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Malaysia Travel Restrictions

Traveler's COVID-19 vaccination status

Traveling from the United States to Malaysia

Open for vaccinated visitors

COVID-19 testing

Not required

Not required for vaccinated visitors


Recommended on public transportation.

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Can I travel to Malaysia from the United States?

Most visitors from the United States, regardless of vaccination status, can enter Malaysia.

Can I travel to Malaysia if I am vaccinated?

Fully vaccinated visitors from the United States can enter Malaysia without restrictions.

Can I travel to Malaysia without being vaccinated?

Unvaccinated visitors from the United States can enter Malaysia without restrictions.

Do I need a COVID test to enter Malaysia?

Visitors from the United States are not required to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test or antigen result upon entering Malaysia.

Can I travel to Malaysia without quarantine?

Travelers from the United States are not required to quarantine.

Do I need to wear a mask in Malaysia?

Mask usage in Malaysia is recommended on public transportation.

Are the restaurants and bars open in Malaysia?

Restaurants in Malaysia are open. Bars in Malaysia are .

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Key Information for Travelers to Malaysia.

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Saturday, 02 December 2023

Foreign visitors requirement: malaysia digital arrival card (mdac).

All foreign travellers must complete the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC) within three (3) days prior to their scheduled arrival in Malaysia. 

Steps required: 

  • Step 1 : Fill up the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC)  here  
  • Step 2 : Submit the MDAC within three (3) days prior to your arrival to Malaysia. Proof of submission will be sent to your registered email. 
  • Step 3:  Upon arrival in Malaysia, kindly proceed to the Immigration counters. 

The following travellers are exempted from this new requirement: 

  • Singaporeans  
  • Diplomatic and Official Passports holders 
  • Malaysian permanent residents (PR) and Long-Term Pass holders 
  • Brunei Common Certificate of Identification (GCI) holders 
  • Brunei-Malaysia Frequent Traveller Facility holders  
  • Thailand Border Pass holders 
  • Indonesian Cross Border Pass (PLB) holders 

For more information, kindly refer to the immigration website at  https://www.imi.gov.my/

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Malaysia lifts travel restrictions for fully vaccinated people

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Langkawi reopens to domestic tourists amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Malaysia

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Travel Advisory July 24, 2023

Malaysia - level 1: exercise normal precautions.

Reissued with obsolete COVID-19 page links removed.

Exercise normal precautions in Malaysia. Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory. 

Exercise Increased Caution in:

  • The eastern area of Sabah State due to kidnapping .

Read the  country information page  for additional information on travel to Malaysia.

If you decide to travel to Malaysia:

  • Enroll in the  Smart Traveler Enrollment Program  ( STEP ) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on  Facebook  and  Twitter .
  • Review the  Country Security Report  for Malaysia.
  • Visit the CDC page for the latest  Travel Health Information  related to your travel.  
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the  Traveler’s Checklist . 

Eastern Area of Sabah State – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

There is a threat of kidnappings-for-ransom from both terrorist and criminal groups. These groups may attack with little to no warning, targeting coastal resorts, island resorts, and boats ferrying tourists to resort islands.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in eastern Sabah as U.S. government employees must obtain special authorization to travel to parts of eastern Sabah.

Embassy Messages

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Quick Facts

Six months beyond date of arrival

At least one blank page required for entry stamp

Not normally required for stays of less than 90 days.

$10,000 or equivalent

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Kuala Lumpur

376 Jalan Tun Razak 50400, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Telephone: +(60) (3) 2168-5000 Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(60) (3) 2168-5000 (press 0 at the recording) Fax: +(60) (3) 2148-5801 Email:  [email protected]

Destination Description

Learn about the U.S. relationship to countries around the world.

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

To enter Malaysia, your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of your arrival in Malaysia.  You must have at least one blank page for the entry stamp.  Permission to enter and remain in Malaysia is under the authority of the Malaysian Immigration Department.  Visit the websites of the Embassy of Malaysia in Washington D.C . and the  Malaysian Immigration Department for more information.

Effective January 1, 2024, the Malaysian Immigration Department requires all travelers to complete the Malaysian Digital Arrival Card (MDAC) .  Permanent residents of Malaysia, long term-pass holders, and diplomatic and official passport holders are exempt from this requirement.  

