Renewing Your Malaysian Passport in London

By Elie - 10:35 PM

Is swinging by on the last day of the month my new muse to the blog space? Honestly, not quite. I've been meaning to write this down before I forget most of the details but February has been such a turbulent month - with more rocky roads ahead - that I nearly missed my promise to pen something at least once every month.

But fret not, for I'm here now! 

It's been a while since I've written something more business-like and informative, but I figured this would be useful information for Malaysians living abroad and may need to get their passport renewed at the High Commission of Malaysia in London. In fact the last time I've done this was when I documented how we got married at JPN in 2017. So let's get to it. Tl;dr? Check the end of this post!

Hello there, Jalur Gemilang!

A full disclaimer first that all details are accurate as of 8th of February 2023. Steps may vary if you're visiting your local Malaysian embassy, but here's what happens if you drop by the High Commission of Malaysia at 45, Belgrave Square, London, United Kingdom. 

So for the uninitiated, you should know that most passports even when renewed at your local embassies get sent to the High Commission in London. This is why it takes your local Malaysian embassies some time to give you your passport back - there's logistics to be done and from what I presume is a wait time as they'd probably wait till they have a certain number of passports to renew before sending it over. If you're like me, however, and have booked a holiday without checking the expiry of your passport, then you're always welcome to pop into the High Commission. 

Literally unmissable!

Upon finding the building of the Malaysian High Commission, you'll want to sashay to the sides instead of the main doors. A signage will lead you to the gates where you have to take the stairs down. It's all a little dodgy and please don't ask me why - it just somehow works that way. Some doors await you as soon as you reach the end of the unfortunately uneven stairs, something I really hope they'll be fixing soon. 

Look for this sign to lead the way

Once you're in there, you'll be greeted by a number dispensing machine in which you'll have to press the corresponding button of what your business at the High Commission of Malaysia is for. The system works exactly as you'd expect from the ones you see back in Malaysia, so if you're already familiar with our banks and post offices, you'd know exactly what I'm talking about. 

The passport renewal counters open at 9AM, with the last application for the day closing at 12PM. 

Despite our best efforts, my other half who joined me on the trip and I arrived at the High Commission of Malaysia around 9:30 AM that morning. My number had already gone up to 3017, though I literally didn't see as many people waiting. The mystery later resolved itself when another visitor came by with extra numbers to give out - he had taken extras while waiting for his son who took a while to arrive. I was then bumped to 3014. 

Again, if you're familiar to the number system in Malaysia then you can expect the very same robotic announcement but in English this time. So yes, it will go THREE-ZERO-ONE-FOUR-COUNTER-THREE. Tell me you didn't hear that in your head. But also, don't throw your number paper just yet!

I even practiced what my picture could possibly look like!

It's good to note that the process is fairly simple from hereon and you could be done at the counter in as little as 10 minutes if you have all your documents in place. For Malaysians like us who are living abroad, the documents you'll need to renew your passport at the High Commission of London are your old passport, your original Malaysian IC and a copy of it, your residence permit of wherever you currently reside (in my current case it's the Netherlands) and a copy of it, as well as £41 in cash. The last part should be the most important as they don't take cards at the High Commission and there isn't an ATM anywhere at sight. 

You don't have to bring any photos because they'll take one on the spot. Do be aware though that you must be dressed in a dark coloured shirt and it's okay even if it's not collared. It has to have sleeves though and if you're not in any of the aforementioned attire, you'd be forced to put on the oversized blazer they have prepared for you. I recommend a fully black shirt as my best friend who went a day later wasn't allowed to take a picture in his grey-ish black tee, but my black Uniqlo top worked fine.

And that's another 5 years in the books!

Upon completing all of the steps above, you'll be asked to return to the High Commission between 3PM - 4PM for the pick-up session. That's right, you can get your passport renewed on the same day when you're in London as opposed to the few weeks of wait time - or in my case in the Netherlands, it would have been an 8-week wait! 

To pick it up, you'll just have to go back to the same counters and tell the officer what your queue number was. Remember the THREE-ZERO-THREE-FOUR I had earlier? Well that told the officer who I was and I was handed my passport immediately. You'd be asked to verify the details of your passport, and the officers would also cut a part of your old passport in front of you before you can take it home with you. I'm really glad I got it back though, because this passport held lots of memories for me with trips to Japan, Singapore, and the migration to the Netherlands being a part of them.

So easy, my best friend got his passport done the next day too!

Because I had already popped into London, my best friend and I took the opportunity for our annual meet up. With my new-found learning just the day before, he got his passport renewed in no time as well. 

And as promised, here's a simplified guide on how to renew your Malaysian passport at the High Commission of Malaysia in London, United Kingdom: 
  1. Prepare your documents ahead!
    • Your old passport 
    • Your original Malaysian IC + one photocopy 
    • Your residence permit of where you currently reside + one photocopy
    • £41 in cash (Remember, no cards are taken and there's no ATM available!)
  2. Head to the High Commission between 9AM to 12PM.
  3. Take your number and wait to be called, be sure not to throw the paper away or take a picture of it so you remember the number - this is important for your pick-up later!
  4. Have your picture taken at the counter. Be sure to wear a darker coloured shirt for this or you'll have to wear their oversized and probably unwashed blazer. 
  5. Pay for your passport and wait to pick-up your passport at 3PM the same day. You can identify yourself by telling the officer your wait number from earlier in the day. 
Treat yourself to a typical English breakfast!

And as a special tip: There's a lovely cafe run by lovely group of Italian / British folks just behind the High Commission of Malaysia where you can get a typical English breakfast for cheap. The fry-up of bacon, eggs, and beans only costed us £7.50 each with coffee and toast included. I hope this post would have helped you if you're off to renew your passport and good luck, fellow Malaysian!

  • Share:

You Might Also Like


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.