It has been three years since the 21st Tenka-ichi Budokai, the fall of the Red Ribbon Army, and the battle at Uranai Baba's palace. Yamcha, Kuririn, Muten Roshi, Bulma, Oolong, Puar, and Lunch are eager to get on their way to Papaya Island - where the 22nd Tenka-ichi Budokai will be held. Yamcha and Kuririn are eager to show off their new skills, while Bulma is excited to see Son Goku again. "Goku's probably on his way to the stadium as we speak!"
"Hey! Stop bullying weaker people!"
"Stay out of this, runt!"
Three days before the Tenka-ichi Budokai begins, Goku meets a young fox named Konkichi. Konkichi, determined to pay back Goku for rescuing him from a group of thugs, drives Goku to the nearby Yahhoy City airport - as Papaya Island is across the planet!
"Eat all you want, bro! I have tons of canned food!"
"Why do you call me "bro"? My name's Son Goku."
At the airport, Konkichi is surprised to learn that Goku has been traveling around the world with absolutely zero money - and it'll cost 15,000 zeni for one ticket. "Then what did you do when you wanted to sleep or eat?!" "You need money to sleep and eat?" The added problem is that the next flight to Papaya Island leaves in only a few hours, and the following flight isn't until next week - after the Budokai! Konkichi attempts to steal tickets from a rich older couple, but he bumps into a police officer, and pretends he found them instead. But the damage is done, so he takes Goku from the airport and comes up with a new plan.
Konkichi takes Goku to a local fair, where Goku saves a little boy's balloon. Unfortunately, a bird pops it, and the boy bursts into tears until Konkichi gives him a candy, cheering him up.
"If you pay just 3 zeni and make the bell ring, you'll win 30,000 zeni!"
Suffice it to say, Goku wins the cash.
With enough money to buy them both tickets, Konkichi and Goku head back to the airport. But along the way, they run into none other than Uranai Baba! (Who Goku greets as Urenai Baba, again) She had watched Goku win the money, and congratulates him on the training. But she doesn't much like Konkichi, and asks why those three thugs really attacked him earlier. Weirded out by the old fortuneteller, Konkichi sneaks off ... and who does he encounter but...
Konkichi owes them 50,000 zeni, due to gambling debts. They gladly take Goku's 30,000 zeni from him, then force him to do a job for them if he hopes to pay the rest off...
They force Konkichi to take the fall for them, so that they can get away with bank robbery. Konkichi tries to explain the situation to Goku, but the police won't let him - until Uranai Baba uses a Jedi Mind Trick on the officers. Konkichi explains about the gambling debts and how he'd hoped to go with Goku to Papaya Island and leave his life of crime behind him.
And so Goku finds the crooks so that they can "talk things over".
Konkichi, who for the first time in his life has a friend in Goku, is let off the hook and the real criminals taken in. But Goku has missed his flight, and will have to swim to Papaya Island. (Yup. Swim. Across the world.... admittedly, Goku's done stranger things.) But the young boy from the fair sees Konkichi and comes over to him happily, giving him another friend. (D'awww) Goku says goodbye to the pair of them, and Uranai Baba, then dives into the water to swim toward the Tenka-ichi Budokai!
But he's not the only one headed for the Budokai!!!