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Back and forth over the Causeway and Second Link PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 18 October 2010 17:04

When you return to Singapore …

- Get to the Singapore side before 6.15 am for the better chance of a clear run.

- Otherwise, from about 9.45 am – 4 pm are the least crowded times.

- There are restrictions as to what you can take in with you. These include any meat products including hamburgers-in-buns. Rules change from time to time and there are prominent signs going into and coming out of Johor.

- leave time (at least 10 minutes) in case you are unlucky enough to be the random spot check car for that day and time. Happens at Tuas and at Woodlands. Feels highly embarrassing when you are pulled aside but still totally visible and they give your car and you a public third degree. Put on that thick skin, turn your back at staring motorists – you know it is not personal and full cooperation will get it over with more quickly.

- I once saw in passing a car being given a random check at the Woodlands presumably for drugs with a beautiful German shepherd and its handler, the dog snuffling and all over every square inch of the car. Worst embarrassment for the poor guy, with the only possible reaction: turn your back on passing cars, grin and bear it since they are only doing their duty and it just wasn’t your lucky day.

- Under no circumstances leave without a full tank, if you intend coming back soon. This is one of the benefits of living in Johor so why waste it?

… and when you come back to Johor …

- Until you have the easy pass to get in, have the forms filled in ahead of time. Forms are available at both Immigration checkpoints if you have run out. It is possible to have these printed out on your computer by a simple template: after that you just need to sign the form.

- Don’t leave it too late to leave because the build-up begins from 5 pm. It is, of course, much worse at the Woodlands, although the clearance appears to be very efficient.

- I have noticed that Tuas does more petrol tank spot checks than Woodlands. These are more likely to occur between 2 and 5 pm, when there is presumably less traffic.

- If you drove around more than expected, it is worth it to top up the petrol tank with S$5 or $10 for peace of mind as you pass under the eye of the customs man. Damn!

- Note what items are taxable and carry them through the red channel for examination. We Singaporeans are so intimidated by such rules we automatically seem to do this.

- Even things destined for charitable distribution might be taxable e.g. a used TV set. Customs people on the Johor side are, however, good about bags and boxes of used clothing/toys/shoes and such when you explain who will be getting them. “Untok anak yatim piatu” means ‘for orphans’. Strictly speaking, you need to apply for exemption even for things that are donated free of charge.

- Ask for and keep a small stack of immigration forms for the friends and visitors you will inevitably have to ferry over one of these days – saves a lot of time.

- REMEMBER: if you are coming in late in the day when it is already pretty dark, to park in a lighted area if you should stop at the Rehat after the toll on the Tuas side. It is a spot where car windows have been known to be shattered for access to the car’s contents … including your laptop with vital data.


Last Updated on Monday, 05 September 2011 15:55