I Lost My Wallet!

by Krantcents · 62 comments

Post image for I Lost My Wallet!

I lost my wallet; does anyone know where it is?  I had cash of at least $100 and 3-4 credit cards.  If you found it, what would you do?  Would you return it?  Would you take the cash?  Would you try to use the credit cards?  You have a choice between what you should do versus what you want to do?  Does it matter if you are having hard times and you need the money? 

If you found my wallet, what would you do?  My address is on my driver’s license which is in my wallet.  Would you call me?  Would you mail it to me?  Why not?  Would you take the money and toss the wallet?  The worst part of losing your wallet is replacing the identification cards (medical), driver’s license, and various other cards.  Generally speaking, most people realize their wallet is missing within a 24 hour period and would cancel the credit cards.  Following this scenario, the store is out any purchases made on the lost credit cards.

Okay, you found my wallet, now what?  You have been staring at it for hours, what are you going to do?  I would recommend doing the right thing.  You are torn between what you could spend a $100 on and doing the right thing.  This is that moment in life where no one except you will know if you did the right thing.  What is the consequence of doing the wrong thing?  You sold out your character or integrity for a paltry $100.  No big deal!  Is that right?  You probably have done this for far less money and often.  Who are these people?  They are your neighbors, friends, and colleagues, fellow members of your church or worst relatives.  Some of you may disagree, my point is they do not wear horns or stick out in any way.

Doing what is right requires an extra effort or standing out in a sea of mediocrity.  We are conditioned to not report errors!  Remember when you were a kid, tattling was considered wrong!  In school, I had to adhere to an honor code.  I was supposed to report infractions.  Silence was considered the same as cheating or condoning the infraction.  For me, there is an almost euphoric feeling when I do the right thing.  Is that lost in other people?  I feel good when I do something nice for somebody.  Why isn’t that encouraged and reinforced?

Why is he making such a big deal over a wallet and $100?  It is important because I do not want to be around people who do not feel the same way as I do.  Let’s personalize this, would you want to have that person around you?  Would you want to invite that person to your home?  Could I leave something valuable out and be confident you would not take it?  If you were a cashier for me and you came up short $20, is it a mistake or are you a thief?  If you did this too often, I would fire you!  Either you are a thief or inept!  It doesn’t matter.  You lost your job.  The moral of this, do the right thing!  By the way, I did not lose my wallet; I used this as a metaphor to express how important it is.  What would you want to happen,  if the wallet is yours?  your parents?  your friends?  What would you do, if you found a wallet?

Photo by:  Martin Kingsley

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Roshawn @ Watson Inc January 10, 2011 at 9:44 am

This would not be a difficult matter at all. While I wouldn’t condemn other decisions, I have lost a wallet before and disparately wanted it returned to me in the same shape I left it. It was returned but lacking some pertinent “stuff.” I would return your wallet if I found it, and my circumstances are irrelevant.

Krantcents January 10, 2011 at 9:55 am

Thank you for your comment. This is one of those circumstances where we do not know someone’s decision. Living with your decision will effect your life.

MoneyCone January 10, 2011 at 9:58 am

I didn’t come across a wallet, but I did get the previous tenant’s mail which happened to contain a $75 gift card for amazon. I didn’t know their current address so did the next best thing – I re-mailed it to my address but with the previous tenant’s name for automatic re-forwarding since it wasn’t a year since they had moved out.

Sadly, they didn’t even bother to send a thank you note…

Krantcents January 10, 2011 at 11:26 am

Thank you for your comment. You did the right thing!

Aomos January 10, 2011 at 11:28 am

My what a great article with such interesting questions – isn’t amazing with these hard times that we would all have to think differently if we found that wallet especially if you were short of cash and there the notes were looking at you – yes this is where your values would stand the test of time as for me my values would keep me true to myself and ensure that it gets back to its rightful owner entact. Aomos

Krantcents January 10, 2011 at 2:15 pm

Thank you for your comment. This is one of those situations where only you can make the right decision because no one else will know.

