|Felt Like this Dear Jumping About|
So I decided to record down my experience.
First things first, this is the circumstances of my situation before trying to convert. Don’t know if you are in the same boat but the below was my profile.
1. I am a Malaysian
2. I have a Malaysian Driving Licence Class D
3. I have no Motorbike Licence in Malaysia
4. I have no Driving Licence but I have a Motorbike Licence in Singapore
(I Took my Driving Licence in Malaysia and Took my Motorbike Licence in Singapore)
5. I have never converted any licence between the two countries
6. I work in Singapore on a Work pass
It was hard trying to decipher the information from the net, especially between Singapore and Malaysia for Malaysian citizen as a lot of the rules publish is meant for general foreigners and not really focus on the special relationship that Singapore and Malaysia has. Some information tells of corruptions and ways to avoid getting blacklisted and some blatantly just condemns each countries for being petty and making life difficult for the common people.
I stand neutral on this for I feel that both Malaysia and Singapore has their point of view but still one small fry can’t avoid being caught up in the mind-set of the whole.
Anyway I decided the best way was to stop speculating and just walk in to get direct information. This prove to be even challenging as most information at counter given by word of mouth by the guards or the information desk lack to instil any confidence.
I walked up to Urban Transformation Centre (UTC) in Johor Bahru at Galleria Kotaraya going straight for the Jabatan Pengangkutan Jalan (JPJ) or in English Land Transport Authority of Malaysia. Going to the queue number ticket collection which had a guard there to assist on directing and dispensing the correct type of queue number I asked for conversion of licence from Singapore to Malaysia.
The guard refused to give me a queue ticket number. Go to the main headquarters office is Taman Daya, Johor Bahru he said. JPJ does the conversion of licence but this office/branch does not do it.
Puzzled, and a bit suspicious I thank him and left googling the main headquarters of JPJ at Taman Daya.
Deciding that it may be a coy I returned a few weeks later to the same place trying to get a queue number again. This time I got the same reply from a different guard. Go to Taman Daya he said.
Guess it’s true that I have to get to the main HQ of JPJ at Taman Daya
Working in Singapore and trying to convert my licence during my free time was not easy, crossing the border to get things done was time consuming. Luckily Johor government working hours were different and Sunday was considered a working day while Friday and Saturday a weekend.
A few months later I went to Taman Daya paying a RM 30 for a grab ride to the main JPJ HQ in Johor. The actual address was:
Karung Berkunci No.714,
80990 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
The complex was huge and first off was to navigate to the right department. As I follow the signboard getting closer to the goal, lots of so called “runners” were loitering around downstairs and nearby the entrance to the office building for the actual changing of licence, renew, road tax etc.
As I walked a few runners pester me on what my purpose was here.
What do you want? One of the runners called.
Renew Licence? Change Licence? Road Tax?
I decided there was no harm extracting information so I asked which way to the change licence was.
You want to convert licence from Malaysia to Singapore right?
They will blacklist you, but I can help you get around that.
I felt annoyed that before understanding what I wanted I was already labelled.
Oh, you want to convert from Singapore back to Malaysia licence, but last time when you convert to Singapore Licence did they cut your Malaysia Licence? They probably blacklist you already and you won’t be able to convert back until you pay (bribe) them to erase you from the blacklist
Annoyed that I could not even get two words in before being labelled again I decided runners were the stupidest idea to get information from.
Ignoring all the runners, I walked up to the actual office to the queue counter.
The officer asked me if I had a letter from Singapore.
Letter ?? What letter ??
The officer told me that I require a letter from the Singapore Transport Authority to verify that I have no outstanding offences for the past 6 month. I could get it from the Singapore JPJ and with that the process for converting licence can be done. I would also need a photocopy of driving licence, identification card, photo, passport, work pass etc … anything related all photocopy he said but most important was to get that letter.
He even gave me the form for converting licence but would not give me a queue number as I did not have all the documents required.
Helpful information indeed but the monotone conversation told my guts that the small disdain of Malaysian going over to Singapore for work was still there.
I decided that if I was going to convert, it will not be in Johor but will travel back to Kuala Lumpur to do it.
Obtaining the Letter from Singapore Transport Authority
Funny thing is …. If you google Singapore Transport Authority like I did, you will get (LTA) which has nothing to do with driving licence record keeping.
I went to the nearest neighbourhood police and asked for advice and even then the police was uncertain but referred me to the Traffic Police HQ at the address below:
10 Ubi Avenue 3 Singapore 408865
Making my way there one weekday when I was off work, I entered the front door asking the guard for guidance on obtaining the letter for converting licence back to Malaysia.
Ironically the guard said:
Why convert? Singapore licence is international and it’s better here.
I have my own reasons I told him and he then pointed me in the direction to the main office. Go in and ask but I am not sure if this is the place he said.
Going in I was greeting with a police officer in full uniform. Explain to him my situation and he gave me a queue number not explain much.
Once it was my turn, all the counter asked was my Singapore bike licence and after a few moments requested for payment of SGD 10. Payment has to be made using NETS only and no cash transaction is accepted.
Paid and viola, I now had the letter from the traffic department of Singapore stating that the licence is valid and I have no offence pending with the Singapore state.
The whole process took less than 20 minutes including waiting time.
Few months later I managed to get leave and headed back to Kuala Lumpur to get the licence finally converted. The location I went was at Bangi a sub branch of JPJ in the Selangor state.
Jalan 7/7c, Seksyen 7, 43000 Bandar Baru Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
Went to the queue line to obtain a queue number and the officer told me to speak to their head officer first. Guess it’s not a normal procedure converting licence. Pass both my licence to the officer and I was question the following;
Why do you want to convert licence – (Go Home I Said)
Did you convert this licence from Malaysia to Singapore – (Nope … I took it in Singapore)
Wait a moment. After a few minutes the head officer came back.
Yes you can convert back no issue, but you will need a letter from the Singapore traffic authority. I have it I told the officer and passed the letter.
A few more minutes later and the officer asked me to get a photocopy of the following
2. Driving Licence of both Malaysia and Singapore
3. Identification card
Finally the officer said to me … I will ‘potong’ cut your Singapore licence once it’s converted, is it ok with you?
Sure I said … I was not trying to cheat the system anyway.
They finally gave me a queue number and within a few minutes I was up at the counter again. After a few types the officer just stared at the screen …. Waiting … then I heard their internal conversation
(Notified Singapore already? …. Yes you may proceed)
Interesting I thought … so there is some sort of integrated system now. Shortly after he cut the edge of my Singapore licence and kept the licence with the document for processing. Asked if I would get back the cut piece, they said they will keep it and send it back.
Processing the conversion of licence I had to pay the fee of
Add on Class – RM 5
Conversion of Licence – RM 20
That’s was all and a few minutes later I collected my new licence fully integrated with motorbike (B2) and car (D)
Interesting note was My Singapore motorbike licence was limited to 200cc but after conversion I am now certified to 250cc. A bigger bike was now a possibility ….
1st step done …. Now to find wheels for the road trip