For the latest information, travelers should review the Malaysian Immigration website .  You can submit an online inquiry form or contact the Malaysian Government call center (MyGCC) at +60 3-8000-8000.  If you are outside of Malaysia, you should contact the nearest Malaysian embassy or consulate if you have questions about Malaysian entry and exit requirements. 

If you are planning onward travel after departing Malaysia, please note that many other countries in the region require at least six months’ remaining validity on your passport to enter.

You do not need a visa if you are coming for business or tourism for 90 days or less.

Immigration officials will place an entry stamp, known as a social visit pass (visa), in your passport authorizing a stay of up to 90 days.  Travelers may apply to the Malaysian Immigration Department for extensions, which may or may not be granted.  You must exit Malaysia using the same passport that you used to enter.  If this passport is replaced for any reason before you depart Malaysia, you must apply with Immigration to obtain a “special pass” (exit permit) in your new passport prior to departing. 

Neither the U.S. Government nor the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur can intervene on your behalf when you apply for a Malaysian visa, nor can we advocate for your admission into Malaysia if you are denied entry.

Travel Document : Persons traveling on a USCIS-issued Refugee Travel Document issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) must apply for a visa prior to traveling to Malaysia.

Border Crossings:  Follow all entry instructions, present your passports only to immigration officials, and be sure immigration officials stamp your passport with the correct date upon entering and exiting Malaysia.  Lack of correct documentation or proof of entry into Malaysia may result in high fines and/or detention.

Sabah and Sarawak:  The eastern states of Sabah and Sarawak (on the island of Borneo) maintain semi-autonomous immigration controls and may have additional have special entry requirements.  You must have your passport to enter or exit Sabah or Sarawak, even when arriving from peninsular Malaysia on domestic flights. 

Dual Nationality:  Malaysia does not recognize or permit dual nationality.  If Malaysian authorities learn that you are a U.S.-Malaysian dual national, they may require you to immediately forfeit your U.S. passport or your Malaysian citizenship.  U.S.-Malaysian dual nationals should consider this issue seriously before traveling to Malaysia.  See our  dual nationality page  for more information.

U.S.-Israeli Dual Nationals:  The Malaysian government does not maintain diplomatic relations with Israel, and Immigration officials have denied entry to U.S.-Israeli dual nationals who have presented their Israeli passports to show exit stamps from their last destination point of departure.  U.S.-Israeli dual nationals should use their U.S. passports to depart the last country on their itinerary prior to arriving in Malaysia.

Visa Overstays:  Malaysian immigration authorities have exit controls at all official ports of departure and routinely fine and detain foreigners who overstay their social visit passes (visas).  If you overstay your visa, you will not be allowed to exit Malaysia until you resolve the overstay with the Immigration Department of Malaysia.

Carry your passport (containing the Malaysian entry stamp) with you at all times in case authorities question your immigration status.  Several U.S. citizens have been arrested during immigration sweeps based on inability to establish nationality and legal status in Malaysia.  Detentions may last from a few hours to several weeks.  Check your visa status periodically while in Malaysia and strictly follow immigration laws and regulations. 

Visit the Embassy of Malaysia website for the most current visa information.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Malaysia.

Find information on  prevention of international child abduction  and  customs regulations  on our website.

Safety and Security

Terrorism:  Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad.  Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds.  Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights) 

Malaysia remains a transit point and, to a lesser extent, a destination country for members of terrorist groups including ISIS, Abu Sayyaf Group, al-Qa’ida, and Jemaah Islamiyah.  Information from credible sources suggests that there is a continued risk of armed terrorist and criminal groups operating and planning attacks against foreigners, including U.S. citizens, in the East Asian and Pacific region, including Malaysia.  Since 2013, Malaysian authorities have arrested more than 500 supporters of ISIS, including many individuals who planned to fight in Syria and Iraq.

Use caution in eastern Sabah because of the threat of kidnappings-for-ransom and violence from both terrorist and criminal groups, including the Philippines-based Abu Sayyaf Group (see the  Philippines Travel Advisory for more information ).  In addition to targeting coastal or resort islands themselves, criminal or terrorist groups may attempt to intercept boats ferrying tourists from the mainland to resort islands. 