The Passive Income Earner January 10, 2011 at 2:58 pm

I would simply return it. Call the number if any, or return it to the address. You would still have everything inside. It’s not really lost since it has an owner, it’s just misplaced :)

Krantcents January 10, 2011 at 3:54 pm

Thank you for your comment. I like your attitude. It reveals a great deal about your character.

Squirrelers January 10, 2011 at 4:56 pm

You have to return the wallet. It’s not the property of the finder, and the finder should be able to locate the actual owner based on drivers license or other information in the wallet. It’s simply the right thing to do. Anything else, from what I can tell, would be selfish and not being a good citizen.

The owner, upon receiving his wallet, should nicely thank the finder for locating and returning the property.

Krantcents January 10, 2011 at 5:33 pm

Thank you for your comment. Doing the right thing seems so simple, however why is it an exception? Some people feel they should be rewarded for doing the right thing. Something is wrong with that.

Kris @ Everyday Tips January 11, 2011 at 9:10 am

I don’t think I have your wallet, but it could be hiding all of the end of year statements I have been getting in the mail.

If I did come across it, I would try like heck to return it. I would not snoop or anything, I would just try to find contact information.

I have left my purse behind at restaurants and such, and I so appreciated when I got it back fully intact. I cannot imagine scamming even a dollar from the wallet- I wouldn’t be able to live with myself.

Krantcents January 11, 2011 at 12:14 pm

Thanks for your comment. This is one of those moral or ethical questions that may come up, but only the individual can answer it and no one else will know.

MyMoneyMess January 11, 2011 at 1:13 pm

There would be no question in my mind what to do and no hesitation.

Frankly I have a hard time understanding people who would do anything else, much in the same way I have a hard time understanding a mugger or an identity thief. Their actions baffle me.

Life is so much more enjoyable when you follow the Golden Rule.

Krantcents January 11, 2011 at 1:47 pm

Thank you for your comment. It is one of those issues where the individual is the only one who would know, therefore one has to live with

Money Reasons January 11, 2011 at 2:31 pm

Vegas here I come!!!

Just kidding, I would be calling the second I found it.

Krantcents January 11, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Thanks, it is sort of fantasy thinking! It is what I do when I buy a lottery ticket.

Suba @ Wealth Informatics January 12, 2011 at 6:04 pm

I don’t have your wallet, but I would return it. I wouldn’t have even thought about it twice. It is a great question though! I have no business even taking stuff out of it, I would open it only to find the contact information. I won’t be able to live with me if I decided to keep it. I have lost my purse during my poor student days and got it back empty with just my school id.

Krantcents January 12, 2011 at 8:40 pm

Thanks, I totally agree with you. Character is tested when no one is around.

Jonathan January 12, 2011 at 7:17 pm

I lost my wallet a couple years ago and never got it back. Never had any problems either, but I did close everything right away.

I’m a strong believer in ‘what goes around come around’, and so, not only for the other person’s sake, but for my sake, I’d return it. It wouldn’t be difficult at all to find the person.

Krantcents January 12, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Thanks, whether you believe Karma or not I personally could not live with myself if I kept it.

youngandthrifty January 12, 2011 at 10:36 pm

With a wallet, it’s so personal, I would return the wallet with all the money in it. You can’t just see a drivers license, see the person’s wallet, and take $100 out of it.

My boyfriend actually dropped his wallet out of his pocket while riding his motorbike on a highway, and then returned to find his cards all broken from being run over by tires. The money was missing too! :(

Krantcents January 13, 2011 at 7:32 am

I agree, it is also a decision that no one will know about. It goes to character and integrity. It is sad that someone would sell their character for as little as $100.

Joe Plemon January 13, 2011 at 11:19 am

I must admit that your metaphor fooled me, but believing that you really did lose your wallet made the question all the more pressing. I would do what all the others would do: contact the owner immediately. It amazes me that so many in our society would not do the right thing…and they probably won’t comment on this post either. :)

Krantcents January 13, 2011 at 12:29 pm

You are absolutely right. I enjoy writing about things like this. The real test of one’s character is what you would do when no one else is around.

