Before You Go
Most important thing to obtain before you head over to the Immigration Department to renew your passport is to ensure you have the correct photo per requirement. Do take note that since April 2013, a new passport security measure has been implemented where the background of the photo is WHITE. You are required to wear a dark top (to frame the shoulder and chest). A decent photo shop should be aware of the requirement.
|Requirement by Immigration Department Malaysia|
The last I renewed my passport was in late 2008 when I was required to travel to Milan for work. It was the old passport where the photos and details were imprinted and laminated at the inside front cover. It is also non-ICAO (pronounced as I-ko) compliance (ICAO is International Civil Aviation Organisation) or non-biometric.
|ICAO logo at the bottom|
My work is requiring me to travel again and with my passport having less than 6-months of validity, I need to renew it. I headed to Immigration Department at Kementerian Dalam Negeri (KDN), Jalan Duta on Sunday. Intention was to arrive by 7.30am and line up for the number.
|You have yourself to blame |
for waking up late
So, what do you do with so much time to kill?
Renew my Identity Card. The Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (JPN) is just downstairs!
|New Identity card done within the waiting hours!|
The typical waiting time is about 1minute per person. This is averaged out from the numbers of counter opened and processing time. Then at the handing over of the document, it takes about 2minutes for the officer to re-confirm and re-authorise your thumb prints before giving you the print out. You will need to hand over your IC at this point for verification purposes.
|Flowchart for renewal|
With the payment done, you will get your IC back with a payment slip and your waiting number. Return in an hour to collect the passport. Should you only managed to make payment after 12pm (as the centre closes at 1pm), you may be asked to return the next day to collect the Passport.
By the time I made the payment, it was 11.30am. It took me total of 2hours 30mins from arriving to payment. With 133 person in front of me, the 1-min/person rule seems about right. I went back to KDN at about 12.45pm after having a fantastic lunch at Coffee 5 Cups. It is just down the road and no better way to actually sit down and enjoy a cup of Peaberry coffee and some food.
|Ask for the Day's Special - you may just land a surprise bento set|
|5 years back, the passport was only 32 pages, now 50 is standard. No more choices of 64 pages for heavy traveller.|
|Black and white photo on (new) Polycarbonate sheet vs (old) printed in the inside front cover|
|Serial number on horizontal plane (new) vs vertical on old.|
|Awesome mini-photo with hologram effect showing MYS and Photo at different angle|
|The Polycarbonate sheet. Laminated plastic. If this page is torn (high potential), you lose your identity.|
|Credit where it's due.|
- Go early to line up so you can get the documents done. The later you go, the longer you have to wait.
- Do not blame the officers for "slow service" when you were the one arriving late. Be fair to them - total processing time and payment time is actually less than 20minutes. That is with 133 person in front of me.
- Try not to bring food into the immigration department. Sadly, the place was littered. Some Malaysians lack civic-consciousness.
- Do dress appropriately. Have respect for others that do not share your fashion sense (or lack of).
- Always say THANK YOU. The officers are human too. ;-)
I went home and was surprised by Wifey presenting me with a new passport holder. :) She said since I've started a new job and expected to travel a fair bit - looking good doing it doesn't harm ;-) Thank you wifey!