"Wonders of the Human Mind. Unfathomable to the highest degree."
"The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense"
Teaches you how to analyze a volatile situation and in seconds, turn a potential disaster around to your favor, using only words. But it goes back to what you said "just a little thought and manners should get us out of many problems."
the purpose of this thread to tell others to be prepared for a bad experience in immigration at melbourne. now if u kenna, expected. good news - if u dun kenna, ok heng and move on with your life. dun kenna and be caught off guard as i was and these things do happen!
i am not into bashing Australia. Australia is a great country. People/Citizens are nice. been there 5-7 times since 1999. sometimes twice a year. I have frens there. I felt the immigration was racist because i cannot but help notice that the only guys kenna interrogated were Asians even in the few times that i was there. Out of the few times i have been there, the recent one in 2005 was the worst. One other incident where I had a pasar malam thing but it was only for 15 mins and that was acceptable. only a few questions how much u have, where u going and where u stay?
the last one was bad - really seriously bad. Seriously, we were tourists and we were going to Australia to have a good time. Going there to spend $$$ to help economy but with such a "warm" reception, make me regret going to Australia.
FYI, I have been to China, Europe, USA, Japan, Korea, New Zealand and a dozen of Countries in the World. Australia ranks the worst immigration reception on this list. Why? because of the bad experience.
Yes I agree to all that we must check for Terrorism, illegal workers and other stuff.
But where do u draw the line?
If u read my thread, an immigration officer reading my wife's diary and questioning my wife on details of her life which are irrevelant. EVen i don't read my wife's diary.
and even worst, when i protested , i was shouted at in front of all other people "SIT DOWN". i was commanded to sit down.
c'mon, i could prove that i was a tourist with necessary funds to support my stay. what is embarressing is that i had to wake a bunch of my frens at 4 am in the morning in australia to prove that I was not going to be an illegal worker.
there are other details that i neglected to put in the previous thread. u know how come i got to leave? because the supervisor , who is an ASIAN, came in and after calling my doc fren, allowed me to leave. The ang moh immigration officer protested and wanted to continue interrogating me. Obviously, he really enjoyed it.
turn around u guys go to a foreign country to have a good time only to get this......
do singaporean immigration treat our tourists that way?
its not bashing australia, its just my experience. For many i hope u guys have a good experience going to ozzie land. maybe i just suay but its an experience that i will remember for the rest of my life.
Even my immigration experience in communist china was better....
PS: i shudder to think if i did not have my doc fren to bail me out. I may have to go home or kenna another 2 hours pasar malam.
When we went to the airport to leave, the security inspectors seized my HIE (all carefully labeled and packed by Kodak) and proceeded to open each and every roll. HIE is sensative to light and the canisters must be opened only in a darkroom. 40 rolls of very expensive film were ruined by those b*stards. They knew exactly what they were doing because they didn't touch the slide film. I took the opened now worthless HIE and tossed it in the trash.
They told me that I was lucky.......security was much tougher in Greece.
That little display of Singaporean hospitality cost me about $500US.
I travel to Singapore 7-8 times a year and I've never had another problem but then I don't rant on about "chinks" or "gooks". Perhaps Samuel you should change your attitude. Just a thought.
Last edited by CantikFotos; 30th November 2006 at 01:15 PM.
Just to share my experiences when I was in Melbourne from 1996 to 2001 for studies
On my first night in Melbourne, a car pulled up next to us at the traffic line and a bunch of Aussies shouted this to me and my friend "come suck my d*** you f***** Chink, f*** back to where you came from"
In uni, all the aussies would group together and when you ask if you can join their groups, they say no. End if the day... groups became polarized... Aussies one side, Asians one side.
While walking in Lygon known as little Italy, we had aussies shout at me and my Aussie friend "You f****** loser, hanging out with a chink!"
ON THE OTHER HAND,
when the ice had broken between the class, Aussies and Asians went out for drinks
My head of department heard about us being picked on because we were asians and apologized to us in person.
While that guy was shouting loser at us, I and my Aussie friend were off to a good time with the rest of the boys.
We told the aussies how to play mahjong, they introduced us to the magic of asparagus and butter...
We invited them to eat chinese food, they treated us to fireworks.
In the end.... one cannot deny everywhere there is racism but it is whether one gets to meet the right people or not.
Really, Singapore is getting more and more appealing.
The only place police will call me "Sir", makes me wanna coorporate.
If you are sure that you bear no racist feelings, throw the first stone!
I urge you to think carefully before picking up the stone.
Realistically speaking, racism exists everywhere and in every person. It's only a matter of how well covered up it is. Please, don't tell me Singapore has no racism! Anybody saying Singapore is completely race-neutral is severely retarded. To even object your child from marrying a lover of another race is racist. Now imagine your own daughter or girlfriend eloping off with a man of another race.
Now, I wanna watch who throws the first stone.
However, I won't defend Melbourne or Australia. I can openly tell you that racist elements and sentiments do exist but really, in all the years of my observation, I think Melbourne does better than Singapore. Here's why.
(1) Melbourne (not Australia) is home to people who come migrated from about 150 different countries. Compare that number with Singapore.
