January 16, 2005 GMT
How to get your Bike into Singapore

1. Check into hotel in Johor Bahru (JB).

2. Take taxi to insurance office, which has moved.

3. Fill in even more interminable form than usual and give them money.

4. Be told that because of yesterday's blackout the computers have been down and there's a backlog of work and they can't issue the certificate until tomorrow morning.

5. Curse.

6. Claim that you will incur serious bodily harm from Singaporean motorcyclists if the paperwork isn't in order tomorrow morning.

7. Get vague promise of a certificate at 3pm this aftenoon.

8. Spend ages finding a taxi back to the hotel.

9. Watch the Dakar.

10. Ring insurance office and confirm certificate is available.

11. Get taxi to insurance office to get certificate, and ensure it (the taxi) waits (on a double yellow line).

12. Take said taxi to Singapore taxi stand.

13. Negotiate price to the Singapore AA office and return.

14. Go to Singapore AA.

15. Hand over:
Insurance policy and certificate
Carnet de Passage
UK Driving licence
International Driving Permit
V5
Passport
Completed interminable form
S$10.50
A promise (cross my heart and hope to die) that I'll go back with the Bill of Lading from the shipping company

16. Receive in exchange:
International Circulation Permit
Er . . . that's it

17. Resume taxi mack to Malaysia.

17. Walk to hotel from Singapore taxi stand.

18. Consume several large G+Ts.

19. Affix ICP to inside of screen. Crookedly. Next to Russian one.

Any questions?

PS And it *still* took two hours to get from Malaysia to Singapore, despite completely correct paperwork and a very helpful Customs official. But I had company as four members of the BMW Club of Singapore came across to escort me on to their premises, so to speak.

Posted by Cynthia Milton at January 16, 2005 08:20 PM GMT
 
 

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