For many of us, driving to Malaysia is the perfect respite from our busy daily lives in Singapore. Not only is it relatively near, the favourable exchange rate also means accommodation, food and entertainment are much cheaper. If you own a car, driving there instead of taking public transport can reduce the hassle as well, not to mention that you can buy and load your car with your shopping bags! While road trips with your loved ones are always an exciting adventure but not being prepared could cause you to be stuck in an unpleasant situation. DirectAsia has rounded up a list of useful tips you need to know when driving to Malaysia.
Before Setting Off
Before deciding on the exciting places you want to go for shopping and delicious food, here’s what you need to prepare first:
1.Know the rules
You must have a minimum three-quarter tank of petrol when departing Singapore. Ensure that you and all passengers are carrying valid passports. You are also reminded to keep these in your vehicle at all times:
- A valid copy of your vehicle’s certificate of insurance
- A digital copy or printout of your vehicle’s road tax validity
2. Do I need to pay any toll?
Yes. The toll charges vary ($1 – $1.30 for cars), depending on whether you use the Woodlands Checkpoint or Tuas Checkpoint. You can pay the toll charges by inserting a NETS CashCard or a CEPAS-compliant stored value card into the card reader installed at the immigration booths.
3. Car Insurance
Having a valid car insurance is mandatory in Singapore, but it does not automatically mean you will be covered when you drive your car overseas. Having your car insurance coverage when in Malaysia is extremely important for several reasons. For example, if your car breaks down or gets into an accident in Malaysia and it’s completely immobile, you’ll need a tow truck. If your insurance doesn’t cover this cost, you might have to pay for towing all the way back to Singapore.
For DirectAsia’s customers, our comprehensive car insurance provides coverage when you are driving in Singapore, West Malaysia (including Penang and the other Malaysian islands offshore of West Malaysia) and Southern Thailand (being that part of Thailand which is within 80 kilometres of the border between Southern Thailand and West Malaysia). We also cover you when your car is crossing the straits between Singapore and Tanjong Belungkor, Johor and when you cross the straits between West Malaysia and the Malaysian islands offshore of West Malaysia.
4. Travel Insurance
It is highly likely that most Singaporeans may not bother with taking a travel insurance for their trip to Malaysia, but if you find that these weekend trips happen frequently enough, why not take up an annual plan for the family for a peace of mind? That way, you’ll always have a safety net against unforeseen accidents, theft and health risks.
Take for instance the example of a road accident. While you might have your car insurance to cover the damages, one may have to seek out emergency treatment in the hospital in Malaysia instead of coming back to Singapore to seek treatment. With a travel insurance, it can at least cover the costs of medical evacuation or hospitalisation.
Our annual travel insurance to Malaysia for a family of 4 (2 adults and 2 children) costs less than $300!
Keeping your car safe while in Malaysia
It’s quite well-known that car and motorcycle thefts are pretty rampant in Malaysia. Stories of stolen cars and motorcycles are not unheard of, especially if there are prominent valuables displayed in your car. You should make an effort to remove any bags, laptops, and even your cash-card within your car.
Leaving your car unlocked even when you are stepping away for a short while is a big no-no. The basic rule is to always take extra precautions and safety measures. You might also want to consider securing your car further with anti-theft devices.
Once you take these safety precautions, you should be able to enjoy your weekend trips into Malaysia with a peaceful mind. Remember to check your car insurance coverage, as well as take up a relevant travel insurance plan to have you covered! Get a happier quote with DirectAsia now!