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#TravelTips : What To Do If You Lose Your Passport/Travel Documents Abroad?

Passport and visa are the most important items and these documents should be kept safe at all cost - especially when you are travelling abroad.

Losing either one surely will ruin your travel plan or worse case, it got stolen and your identity might be used for criminal activities and you will end up in the local jail which we all know it won’t be good.

Although it is possible to get a replacement after you've back from your journey, but as far as we know, you will get penalized and the fine are up to RM1,200. Under a new decree under the Fees (Passports and Visas) (Amendment) Order 2019 of the Federal Government Gazette.

Here’s the breakdown of the fines:

Children aged 12 and below; students aged 21 and below studying abroad: MYR300 (first time), MYR600 (second time), MYR1,100 (third time).

Age 21 and above: MYR400 (first time), MYR700 (second time), MYR1,200 (third time).

If you sign up any travel insurance, here's when travel insurance comes in handy. Not only will the agents help you through the process of getting a replacement passport, they will also cover the damage.

Anyhow, if you happen to be in such an unfortunate incident, keep calm and follow these steps:

1. Retrace Your Steps

In most case; it so happen to be a false-alarm, whereby actually all the necessary documents are still in your possession - you just misplace it. Try to search your luggage or backpack compartments, pockets of your clothes, pants or jacket.

Search thoroughly! Don't just do a simple scan with your hand thingy. Do it as the airport security would do while searching your bag. Take your item one-by-one and put it aside as you finish.

Then, search every inch of the hotel room. Remember to stay calm during the search because you will definitely miss things when rushing. If you are certain you travelled around with the passport, go back to the places you have visited and ask the reception or any person in charge if they found anything. If no, then search the place.

Travel Tips 1: Put all important document in one place or a specific compartment for travel documents only. Don't mix it up with anything else.

2. Lodge a Police Report

If you’re certain your passport is nowhere to be found, go to the nearest police station to lodge a report as soon as you can.

Make sure to report within 24 hours or else insurance companies may not cover the costs of replacing the passport. A police report will serve as proof in case your identity is stolen for criminal activities after you’ve lost the documents.

Make multiple copies of the report, if possible, keep a soft copy too!

3. Contact Your Insurance Agent

Most insurance company emergency hotlines operate 24/7, so you should not have trouble contacting them. From there, they will guide you on how to proceed.

Depending on what insurance coverage and the premium you paid, the coverage might be different from one another. Double check on your insurance policy for their coverage and whatnot. For example; they won’t only cover the expenses for passport/travel documents replacement, but also costs of travels at the place of loss (going to embassy, police station etc.)

Anyhow, keep all receipts if you want to make any claim afterwards.

4. Lodge a Report at the Malaysian Embassy

Go to the Malaysian Embassy or any mission like High Commission, Consulate General or Consulate offices at your destination. If your destination (country) does not have a Malaysian mission, contact one that is the closest to the destination (neighbouring country).

They’ll be able to guide you through the process. Some embassies require appointment, so do a quick search and book an appointment to avoid disappointments. For a list of Malaysian embassies abroad, click here.

Generally, here are the documents needed to apply for an emergency certificate :

  • Copy of police report

  • Completed passport application/travel documents Form IM.42

  • Other documents that can be used as proof of citizenship like IC or driving licence

  • Two passport photos

  • Processing fees — subject to change according to exchange rate given by Malaysian Accountant General’s Department.

For children below 12 years old, please provide:

  • Copy of MyKid or Borang W for child born abroad

  • Copy of the parent or guardian’s IC

  • Children under three years old is exempted from providing a thumbprint

P/s: Different countries may require other documents - double check with the embassy on the documents they need.

Do note that these countries that does NOT recognize our Emergency Travel Document:

Brunei, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Holland, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Jordan, Kuwait, Norway, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Senegal, Sudan, Switzerland, Turkey, U.A.E

Processing fee to apply for Emergency Travel Document:

U.S $20.00 for all applicants

5. Apply for Replacement Passport Once Back in Malaysia

Visit any Malaysian Immigration Department office usually at UTC (Urban Transformation Centre) complexes to apply for a replacement. After settling the fine mentioned above, you should get a brand-new passport.

Here are a few ways to minimize the risk of losing your passport or travel documents:

  • Keep your passport in a hotel safe

  • Take note of the location of Malaysian embassy at your destination

  • Carry several physical (photocopy) and digital (save picture on phone Dropbox or Google Drive) copies of your passport

  • Never leave your passport in an unattended luggage

  • Keep all important documents in one place (ziplock file)


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