Due to safety concerns, U.S. government employees traveling for both personal and official travel to Sabah east of the north-south line drawn from the cities of Kudat to Tawau, including all islands, must obtain official written permission from the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.  The exceptions are the cities of Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Tawau, the Sepiloolik Nature Reserve, and the Kinabatangan River areas, which require U.S. government employees to officially notify the Embassy prior to travel.

Malaysian law enforcement officials have enacted land and water-based curfews in the coastal areas of eastern Sabah.  Check local media or ask local police for the most recent curfew information if traveling to eastern Sabah.

For more information, see our  Terrorism  page.  

Crime:   Petty theft and violent crime in Kuala Lumpur continue to be concerns. Purse snatchings, pickpocketing, smash-and-grab thefts from vehicles, and residential burglaries are the most common crimes committed against both locals and foreigners.  Avoid wrapping purse straps around arms or shoulders to avoid injury.  Violent and more serious crimes are less common; however, in October 2022, following local media reports of an increase in violent crime in the area of 430-440 Jalan Tun Razak, which houses multiple bars, clubs, and restaurants, the Embassy has advised U.S. government employees visiting establishments in this general vicinity to depart the neighborhood no later than 9:00 pm.

Taxi drivers in central Kuala Lumpur have perpetrated violent crimes against foreign tourists and local residents.  Use e-hailing services or book taxis in downtown shopping areas by phone or online, rather than hailing a taxi on the street, particularly after dark.

Criminals also target motorists stuck in traffic or stopped at a light with smash and grab robberies.  Keep valuables out of sight while driving or remove them from the car (including from the trunk) when parked.  GPS devices should not be left on the windshield or dashboard.

Demonstrations occur frequently.   They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events.  

  • Demonstrations can be unpredictable, avoid areas around protests and demonstrations.
  • Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.

Local law pertaining to peaceful assembly  prohibits  non-Malaysians from participating in public protests.

International Financial Scams:   See the  Department of State  and the  FBI  pages for information. 

Sophisticated internet romance and financial scams are prevalent in Malaysia.  Scams are often initiated through Internet postings/profiles or, less frequently, by unsolicited emails, letters, text messages, and messages on social media.  Scammers frequently pose as U.S. citizens who have no one else to turn to for help.  Common scams include:   

  • Romance/Online dating 
  • Money transfers 
  • Lucrative sales 
  • Gold purchase 
  • Contracts with promises of large commissions 
  • Inheritance notices 
  • Work permits/job offers 
  • Bank overpayments

Victims of Crime:  U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.  Report crimes to the local police via the emergency line at 999 (landline) or 112 (cell/mobile).  Alternatively, call the Royal Malaysia Police (RMP) Operations Center in Kuala Lumpur, 03-2115-9999 or 03-2266-2222 for advice on how to make a non-emergency police report.  Contact the U.S. Embassy at +(60) (3) 2168-5000 for assistance.  A police report is necessary for the Embassy to help victims follow up on incidents of crime.  In some tourist areas, the police have established small "Tourist Police” stations manned by personnel familiar with helping visitors to Malaysia.  Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting a crime.

See our webpage on  help for U.S. victims of crime overseas .

  • Help you find appropriate medical care  
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police 
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent 
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion 
  • Provide a list of local attorneys  
  • Provide our information on  victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution 
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home 
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport 

Domestic Violence:  U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy at +(60) (3) 2168-5000 for assistance.  Victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse may receive comprehensive care at the One Stop Crisis Centers (OSCC) located in all government hospitals.  The OSCC provide survivors medical care, temporary shelter, legal aid, and counseling.

Tourism:  The tourism industry is generally regulated and rules with regard to best practices and safety inspections are regularly enforced.  Hazardous areas/activities are identified with appropriate signage and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities.  In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country.  Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide life-saving assistance, and first responder capabilities may vary.  When participating in trekking or other activities in extremely remote areas, particularly in the eastern states of Sabah and Sarawak on the island of Borneo, it may be difficult for first responders to reach patients quickly.  

