Sunday, 28 June 2020

Guide to Renewing Long Term Social Visit Pass (Spouse Visa) in Malaysia - June 2020

Guide to Renewing Long Term Social Visit Pass in Malaysia 2020
(otherwise known as a Spouse Visa or Spouse Pass)

I went through the renewal process in June 2020 at the Jalan Duta Centre in KL, the process may be different if you are using another state office.

The Immigration website says that LTSVP are granted for up to 5 years. However, at Jalan Duta (KL) the maximum now granted is 1 year, even if you have previously been given a longer pass.

Due to the COVID-19 movement control restrictions the process was completely different from previously and is much better as you can now make an appointment online and the LTSVP is issued the same day you submit your application.

For the LTSVP renewal process the following forms need to be completed:

1) Statutory Declaration that the marriage is still subsisting (1 copy) with 1 photo each of the applicant & Malaysian spouse affixed to it

2) Form Imm.38 (1 copy)

3) Form Imm.55 (1 copy) 

You can get the forms from Immigration or download them from here

You will also need to bring the following to your appointment:

a) Applicant's Passport
b) Malaysian spouse’s Identification Card
c) Photocopy of applicant’s Passport data page
d) Photocopy of last entry stamp into Malaysia from the applicant’s Passport
e) Photocopy of current LTSVP
f) Photocopy of Malaysian spouse’s Identification Card (both sides) 
g) Photocopy of Marriage Certificate (also bring the original as Immigration may want to see it)

If you have children you need to bring copies of their birth certificates.

Note that the Immigration website previously stated that the husband’s/wife’s birth certificate needs to be submitted as well. Other people have also said that a copy of the deeds/tenancy agreement for your house/apartment and 3 months of utility bills are needed. I was not asked for any of these but it is worth bringing them in case you are.

Step by Step guide: 

1) Make an appointment online at http://sto.imi.gov.my/ . Make sure you choose [VISA] - LANJUTAN PAS (JANGKA PANJANG) / LONG TERM VISIT PASS EXTENSION and not any of the ‘PENGUATKUASA’ options, or you will be turned away when you arrive for your appointment!

2) Complete all the forms. Both the applicant and the Malaysian spouse must sign the Statutory Declaration in front of a Commissioner for Oaths. To save time it is best to do this before you attend your appointment. We had previously used the one downstairs at the Jalan Duta centre, but this time we used one in Lucky Garden for RM20.

3) Both the applicant and the Malaysian spouse go to Immigration with all of the requested documents. Dress rules may be enforced e.g. no shorts/t-shirts/slippers/short skirts; you may be turned away if you are not dressed correctly.

4) We had a 730am appointment so arrived at 645am and were able to park on the road leading to the main gate. Join the queue in the middle of the gate (not the one to the right of the gates which is for JPN). If you arrive later you may need to park in the car park at the Syariah Court and join the queue which can stretch round the corner!

5) When the gate is opened the officers at the gate will check your appointment letter (you must bring a paper copy of your appointment email) and passport/IC. You  then go to the main building to have your temperature taken before going upstairs to have your forms checked. You will be asked to fill in a health declaration and, if your LTSVP expired during the MCO, a form to explain why. Only the foreign spouse will be allowed to go past this point and so must take all of the documents, including the Malaysian spouse’s original IC, and a credit card or debit card to make payment as cash is not accepted. The Malaysian spouse needs to wait outside.

6) At the entrance to the visa department your documents will be checked again and you have to turn off your phone. Your temperature is taken again and you will be given a queue number.

7) Once inside your number will be called and you submit your forms and supporting documents. Wait for your number to be called again so that you can make payment (RM90 per year). Be aware that tickets for the payment counter are not called in order.

8) Your number will be called again and you will get your passport back with a new LTSVP. Check the correct pass and period has been given. On this occasion I only received a 1 year renewal despite previously having a 5 year pass. The whole process took 1 hour from the gate being opened to getting the new pass, but if you do not get there early it will take longer.

