Must-Know

Information about Malaysia

1. CountryMalaysia is a federation of 11 states and 3 federal territories. It is a constitutional monarchy with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as head of state. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong serves a five-year term.

2. CapitalKuala Lumpur

3.Gepgraphical LocationMalaysia is located in South East Asia and consists of the Malayan Peninsula and East Malaysia. The two are separated by the South China Sea. Sabah and Sarawak are located in East Malaysia while the other states are located in the Malayan Peninsula.

4. LanguagesThe official language for Malaysia is Bahasa Malaysia, but English and Chinese are widely spoken.

5. ReligionIslam is the official religion but other religions are freely practised.

6.Entry Requirement: All visitors must be in possession passports that are valid for at least six months beyond the intended visiting period. Visitors arriving from certain countries are required to hold yellow fever certificate. Visitors of certain nationalities are required to obtain visa in advance before entering.

Note: Visitors of the following nationalities are required to obtain visa in advance before entering

Bangladesh* Mozambique Eritrea Burundi Djoubti
Cameroon Afghanistan Ethiopia Central African Rep. Guinea-Bissau
Ghana Angola Myanmar* P.R. China* India*
Pakistan Bhutan Nepal* Columbia Isreal#
Nigeria Equatorial Guinea Burkina Faso Rep. of Congo Cote d’Ivoire
Liberia Niger Rwanda Sri Lanka* Montenegro

Nationals marked * can apply their visa online using the eVisa system
#: Israeli passport holders are required to obtain special permission from the Ministry of Home Affairs, Malaysia before applying for their visa
(The above information is for reference only, please refer to www.imi.gov.my for the latest information)

7.Currency Used: The official currency in Malaysia is Ringgit(RM). One Ringgit is divided into 100 Sens. Bureau de Change are plentiful in major cities and all accept major currencies such as US Dollar, Euro, Renminbi and others. Some outlets at international airports accept foreign currency as mode of payment.
new_malaysian_currency_design
Currency used in Malaysia (photo source: en.wikipedia.org)

8.Immigration Control: There will be immigration control for all passengers travelling in and out of the states of Sabah and Sarawak even for domestic flights from the Peninsula. Passport is required for travel and visit pass issued by West Malaysian authorities may not be valid in Sarawak. More information can be obtained from the official website for the Immigration Department of Malaysia- http://www.imi.gov.my.

9.Time: Malaysia is 8 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time and practices no daylight saving

10.Goods and Service Tax: Malaysia imposes a 6% Goods and Service Tax. Tourists who have met certain spending criteria may register for a tax refund. More information can be found on the website of the Royal Malaysian Customs Department: http://gst.customs.gov.my/en/cp/Pages/cp_trst.aspx.

11.When handing over money, gifts or other items, it is advisable to refrain from using the left hand as a mark of respect.