U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance.  See our webpage for more  information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties:  You are subject to local laws.  If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.  Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

Penalties for using, possessing, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Malaysia are more severe than those in the United States, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines, or death.   

It is illegal to take pictures of certain buildings such as military facilities, government buildings and offices, and Ministry of Health facilities including public hospitals and clinics.

Driving under the influence could land you immediately in jail.

Certain white-collar crimes are punishable by caning.

If you purchase or collect local plants or wildlife without authorization from the Malaysian government, you may be prosecuted and sentenced to heavy fines, expulsion and/or imprisonment.

It is illegal to distribute religious literature of another faith to Malaysian Muslims.  Special religious authorities and local police occasionally conduct raids on popular nightspots and hotels to deter activities among local Muslims that contravene religious customs, including drinking alcohol and adultery.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law.  For examples, see our website on  crimes against minors abroad  and the  Department of Justice  website.

Arrest Notification:  If you are arrested or detained, ask the police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.  See our  webpage  for further information.

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws.  You may also pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States.  See the  U.S. Department of Justice website  for more information.

Currency:  Currency exchange and Western Union money transfers are readily available.  Credit cards are accepted throughout the country, but you should be aware of the risk of fraud.  If possible, ensure your credit card remains in your presence during every transaction.  ATMs can be a safer means of obtaining Malaysian Ringgit.  PINs in Malaysia are six digits long, and some travelers have reported having difficulty retrieving cash from ATMs using four-digit PINs.

Faith-Based Travelers:   See the following webpages for details:

Faith-Based Travel Information

International Religious Freedom Report  – see country reports

Human Rights Report  – see country reports

Hajj Fact Sheet for Travelers  

Best Practices for Volunteering Abroad   

LGBTQI+ Travelers:  Malaysia’s penal code criminalizes homosexual acts, termed “carnal intercourse against the order of nature,” leading to punishment of up to 20 years in prison and/or whipping, and police periodically raid LGBTQI+ frequented nightclubs and events.  Foreign same-sex marriages or civil unions are not recognized as legally valid.  Several states in Malaysia have instated Islamic Sharia laws, applying to male and female Muslims, criminalizing same-sex activity with up to three years imprisonment and whipping.  Transgender individuals have been arrested and charged with "indecent behavior,” and received fines and prison sentences of up to three months.  Transgender individuals may also be denied entry to Malaysia at the discretion of the Malaysian immigration authorities.  LGBTQI+ individuals may face discrimination or even violence, especially in more conservative rural areas. See  LGBTQI+ Travel Information  page and section 6 of our  Human Rights Report  for further details.

Travelers With Disabilities:  The law in Malaysia prohibits discrimination against persons with physical, sensory, intellectual or mental disabilities, but the law is not regularly enforced.  Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is as prevalent as in the United States.  The most common types of accessibility may include accessible government facilities, information, and communication/access to services.  Expect accessibility to be limited in public transportation, older lodging, and older public infrastructure, and common in newer lodging, communication/information, and newer public infrastructure.  Accessibility is more limited in rural areas.

Malaysia has an active civil society and NGO community focused on disability welfare and protection. They are usually able to provide information and assistance in employment services, assistive devices and equipment, chore services, companion-based services, day services, and support network for parents.

See our Travelers with Disabilities page. 

Students:  See our  Students Abroad  page and  FBI travel tips .  

Women Travelers:  In cases of sexual assault, victims should go directly to the nearest major public hospital which will offer “one-stop” response including medical care and testing, forensic testing, access to the police to make a criminal report, legal assistance, counseling, and temporary shelter.  See our travel tips for  Women Travelers . 

For emergency services in Malaysia, dial 999 (landline) or 112 (cell/mobile).  Callers to 999 emergency number are directed to whichever government hospital the dispatcher chooses.

Ambulance services are:

  • Widely available but training and availability of emergency responders may be below U.S. standards.
  • Not equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment.  
  • Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for an ambulance (45+min).  

We do not pay medical bills.  Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas.  Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.  Malaysian hospitals will not bill your insurance directly.  You must provide payment and seek reimbursement.