Little House January 14, 2011 at 12:54 pm

I’ve found lost wallets twice in my life. And twice, I’ve immediately mailed them to the recipient’s address on their driver’s license; cash and all. Hopefully, the recipients were delighted and relieved.

Krantcents January 14, 2011 at 1:00 pm

There is a good feeling in doing the right thing no matter what the other does or does not do.

Roger Hicks January 25, 2011 at 10:31 am

Glad to hear you’ve said this. It’s wise not to ask of anything in return and just know your doing something nice.

Invest It Wisely January 18, 2011 at 1:15 pm

I would likely return the wallet as I found it to the local police station. As for money, I once found a $50 bill on the street in front of a money exchange. I was in Asia and it was a $50 AUD, so I looked around for a white guy. I didn’t see any Australians or any white guys at all, and I waited about 5 minutes for him to return. He never showed up, so I ended up cashing the money in, though I felt bad for the guy.

Krantcents January 18, 2011 at 6:49 pm

Character is tested when no one is around! Good character is fragile and can slip away. I happy yours is still intact.

Roger Hicks January 25, 2011 at 10:29 am

Knowing that I would be disappointed to loose my wallet full of cash or not I’d return it. If the wallet had a drivers license in it and they lived nearby then I would take it. If not, then on to sending it or down to the police station. Doing the right thing or a good thing is far better than doing wrong.

Heartsndstars January 31, 2011 at 5:42 pm

I would definitely return it…I lost my wallet last Thursday with my only Christmas and birthday presents in it ( 2 gift cards to target and a $2 bill) I was saving those gift cards so that I could save some money when I go college next year and buy things I need like underwear and socks and things….but it’s gone now….my debit card is in there along with my drivers permit and motorcycle permit and some girl returned my no longer useful I.D. to my photography teacher but nothing else was returned….I wont die until I find out who took it…and they wont be happy when I know who they are…I don’t hurt people but I can make their life suck really bad….I’m just really upset and I want it back…..it will cost me soooo much to replace everything and part of my life and my memories will be gone with that wallet

Krantcents January 31, 2011 at 11:30 am

Sorry to hear that, but it is not enough to affect you long term.

Rickolivieri April 3, 2011 at 3:51 am

return it the same way i found it…INTACT!

krantcents April 3, 2011 at 4:29 pm

Thanks, it is good to know there are some honest people out there!

KimC May 5, 2011 at 8:48 pm

My hubby lost his wallet just a couple of days ago, and we’re praising God that somebody with integrity found it and turned it in to the gas station attendant, who also demonstrated integrity along with his successor the following morning. When we tracked down the wallet, his $90 was still there.
Of course we took precautions anyway – the debit card will be replaced, and because he [temporarily] had his social security card in his wallet, we also quit procrastinating and finally set up a Life Lock account to prevent identity theft.

krantcents May 5, 2011 at 11:07 pm

It is sort of nice that there are some good people left in this world! Too often, we see so much less, the negative side of life. Good for you.

ann @ merchant services May 7, 2011 at 2:30 am

I lost my wallet and I have all the identification cards there including my debit card but the person who found it did not return my wallet. It is so sad that I need to buy another wallet and set up another account. Well, in my case I will give back the wallet. No matter how big or small the amount is, if it’s not yours you need to give it back.

krantcents May 7, 2011 at 2:51 am

Good for you! Character is measured by what you do when no one is around. Unfortunately, good character is rare.

payday loans online May 15, 2011 at 6:12 pm

Make calls to places you’ve gone recently (since you last saw your wallet) including restaurants, theaters, and the like and ask if they have a lost wallet. They will need a description. Usually the name on an ID or a specific member’s card will do. Even larger places, like malls, have lost-and-found offices or security centers. Don’t assume that the movie theater or other business would call you. Some businesses do not make calls due to concerns that it might disclose the fact that you were somewhere or with someone that you do not want made known.

krantcents May 15, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Thank you for your comment.

