A taxi driver was awarded around US$24 from his company Monday for going out of his way to return a backpack containing $5,000, an iPad and two cameras to a forgetful customer.
Hoang Thanh Hung, a driver for the Vinasun taxi firm, received a certificate of merit and the cash reward.
Huynh Quoc Kien, an overseas Vietnamese, and his family caught Hung’s cab to travel from their home on Tan Da Street in District 5 to District 11 at around 5 p.m. on July 29.
After leaving them, Hung picked up two female customers who found the backpack on the floor of the cab.
Hung said he recalled his journey that day and was sure the bag belonged to Kien, so he drove back to Tan Da without opening it.
Kien said he only realized he'd lost his bag half an hour after stepping out of the cab.
He called Vinasun but was told that tracking down his driver would take a long time since he'd had hailed a random cab on the street instead of contacting the dispatcher.
They returned home only to find Hung waiting for them.
Kien said the bag also contained four passports, six US and Vietnamese cell phone cards as well as Singaporean and Malaysian currency.
While taxi drivers in Vietnam have gotten a bad name for meter scams and a reluctance to give proper change, a source from Vinasun said its drivers have returned an estimated VND3.4 billion ($160,500) worth of property to their forgetful customers in at least 681 cases this year.