The Straits Times
Published on Feb 12, 2013

Retired to Malaysia but not allowed to drive to Singapore


MY WIFE and I recently retired to Malaysia due to the property rules as well as the high cost of living in Singapore.

We come back to Singapore to visit relatives and friends, and attend medical appointments every two to three months.

However, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) has informed me that as I am not an employee in Malaysia, my wife and I - a Singaporean and Singapore permanent resident - are not allowed to drive our Malaysia-registered car into Singapore.

I understand that this ruling is to close the loophole in the control of the vehicle population in Singapore, but I hope the LTA can allow me to drive our Malaysia-registered car in based on the following:

- My wife and I need a car to run errands in Malaysia as public transport there is not yet well developed, except in the city centre.

- It would be very expensive for us to maintain a Singapore-registered car to drive in Malaysia.

- Should there be an accident while driving a Singapore-registered car in Malaysia, it would be tedious to tow the car back and make a claim in Singapore. My insurance agent is also unsure of how to handle such a claim.

- Taking the bus would be too inconvenient, and flying too expensive for us as we return to Singapore regularly.

- We do not stay in Singapore for many days each time.

My use of a Malaysia-registered car in Singapore would not be more than that of visiting Malaysians and Singaporeans working and residing in Malaysia.

I hope the LTA can review my case. Though retirees are no longer working, we have contributed towards the Singapore economy and continue to do so in the form of property and income taxes. We do not deserve to be disadvantaged this way.

Colin Loh