Chynalove August 7, 2011 at 10:10 am

I was at a restaurant this evening and I found a wallet with over $1300 inside. I returned the wallet INTACT to the restaurant’s manager. I immediately felt as though I should return the wallet; however, I am out of work, behind on bills, need gas in my car, etc…I coulod have REALLY benefited from the cash , aLthough I know it wasn’t my cash to keep. Please tell me I did the right thing!!

krantcents August 7, 2011 at 2:08 pm

You did, although it may not feel that good under your particular circumstances. I am sure the owner of the wallet appreciates your honesty. You can feel good that your character is still in tact even if your current situation is throwing you a curve. Good luck and feel good that you did the right thing.

UltimateSmartMoney October 7, 2011 at 2:22 pm

It is hard to do the right thing, but I do feel like there are many people out there who actually does the right thing and return the wallet.  I have never ran into this situation where I found a wallet but if I did, I would return it using the address.

krantcents October 7, 2011 at 11:07 pm

Although I never lost my wallet it was stolen once and I just hate the inconvenience of replacing the documents.

Lctomchin October 24, 2011 at 12:20 am

I found a wallet and have called the credit card companies of the cards inside the wallet, in hope that they would contact the owner and give him my phone number so I can send it back. No luck so far. I tried finding a phone number on my own and paid to find it on an internet site but the number was not in service. I hope that the address on the driver’s ID is correct because if I don’t hear from the owner, I will send it back (he lives in another city) and hope it does not come back to me because of an old address.

krantcents October 24, 2011 at 12:51 am

I hope it works. I found a dollar in my classroom the other day. If I ask the students who lost a dollar, I will hear from more than the person who actually lost it. Instead, I decided to donate the dollar to a charity helping children. Doing the right thing requires thought and action.

Cash Flow Mantra November 16, 2011 at 4:12 pm

I would return the wallet and call the individual myself based upon the information available.

krantcents November 17, 2011 at 12:56 am

Of course, I wonder how many would keep it. Some justify keeping the cash as a reward. I probably sound a little cynical

Girlpower147 November 17, 2011 at 10:48 pm

I lost my wallet like twice…. in the trains and none were not nice and return it back………

krantcents November 18, 2011 at 2:42 pm

I wrote this article because I want to spread good values in character or in general. Mybe I can get someone to change.

Angel November 18, 2011 at 7:08 am

I lost my wallet twice on trains and no one returned it back to me before….

krantcents November 19, 2011 at 12:36 am

Sorry to hear that, good character is a rare trait!

Angel November 21, 2011 at 2:00 am

it has my driver license with my information…. would people return it 

krantcents November 21, 2011 at 2:08 am

When my wallet was stolen, the worst part of it was replacing identification and credit cards. These things are worthless to the other person and are probably tossed.

Angel November 22, 2011 at 1:42 am

I know these people are bad to return thing back to the owner….  I wish more people would be consist try to find the owner  return it back to me.

krantcents November 22, 2011 at 2:02 am

It is harder to do the right thing! It takes no effort to keep the money and toss the wallet.

Angel November 28, 2011 at 9:50 pm

I agree with you Cash Flow Mantra….people should take response of finding the owner and return a lost wallet. I already lost my wallet for a week. I know use my debit/ Credit card and I got fraud trans on it… would the bank would be able to track who did it……… krantcents….. I think you informed people about people should return wallet back to owners……….. and make it clearly……….

Nigel November 29, 2011 at 2:33 am

Hey Krant

I’ll return it – no point living or spending whatever money inside if it’s going to eat away at my conscience – I rather enjoy self-made money better. =)

krantcents November 29, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Character is something we try to teach, but I not sure if it works. Honesty is part of character.

krantcents November 29, 2011 at 2:48 pm

I could never enjoy spending it either.

Collipup December 3, 2011 at 7:28 pm

I found a wallet, and I pocketed the cash. I felt so bad I did, and I want to give it back, but it’s too late. Next time this happens, I’m gonna give it back with everything in it. I didn’t take the cards or anything…I know that is really, really bad to do. I needed the money. If it makes whoever is reading this feel better, it went to important things like bills and stuff.

krantcents December 4, 2011 at 4:31 am

It is a slippery slope, ths time a little dishonesty because you need it, next time just because it is easier.

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