How to get money with no proof of identity in Borneo

Kuching Travel Blog

 › entry 4 of 7 › view all entries

I must have dozed off for a bit as this morning I was woken by a  phone call from Tina at the Australian Embassy in Kuala Lumpar. Was VERY glad to speak to someone who could tell me what to do next.... this is what I had to do

1)Go to the Kuching Immigration office and pay 100 Ringett for a special pass that would allow me to fly to K.L.

2)Transfer my Malaysian Airlines flight from Kuching - Singapore to Kuching -K.L. (cost extra)

3) Get to the Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpar as soon as possible to complete forms so an emergency Passport could be issued in time for me to catch my original Singapore - Brisbane, Australia Etihad  11p.m.flight on  9th Nov.

4) Buy a new air ticket from K.L. to Singapore

5) Work out how to get some money!!!!

6) book accomodation in K.L. ( Hilton did this for me at The Rennaisance Hotel as advised by Tina as it is within walking distance of the Embassy...again no charge for this service)

Mr Chew came to the hotel to check on me and had the name of a guy in Immigration that was expecting me and would expediate my special pass process. I was impressed that he actually came to meet me. He was a very nice man.  The staff continued to be very helpful and even sent one of the staff members to Malaysian Airlines office to begin organising flights for me. This enabled me to go straight to the Immigration Office.

 Before doing any of the above I had to get some money as I had only 28MR to my name ( about $7.50 AUD). We had discussed possibilities last night and thought a money wire to Western Union would work but without proof of identity Western Union won' t allow pick up of wired money.!?!

Rang my sister in Aus (another free charge call!) and she thought of sending her credit card details to the Hilton and them advancing cash to me...Now as far as I know not many places would go with something like this but the Hilton immediately said yes and got her card details there and then over the phone and 10 minutes later I had cash!!!

The day ( and my mood) improved greatly after this. It only took 2 hours to get my special pass and by the time I returned to the hotel they had found out all the details of flights and costs so the staff guy then walked me over to Malaysian Airlines office and helped me get that fast tracked...I now had money, pass and ticket to K.L. departing Kuching at 5.30 a.m. tomorrow 7th Nov.

I think being able to fly without a passport was made so much easier as Sarawak is a state of Malaysia so I would only be flying nationally...not internationally. Hate to think what people do in other scenarios!

By now it is about 2p.m. and I have the rest of the day...hmm...what does anybody do when in extreme circumstances?????....GO SHOPPING! I was still feeling quite under the weather and did not feel like "sightseeing" but thought a browse along Bazaar Street about 5 minutes walk away may be just what I needed...

Managed to have a quick look around the Chinese museum on the way (It is so small, only one room housed in a lovely old building, some nice exhibits, that you can do it in 10 minutes) and an hour or so  later I had bought a few sauvoniers and was exhausted . Managed to relaxa bit back  in my room , had a quiet dinner, packed,  and tried for an early night.

Llerd says:
That's quite story to remember. I wouldn't want to be in your shoes that day. Get well soon!
Posted on: Nov 23, 2007
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photo by: aotw