Medical Insurance:   Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments.  See  our webpage  for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.  Visit the  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental MEDEVAC insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor’s prescription.  Check with the  Royal Malaysian Customs Department  to ensure the medication is legal in Malaysia.

Vaccinations:  Be up-to-date on all  vaccinations recommended  by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Further health information:

  • World Health Organization
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC)  

Air Quality:  Visit  AirNow Department of State  for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

The air quality varies considerably and fluctuates with the seasons.  It is typically at its worst in the dry season from July to October due to large agricultural fires in the region.  People at the greatest risk from particle pollution exposure include: 

  • Infants, children, and teens 
  • People over 65 years of age 
  • People with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema; 
  • People with heart disease or diabetes 
  • People who work or are active outdoors 

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals .  We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Medical Facilities and Services:

  • Adequate health facilities are available throughout the country but health care in rural areas may be below U.S. standards.
  • Private hospitals usually require advance payment before admitting a patient.  
  • Medical staff in rural areas may speak little English. 
  • Generally, in public hospitals only minimal staff is available overnight in non-emergency wards. Consider hiring a private nurse or having family spend the night with the patient, especially a minor child. 
  • Psychological and psychiatric services are limited, even in the larger cities, with hospital-based care typically only available through government institutions.

Medical Tourism and Elective Surgery

  • Medical tourism is a rapidly growing industry. People seeking health care overseas should understand that medical systems operate differently from those in the United States and are not subject to the same rules and regulations.  Anyone interested in traveling for medical purposes should consult with their local physician before traveling and visit the  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  website for more information on Medical Tourism.
  • Visit the  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  website for information on Medical Tourism, the risks of medical tourism, and what you can do to prepare before traveling to Malaysia. 
  • We strongly recommend supplemental MEDEVAC insurance  to cover medical evacuation in the event of unforeseen medical complications.  
  • Your legal options in case of malpractice are very limited in Malaysia.
  • Although Malaysia has many elective/cosmetic surgery facilities that are on par with those found in the United States, the quality of care varies widely.  If you plan to undergo surgery in Malaysia, make sure that emergency medical facilities are available and professionals are accredited and qualified.  


  • Exercise caution when purchasing medication overseas.  Pharmaceuticals, both over the counter and requiring prescription in the United States, are often readily available for purchase with little controls.  Counterfeit medication is common and may prove to be ineffective, the wrong strength, or contain dangerous ingredients.  Medication should be purchased in consultation with a medical professional and from reputable establishments.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States.  Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States.  Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States.  Please visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration websites for more information.

Assisted Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy

  • If you are considering traveling to Malaysia to have a child through use of assisted reproductive technology (ART) or surrogacy, please see our ART and Surrogacy Abroad page .
  • Although surrogacy agencies/clinics claim surrogacy is legal in Malaysia, there is no legal framework for foreigners or same-sex couples to pursue surrogacy in Malaysia.  As a result, surrogacy agreements between foreign or same-sex intending parents and gestational mothers are not enforced by Malaysia courts. 
  • If you decide to pursue parenthood in Malaysia via assisted reproductive technology (ART) with a gestational mother, be prepared for long and unexpected delays in documenting your child’s citizenship.  Be aware that individuals who attempt to circumvent local law risk criminal prosecution.

Water Quality

  • In many areas, tap water is not potable.  Bottled water and beverages are generally safe, although you should be aware that many restaurants and hotels serve tap water unless bottled water is specifically requested.  Be aware that ice for drinks may be made using tap water. 

Adventure Travel

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel .

General Health Language

The following diseases are prevalent:

  • Chikungunya
  • Leptospirosis 
  • Use the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended mosquito repellents and sleep under insecticide-impregnated mosquito nets.  Chemoprophylaxis is recommended for all travelers even for short stays.
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about  Resources for Travelers  regarding specific issues in Malaysia.   

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Road safety is a very serious safety concern.  Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Malaysia averagesd approximately 2219 traffic fatalities a day, placing it among the top 1020 most dangerous countries in which to operate a vehicle worldwide.  Undisciplined motorcycle and motor scooter operators are the principal cause of traffic accidents and constitute nearly two-thirds of all traffic fatalities.  Motorcyclists tend not to obey traffic laws and often travel without regard for their safety or that of other motorists.  As such, use turn signals well in advance of turning to alert motorcycles. 

