When I first left home for Europe, I hadn’t anticipated my passport dying on me while I try to juggle life as a new mum. Being away from family and therefore not being able to pass her off to someone like a babysitter meant that I would have to take her everywhere with me, especially during the weekdays when Nil is at the office, working away. I always hope that she’ll never give me any trouble while I run my errands and find myself sometimes being pleasantly blessed & surprised, like going to a Plano dentist and enjoying it!
Anyway, there have been numerous “complaints” about how long and tedious it is renewing a Malaysian passport overseas. Well, I would agree IF you are working. For a SAHM like myself, it’s not that bad, provided you prepare yourself with the necessary documents and such before making the trip to the embassy. For passport renewal and application (it’s the same procedure actually), you’ll need
- a copy of the IM.42 form filled out (you can print it out from here but make sure the end result is double sided instead of on two separate sheets of paper),
- two passport sized photos (no polaroids, blue background please and make sure it’s bigger than the usual S’pore passport size pic – just tell your usual photographer at the studio that it’s for a M’sian passport),
- the original and photocopy of your M’sian IC (front and back on the same side of one A4 paper)
- the original and photocopy of your S’porean IC/pass
- approximately SGD130 for a 32 page passport
The embassy is located at 301 Jervois Road, near Tiong Bahru MRT – but note that it’s at least a good 20 minutes on foot from the MRT so you may want to catch a cab to the embassy instead. Submissions are only from Mondays to Fridays, starting from 8am till 11:30am. Often, there is already a queue of people at 7:30am as the embassy will only accept 200 applications a day. Once the tally has been filled, they will accept no more so come early if you can.
I arrived just around 8am and after exchanging my POSB bank card for a security pass (you’ll need your IC and S’porean pass so they accept credit cards, bank cards, student passes, so forth), I made my way to the Immigration section and stood in line to get a submission number. Do note that if you don’t have the IM.42 form, you can get it at the same guard house where you get your security pass.
At the Immigration section, there will be someone there to check your documents and such prior to you getting your submission number and there are also photocopying as well as photo ID services available. Then your wait will begin. I was the 30th person and it took about 45 minutes to an hour before it was my turn to submit my papers. At the count for submission, they’ll look at the papers, ask for your thumb print (left and right), then hand a ticket as well as your application back to you for you to proceed to the cashier where you will find yourself parting with around SGD130.
Don’t forget to retain the receipt that will be issued to you upon receipt of payment (and don’t forget to take back your original IC and pass). Collection for passports can be done on the same day but only from 230pm till 415pm. For those who are unable to collect on the same day (like in my case), you have a week to do so.
Overall, the experience was pleasant and fast (by M’sian standards, that is) plus the folks at the embassy were very friendly – especially those working at the guardhouse. I left two hours after arrival and hitched a cab after deciding that I wasn’t going to brave the 20 minute walk to the MRT in the hot sun with Eva in the ring sling. Only downside to the whole thing was that the toilets – while clean – were crampy, there were no changing tables for Eva and I had to breastfeed her outside where it was less crowded and well, more “private”. Otherwise, thumbs up to the whole experience!
For more info, please visit the High Commission of Malaysia’s website here.