I went to the ICA (Immigration and Checkpoints Authority) of Singapore to collect my new passport today and, not surprisingly, it was a pleasant experience.
Singapore’s efficiency in using technology to simplify service is legendary. That is on display at the ICA as well, a testament to how serious Singapore is with its smart nation initiatives and making public service smooth..
I had applied for a new passport as my existing one was due to expire in about six months. After I received a letter that it is ready for collection, I went online this Monday and picked a slot today.
Just 15 minutes: On reaching the building 15 minutes ahead of my appointment, I had my IC scanned in a self-service machine. Instantly, I received a queue number with all the relevant details.
Fifteen minutes later I was out of the premises with my new passport though hundreds of people were there. Queues move fast as people follow the process in letter and spirit. A few counters were unmanned but the high service standards meant the waiting time is kept short.
This being the Golden Jubilee year of Singapore, I was hoping to see an SG50 logo in the passport. That was not to be, so to that extent it was a minor disappointment.
G Joslin Vethakumar