I really don’t bother much with ID cards. In fact, I don’t have one. The only time I ever had a government issued one was when I lived in Japan – but then I never carried it anyway.
However, on occasions it is useful to carry something of the sort in Malaysia.
When doing anything remotely complicated when banking they often want to see your passport. Similarly with mobile phone companies.
When picking up parcels at a post office, when you want an age or resident discount at attractions, the cinema (they usually don’t ask for proof at cinemas), restaurants (ditto) or zoos, an ID makes it easier. Because Malaysians don’t really understand the concept of not having a government issued ID.
So, if you know they will want to see some kind of ID, and you wisely do not want to always carry your passport, here is an idea for you.
You can do this yourself, or take your passport to a photography shop, such as HK Photo in Midlands, Pulau Tikus, where they will charge a very reasonable RM10, and have it ready in about 20 minutes.
Scan the ID page of your passport, and the MM2H visa page of your passport. On a computer, reduce the size respectively of each page to about the size of a credit card. Print them, put them back to back and laminate them. The passport on one side, the visa on the reverse side.
I have done it myself, but the quality of the job done by the photography shop is far superior.
You can, of course, have it notarised (before you laminate it) if you wish – this would really make it official and legal – but no one cares. If they can see something that resembles an ID card they are used to, they are happy. If you want a notary office, however, they can be found near the banking area in Beach Street, George Town.
This card fits easily in your wallet, but if you are unlucky enough to be pickpocketed, then at least you can easily remake this card.
I cannot claim this to be my original idea, as a friend put me on to it, but it works well. Just one discount at an attraction and it more than pays for itself. For example, it saved RM45 each at an attraction in Sabah. Of course, we could have carried our passports instead, but it is a lot less secure, and much harder to replace them.