a big big fight, I don't need she so there, in first year she is go there once, but now she still chosse it. I recommend her should go Mekong Delta, but she not, topic that many people ahev already drawn. But this is our hometown, it so sacred, so special, we almost say godbye. But we not yet. Finally we got a clue, we will go there together. I can beside her, take care, and protect her. I must do that. My love is noblest in my life, even than myself, I must go this trip. I hope you will understood my situation, so now, i need some money to go with her, omg I don't have reserve, i not saves money i had but I paid to get driver's license. so my friend, i need your help."
He's never asked for money before. Should I believe him?
Many 'regular' people in poorer countries like Vietnam are gonna be perpetually short on cash. It's a fact of life in such environments. It's also a likely motivation for that guy befriending you on Skype in the first place.
You can do what you like. But my personal attitude is that they survived before they knew me so if I don't help, they will manage. Sending money to people like that sends a signal - that first world guys are ripe for the picking. If you send him money, he'll probably tell some of his friends and family and some of them will probably try to repeat what he accomplished by striking up friendships with other first world foreigners with the view to eventually extract some financial help.
Consider alligators in Florida. You're never supposed to feed them. Because once you do, they learn to associate you with food. So when you don't throw them food, they may just try to eat you instead. With 3rd worlders, once you start 'helping' them, I think they start seeing you in a different light - you go from being friend to being a potential source of income. And the latter is much harder to come by than the former so once they put you in that box, you probably won't be able to get out of it. The friendship if it ever even existed in the first place will be over.
I do believe Tuan's case is genuine, but in reality I am not in a position to help him either because my credit cards are under control. I will see whether my inability to help him will make him change his attitude towards me. If it does, then I will know who he really is.
Sounds like a scam to me. I would personally never send money to anyone online. Ever. The only time I ever sent money to someone was to my fiancée, who later became my wife. People can come across as very likable. They befriend you first, so it becomes harder to say no. He's claiming to be suicidal, depressed, how he really badly needs the trip... he's fishing for pity. These guys always follow a formula like that. Scammers can be very sophisticated. Don't fool yourself for even a minute, my young friend.
Copy and paste this message back to him:
"Dear Tuan, I am so sorry to hear what happened. Yes, as your best friend in the US, I am more than glad to help you. But as you may know, it is very difficult for me to wire money to Vietnam. I think the easiest way to do it is to wire the money directly into your account. Please provide me with your full name, the number of the debit card that you would like me to wire the money into, its expiration date, and the security code in the back of the card, so I can have my bank wire the money to you tomorrow. You can pay me back in person once I am in Vietnam. I hope you feel better soon...Wish there are more things I can do for you..."
Once he sent you those info, pm them to me.
In all seriousness, it smells like a scam from a million miles away. Just make up some excuse about you not having any money right now but can offer to give him advise on financing. If he stops chatting with you after that, then you'll know the guy's a scammer from the beginning.
Problem resolved. I am still buddies with him, he understands my situation, and he got the money from another friend of his in HCM City. He told me he doesn't know how much he needs, but yes someone else helped him and we are still friends.
I have a couple of dozen friends in Vietnam and not one of them has ever asked for money. Even 20 year old university students will just about fight to pay the bill at a coffee shop or restaurant. I am 55 years old and I have to fight to pay half.
So, yeah, it's screwed up that the guy is asking for money. Tell him to stop being a p***y about the girl too.
"Pick a point and go to it."
-- Dr John Hunsucker, speaking about canoeing on Georgia's Lake Lanier, with its irregular shape, and 1000 miles of meandering shoreline
8 posts • Page 1 of 1
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