(2) About 70 different languages are spoken in Melbourne. Compare that number with Singapore.
(3) Government/community/social information and services are available in about 12 different languages. Of this dozen, Cantonese and Mandarin are included. Also included are Vietnamese, Bahasa Indonesia, and Thai. Compare that diversity with Singapore's 4 "major" races.
(4) A very high Asian population lives in Melbourne city. It's so high (I forgot the percentage) that the entire city could almost look like Chinatown. (If you have travelled to Melbourne, you know I'm not lying.)
(5) Early this year, Asian (Chinese) cuisine has taken over first place for number of eateries in the city. Also in the same report, more and more Caucasians are consuming Asian cuisine for its perceived health benefits.
(6) The Lord Mayor of Melbourne, John So, is a Chinese man. He was popularly elected by Melbourne residents twice, and if not mistaken, he's into his third term of office now.
So why the unfriendly/hostile customs officer?
As I have already said in my earlier post, and also echoed by another ClubSnap member, Australia is a desirable country to live in. (Ehh... factually, Singapore isn't as desirable no matter what you have been told by higher authority.) Statistically, numbers don't lie. The number of illegal immigrants and refugees risking life and limb to land on Aussie shores isn't as small as the nose-diggings you flick off your last finger. Australia has detention centres housing hundreds or thousands who have illegally landed.
Customs officers are probably not used to seeing long holiday VISAs without proof of money to sustain your holiday or a definite address. If you are pissed off at the officers trying to find out if you have intention to overstay and illegally migrate, then you could similarly be pissed off at the tail-wagging beagle who sniffs your luggage for drugs. Why not kick them both?
Also, although I'm not implying that all Asians are perpetually rude, but our tone of voice of opening sentence when starting a conversation may be misinterpreted as unhappy and rude. I have personally seen this many times when Asians open their gaps towards Caucasian Aussies. It's as if the offensive Asian has a permanently lodged cactus in their black-wind-holes. (I swear! I'm disgusted and ashamed when I witness this. The offending Asian is surely a social misfit in Aussie society for being so cold and rude when opening his/her gap, and sometimes I see the Aussie's facial expression change.)
Really, I would say that before we call others rude or racist, take a good hard look at ourselves in the mirror first.
I know that I am just one mere person here in Australia and not an important one at that;
But I apologise for what you and your wife went through.
I am truely sorry to know how you were treated.
I have nothing to do with imigration or any such matters, but again I apologise to your wife and yourself.
Time, is an effortless construction :)
I think some people are missing the point here.
The crux of this "Warning Immigration screening" is more about how tourist/visitor were treated at the immigration, although there is or may have an element of racism involved.
I am sure racism is everywhere, in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, China, India, America, Europe, Australia and the list goes on.
BUT the point is, as an immigration official, more so in a developed country in year 2006 coming to 2007, you should be well trained or taught to handle people/tourist/visitor in a firm but friendly and humane way.
In year 1993 (13 long years ago, services/attitude probably suck everywhere, especially compared to now), am not surprised how you were treated although I would be extremely pissed. In the year 1993, am sure many people have similar or more horror experiences to tell in Singapore/WWWorld's immigration.
But, this thread dated year 2006 about immigration is appalling to say the least.
Am curious to know how long was your stop-over in Singapore. 1 day? few hours? If someone were to stop over a country for few hours just to buy films, loads of film, the custom officers (be it in Singapore, China, Australia) would be curious.
As your films were specialized films (canister to be opened only in a dark room), and knowing the limitation of custom officers knowledge about such specialized film, I believe your films will still suffer the same fate at the hand of any custom officer (be it in Singapore, China, Australia).
Did you keep/show the original receipt of your film purchase to the officers? If I were you, I would retain the original receipt and even the ruined films (with all cansiter/packaging) as evidence later for compensation claim from the airport. I would remember the officers names, date/time of incident to lodge a formal complaint, even the chance of getting back something fruitful was slim.
And a note. Up until the mid 1990s, most good hotels in Singapore would refuse to accept Taiwanese guests. This is just one reason alot of Taiwanese still hold a grudge against Singaporeans. Silly, but there it is.
Last edited by CantikFotos; 30th November 2006 at 01:16 PM.
Having lived in Australia on and off since 1984...i have seem my fair share of racism......but still you will also find a fair amount of very friendly people in Australia. Compared to 1984, i think the racism remarks you hear in the streets have really declined.........although i have not experienced any "special" treatment at the immigrations, i have witness people picked out for examination and questioning......and these include chinese and westerners....chinese old ladies are a favourite....cause they always bring prohibited food item........
i guess you just have to play smart and don't give them an excuse to pick on you. Also i have learned to just ignore the racist remarks.........
Every country have their pros and cons......immigration is definitely a big problem for Oz and also largely depend on the ruling political party's policies......(certain parties are more hostile )
But once you pass the immigrations, you will enjoy Australia.
I agree. Have a ready smile and be prepared to offer information when they request it. The "why are you wasting my time" look definitely doesn't work most times
Really? What is the reason why taiwanese dont like Singaporeans in the 90s? I always thought we had good relations considering we have our forces training there.