If you need more information join the following Facebook Groups which have a lot of useful posts:


and


The Immigration Facebook page also has regular updates:

If you have found this information useful, please consider buying me a coffee by clicking on this link, thanks!

Buy me a coffee at ko-fi.com

Sunday, 8 March 2020

Driving in Malaysia - JPJ Driving Test for foreign licence holders


Changes by JPJ in 2019 mean that a foreign driving licence can no longer be converted to a Malaysian driving licence (except for a few specific cases such as those people on MM2H visas).

The changes also mean that many foreign driving licences now need to be accompanied by an International Driving Permit (IDP).

My licence is from the UK, so the only way to get an IDP is to physically visit a Post Office in the UK or to apply to the AA to obtain one on my behalf and post it to me. However these options require either a visit to the UK every 12 months to renew the IDP (not cheap!) or to send the original copy of my driving licence to the AA every 12 months (I would not have my licence whilst awaiting a reply and there is a possibility it could get lost!).

I therefore decided to take driving lessons and the JPJ driving test, all of which can be done in English (although some BM is still useful!). It is not difficult, but to pass you will need to spend some time and money on the process. You are required to take lessons through an approved instructor/school.

From my experience I think that the minimum time needed is as follows:
1) Theory Class (6 hours, done in 1 day).
2) Theory computer test (15 minutes, but needs to be taken on a separate day).
3) Lessons on closed circuit (6 hours, can be done in 1 day but some schools insist on 3 lessons in 2 hour blocks).
4) Lessons on road (If you have previous driving experience you may not need to do much of this, but it can take up to 10 hours with some schools insisting on 5 lessons in 2 hour blocks).
5) Qualifying Test at Institute (QTI) (1 hour, this is for your instructor to check you are ready for the test).
6) Driving Test (took around 3.5 hours, including a lot of waiting time).
There are compulsory waiting times between some of the stages, but if you already have driving experience then I think the process could be done in less than 3 months.

Once you have passed your test you can apply for a Probationary Driving Licence (PDL) at JPJ and will need to display 'P' stickers on your car windscreen. The cost of a 2 year PDL is RM120. After 2 years you can convert it to a full Competent Driving Licence (CDL).

Cost
There are a wide variety of charges by different driving schools, which seem to range from RM1,500 to RM2,500 for a manual driving licence, with the most expensive including services such as free pick up and drop off and no fee to re-sit in case you fail the test. 

Check where your instructor/school carries out the lessons, as they can be in places such as Subang, Gombak, PJ etc. You may want to choose an instructor/school where lessons take place near you.

The Driving Test:
The basic elements of the driving test (for manual driving licence) are:

RPK (Vehicle Inspection Routine):
Carry out visual checks under bonnet, of road tax, windscreen, tyres, any damage, boot for spare tyre/warning triangle/jack.

RSM (Routine Before Driving):
Check handbrake, gear is in neutral, seat, seat belt, rear view mirror, side mirror, indicators, wipers, hazard lights and horn.

Slope Test:
Stop on a slope with front wheel on yellow line, and then move away when asked to do so by examiner.

Zeds & Esses:
Manoeuvrability test through a zig zag and curved road layout.

Side Parking:
Reverse parking into marked box.

3 Point Turn:
Reverse/turn around in 3 smooth movements.

If you don’t fail any of the above then you will carry out the Road Test with a JPJ examinerThe requirements of this will depend on where you take your test, but generally it is a drive of 3km or 5km for the examiner to test your on road skills.

Links to some driving schools (prices as at Oct 2019):
https://www.facebook.com/onestopdrivingcentre/ (RM1,500. Fast process. Lessons in Gombak)
http://www.sdc.com.my/ (RM2,059. Process seems slow. Lessons in PJ)
https://metrodriving.com.my/en/ (RM2,500. Claim to be the fastest! Lessons in Subang or Puchong)

There are other instructors/schools available. Not all of the above get great reviews online, so check carefully before signing up with any of them!

If you have found this information useful, please consider buying me a coffee by clicking on this link, thanks!

Buy me a coffee at ko-fi.com