Bottlenecks are common in major cities because road building has not kept pace with the spread of motorized vehicles.  Multi-lane highways often merge into narrow two-lane roads in the center of town and cause congestion.  Many streets are narrow and winding.  Traffic is heavy during the morning and afternoon rush hours and slows down considerably when it rains.  Monsoonal rains can quickly flood roads located in low-lying areas.

Traffic Laws: Traffic in Malaysia moves on the left side of the road, and most vehicles are right-hand drive.  By law, you must use your front and back seat belts and must not use your cell phone while driving unless it is hands-free (e.g., Bluetooth).  Turning left at a red light is not legal unless otherwise marked.  Carry your passport or Malaysian identification card at all times when driving.

If you are involved in a traffic accident:

  • Call the police immediately. Depending on the severity of the accident, you should call either the emergency number 999 (or 112 from a mobile phone) or the Royal Malaysia Police Operations Center in Kuala Lumpur, 03-2115-9999 or 03-2266-2222.
  • Stay in your car and wait for the police to arrive before exchanging information with other parties involved in the accident.

Reports of road rage incidents, especially after midnight, are rising.  Avoid confrontational behavior if you are involved in an accident.  If you are threatened, stay in your car and lock the doors.  If able, lleave the scene and file a report with the local police within 24 hours.

Sobriety Checkpoints: Laws against drinking and driving are strictly enforced and carry serious penalties.  Police operate sobriety checkpoints in many entertainment districts frequented by expatriates.  At these checkpoints, all drivers must submit to alcohol breath tests.  If you fail a breath test, you will be arrested.

Driver’s License Requirements: International Driving Permits (IDP) may be used in conjunction with a valid U.S. license.  The IDP must be obtained outside of Malaysia.  If your IDP or U.S. license has expired, you will need to obtain a local driver’s license.  Some classifications of visa holders may also be eligible for driver’s license “conversion,” a quicker process to obtain a local license.  For additional information on this process, please contact the Malaysian Ministry of Transportation directly.  The Ministry of Transportation recommends contacting a local driving school to arrange the paperwork.  In order to obtain a local license, you will also need a valid long-term visa or work permit.

Many car rental agencies in Malaysia are willing to rent vehicles for a short term to U.S. citizens with valid U.S. driver’s licenses.  Nevertheless, if you plan to drive in Malaysia, obtain an IDP before leaving the United States. More information on how to obtain an IDP is available on the  Driving Abroad  section of the Department of State website.

Public Transportation: There have been fatal and other serious accidents involving long-distance tour buses in Malaysia, particularly at night or in adverse weather conditions.  If you plan to travel by bus, choose a reputable company, and avoid overnight routes.

Taxis are metered, but many drivers refuse to use the meter and instead charge a much higher rate, particularly during peak hours, when it is raining or when the passenger’s destination is to or through a heavily congested area.  By regulation, metered fares increase by 50 percent between midnight and 6:00 a.m.; meters are programmed to display the higher fee automatically during these hours.  Many individuals prefer to book taxi and car services through widely-used smart phone apps both for convenience and fare transparency.

See our  Road Safety page  for more information.

Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Malaysia’s Civil Aviation Authority as not being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Malaysia’s air carrier operations.  Further information may be found on the  FAA’s safety assessment page .

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Malaysia should also check for  U.S. maritime advisories and alerts .   Information may also be posted to the   U.S. Coast Guard homeport website , and the  NGA broadcast warnings .

For additional travel information

  • Enroll in the  Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)  to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
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  • See the  State Department’s travel website  for the  Worldwide Caution  and  Travel Advisories .
  • Follow us on  Twitter  and  Facebook .
  • See  traveling safely abroad  for useful travel tips.

Review information about Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Malaysia . For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act ( ICAPRA ) report.

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COVID-19 Malaysia

COVID-19 MALAYSIA Kementerian Kesihatan Malaysia

Garis panduan kementerian kesihatan malaysia.

