A quick guide on social visit pass or extension of visit application for foreign spouses of Malaysians.
Hello avid readers, I’m back! It has been a over month since my husband and I registered our marriage in Malaysia. Since that memorable day, we wasted no time in moving on to the next step which is the application for social visit pass or extension of visit for foreign spouses. This is a pre-requisite in the application of a long-term social visit pass (LTSVP) a.k.a. ‘spouse visa’.
As explained on my previous blog, Settling Down In Malaysia – Part 1, “Malaysia is known to have stricter polices and more challenging processes regarding visa and permanent residency (PR) applications for foreign spouses”. Foreign spouses are treated as ‘outsiders’ or ‘visitors’ for a longer period of time (5 years minimum), with restrictions in any form of employment. Although an Asian country, migration of a foreign spouse to Malaysia is definitely not a walk in the park. Hence, it is important to conduct prior research and save a lot of money before making the big move.
Our objective on August 29th was to finish the application on the LTSVP within one day. Unfortunately, even months of research did not prepare us on the answer of the immigration officer which was:
“You can only apply for the spouse visa 6 months after your registration date. In the mean time, you have to apply for an extension of visit which allows your spouse to stay in MY for another 3 months. After that, you have to re-apply for another extension of visit. Only then can your wife be qualified to apply for the spouse visa.”
This information is consistent among immigration officers in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor (we visited 2 offices instead of 1 due to negligence on research regarding the correct location). And so this blog took a slight detour from a LTSVP application write-up to an ‘extension of visit’ article. Nonetheless, our trip to immigration was still considered a ‘win’ for us.
Note: Keep in mind that immigration policies change from time to time, and perhaps is dependent on the foreign spouse’s country of origin. Some couples were able to apply for LTSVP right after the registration of their marriage. Our experience may be applicable to some but not all.
Without much ado, here are the steps on how to apply for a social visit pass or extension of visit for foreign spouses of Malaysians:
Step 1 – Complete the checklist prior to visiting Jabatan Imigresen Malaysia
To ensure that the trip to the immigration is maximized, bring the following:
- Original and photocopy of foreign spouse’s passport – Bio and pages that contain stamps from MY immigration
- Original and photocopy of Malaysian spouse’s MyKad (IC) – front and back
- Original and photocopy of marriage registration
- Passport-size photo for both
- Cash amounting to MYR 700.00 at least (for Filipinos)
Step 2 – Visit Jabatan Imigresen Malaysia
Make sure to visit the branch reflecting the state of your Malaysian spouse based on his/her MyKad (IC). In our case, we visited the Immigration Office near Publika / Solaris Dutamas first, which was apparently the wrong branch. The immigration officer (IO) advised us to visit the office at Kompleks PKNS Shah Alam, 02-02, Persiaran Tasik, 40000 Shah Alam instead, since my Malaysian spouse resides in the state of Selangor.
Tip: Parking is available at RM 3.00 flat rate.
Proceed to Counter 13 and fill out the forms Imm. 55, IM 12 and IM 34
Step 3- Proceed to counter 14, submit the filled-out forms and make a payment
Here’s the breakdown of payment amounting to RM 686.00 or PHP 7,923.30 using the conversion rate RM 1.00 = PHP 11.55.
Note: Fees are dependent on the country of origin of the foreign spouse. Amounts quoted below are for Filipinos.
Once you’ve made a payment, the IO will hand you the document below. We were able to complete step 4 at around 12 noon and were advised to come back at 2:30 p.m. to collect my passport with the Single Entry Visa and Social Visit Pass.
Kompleks PKNS houses a lot of shops, boutiques and restaurants apart from the immigration office. You may kill some time by visiting the shops within the building.
Tip: The Single Entry Visa (SEV) may be obtained at the Malaysian Embassy of the foreign spouse’s country of origin. If the foreign spouse is currently in his/her motherland, it’s best and more cheaper to apply for the SEV at the MY embassy. If you’re a Filipino, you may visit Embassy Guide Philippines, Pinoy Boleh, or Filipino Community In Malaysia – How To Apply For A Visa for more details
Here’s a useful excerpt on SOCIAL VISA APPLICATION from Embassy Guide Philippines:
- Citizen of the Republic of the Philippines have to obtain a visa for purpose of social visits exceeding thirty (30) days.
- If the entered duration of stay in Malaysia is 31-90 (ninety) days, social visa without reference should be secured. Below are the requirements for social visa without reference
- Invitation letter from the sponsor in Malaysia
- Confirmed roundtrip ticket
- Passport with at least 6 months validity on date of first entry
- Two (2) recent passport sized photos
- Visa application form (typewritten) and Visa fee
Step 4 – Return to counter 14 to collect your passport
After a couple of hours, we returned to counter 14 and collected my passport which now contained my Single Entry Visa and Social Visit Pass as shown below:
Prior to the expiration of my social visit pass, my husband and I need to perform the same process to get another 3 months extension. Only then, can we apply for the Long-term Social Visit Pass, otherwise known as the spouse visa. Yes, that’s 6 more months of meaningful break from the hustle and bustle of ’employee life’ and a break from earning financially too. On the brighter side, I no longer need to exit the country every 3o days.
If you and your spouse are planning to settle in Malaysia, make sure you’ve done enough research and financial preparation. Six months under a single-income household in these times can be tough. It took a year and half of planning and preparation for us before we decided to take the leap and go through the hurdles of migration. Patience is key, so is diligence and teamwork. Remember to celebrate every success along the way, big or small. Make the most out of the journey and strengthen your bond every step of the way!
Hope this blog helped you. If you think someone can benefit from this article, please feel free to share! Sharing is caring!
You might find my other blogs useful:
- How To Get Married In Malaysia Under 900 Ringgit
- Settling Down In Malaysia Part 1 – A step-by-step guide for Filipinos and their respective Malaysian partners on how to legally register their marriage in Malaysia