Crime in JB: Singapore family kidnapped in JB

The case of the Malaysian family who were kidnapped two days ago in JB must have horrified Singaporeans.

It both saddens and infuriates me whenever I read about Singaporeans who get into trouble in Malaysia.

It infuriates me when commonsense is lacking, for instance, driving through the JB checkpoint without having your passport stamped because there was no officer around was one excuse given.

Having driven throughout Malaysia since the 70s, I share some tips on safe travel in Malaysia. No one wants to end up assaulted, robbed, injured, kidnapped or murdered while holidaying in Malaysia.

Here are some golden rules to ensure a safe and pleasant trip in Malaysia:

1. Respect all traffic rules. Malaysians may park anywhere they like but you do that and the traffic cops may see it as a “business” opportunity.

2. Be courteous and respectful towards Malaysian drivers as you are in their territory. You may jump the queue in car parks in SIngapore but do that in Malaysia and you may find art work on your smashed windscreen.

3. Avoid shopping malls’ car parks if possible. Deserted car parks have too many nooks and corners where danger lurks.

4. Malaysians park where they can keep an eye on their vehicles. Do the same.

5. Don’t park or have family wait in the car in a poorly lit or deserted area at night.

6. Don’t flaunt your jewelry or expensive handbags. Always sling your handbag over your shoulder to thwart bag snatchers. Dress down so as not to attract attention. Don’t advertise the fact that you’re a walking ATM.

7. Don’t make eye contact with strangers and walk away quickly if they attempt to strike up a conversation.

8. If nature calls on the highway, head for toilets at rest stops where there are food stalls. Even shopping mall toilets can be dangerous particularly when they are not that busy.

9. Try not to be on the road in the wee hours of the morning.

10. An expensive car is a magnet for criminals so avoid driving one in Malaysia.

11. Leave your ATM cards at home.

12. Carry a spare wallet and fill it with enough ringgit that you can afford to lose.

13. Getting back into your car is a vulnerable moment so scan the surroundings for danger. The moment you are in the car, lock it at once.

14. At petrol stations, don’t leave family in the car. Lock your car and take out your wallet only when you are inside the petrol station. There have been cases of bag snatchers at petrol stations.

Crime is largely one of giving criminal elements the opportunity.

You might think I’m paranoid. Honestly, I don’t look over my shoulders all the time. But it’s better to be safe than sorry is my motto.

Unless you don’t mind ending up with your precious car stolen or, worse, returning home in a coffin.

There’s no science to it but it’s mostly common sense really.

(Criminal elements often change their scripts so if you have had any ugly encounters recently please share them with us. Thank you.)


2 Responses to “Crime in JB: Singapore family kidnapped in JB”

  1. Dun even go is the best advice. Indonesia is a better place.

  2. Another smash and grab involving SG car.

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