Brunei

BRUNEI 2009

The Brunei border crossing was easy, and all up took less then one hour. We had to fill out the usual government paperwork with chassis number, engine number etc., get the stamps and insurance and then we were on our way. Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital, is 140km north of the border. After 10km we came onto a toll road! Oops, we have No Brunei Money! We parked the car, walked up to the toll booth and explained that this pour tourist was unaware of toll roads in Brunei and was not able to find a bank at the border. (Only Money exchangers) The guy was very friendly and helpful and understood this poor tourist and let me off for 10 Ringgit. Today was a day of bureaucracy: Brunei-Sarawak-Brunei-Sarawak-Sabah – yes, no less than five border crossings in 170km. They really do love stamps. As we are novice`s in border crossings and signs are only in Arabic/Malay, we stopped, handed over the passports, carnet and hoped for the best. As we entered Brunei it appeared we had missed one stamp. To leave Brunei 55km later however was not possible, because we first needed the entry stamp – it could not be done! So, the border guard wanted us to cross the road where people were entering Brunei from Sabah, so we could go back to the first border post where we entered 60km ago to get the entry stamp! Anyway, the border post was very busy and after 20 minutes in line we figured out that as we had no entry stamp, why would we need an exit stamp?