Garis Panduan Pengurusan COVID-19 di Malaysia No.5/2020 COVID-19 Management Guidelines in Malaysia No.5 / 2020

Updated Tue, 21 May 2024 11:01:00

ANNEX 1 : Case Definition of COVID-19 - 23/05/2022

  • Annex 2a : Flowchart Management of Suspected COVID-19 Case as Outpatient - 13/08/2021
  • Annex 2b : Flowchart Management of Suspected COVID-19 Case Requires Admission - 13/08/2021
  • Annex 2c : Screening and Triaging (Updated on 5 October 2020)
  • Annex 2d : Work Process of Pre Hospital Care And Emergency And Trauma Department (Updated on 5 October 2020)
  • Annex 2f : Flow Chart For Sampling COVID-19 By Private Health facilities (15/02/2021)
  • Annex 2g : Survelan ILI dan SARI (COVID-19 & INFLUENZA) - kk 04/10/2022
  • Annex 2h : Flowchart Management of Probable COVID-19 Case - 13/08/2021
  • Annex 2i : Field Investigation Form (Updated on 5 October 2020)
  • Annex 2j : Management Of Confirmed Covid-19 Case In Low Risk COVID-19 Quarantine And Treatment Centers (PKRC) - 26/11/2021
  • Annex 2m : Guidelines on Home Monitoring and Management of Confirmed COVID-19 Case At CAC in Primary Care 3rd Revision - 21/03/2022
  • Annex 2p : Guidelines On Pre-Admission Screening Of COVID-19 - 16/08/2023

ANNEX 3 : Senarai Pusat Saringan Dan Hospital Yang Mengendalikan Kes COVID-19 - 11/06/2021

  • Annex 4a : Senarai Makmal Yang Menjalankan Ujian RT-PCR Bagi COVID-19 - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4b : Laboratory Biosafety Guidelines For Handling And Processing Specimens - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4c : Specimen Collection, Transportation And Storage - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4d : Real-Time RT-PCR COVID-19 Testing - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4f : COVID-19 Rapid Molecular Testing - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4g : COVID-19 Rapid Test Kit Antigen (RTK-Ag) Testing for Professional Use - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 4h : Garis Panduan Pengurusan Penggunaan Kit Ujian Kendiri COVID-19
  • Annex 4i : Protokol Ujian RTK-Antigen COVID-19 Kendiri Seliaan Secara Maya - 21/09/2022
  • Annex 6a: Health Alert Card - 01/07/2021
  • Annex 6b: Mental Health Alert Card - 01/07/2021

ANNEX 7 : Notification Form - 21/03/2020

ANNEX 8 : Guidelines on Infection Prevention And Control (IPC) Measures In Managing Person Under Surveillance (PUS), Suspected, Probable Or Confirmed Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) - 01/09/2023

  • Annex 8a : Guidance On The Use Of Masks With Regards To Covid-19 Pandemic- 05/08/2020
  • Annex 8b : SOP Penggunaan Kenderaan Penghantaran Petugas Kesihatan - 05/08/2021

ANNEX 9 : Management of COVID-19 at Point of Entry - 26/12/2023

  • Annex 10a : Home Assessment tool (BM) - 14/07/2021
  • Annex 10b : Home Assessment tool (EN) - 14/07/2021
  • Annex 11: Preparation Of An Ambulance For Transport Of Suspected Or Confirmed Infectious Disease Patient - 21/11/2020

ANNEX 13 : Field Response Activity - 05/10/2020

  • Annex 14a : HSO for Close Contact (BI) - kk 30/01/2022
  • Annex 14b : Memakai Peranti Pengesanan Bawah PPN 06/10/2021 - PUA 293 2021
  • Annex 14c : Perintah Pengasingan Atau Pengawasan Orang Yang Dijangkiti COVID-19 atau Orang Yang Disyaki Dijangkiti COVID-19 - Peraturan 12A (PPN) 2021 [P.U. (A) 293/2021] - kk 23/02/2022
  • Annex 14d : Order for Isolation or Surveillance for Person Infected with COVID-19 Infection or Person Suspected of Being Infected by COVID-19 - Subregulation 12A (National Recovery Plan) [P.U.(A) 293/2021] - kk 23/02/2022
  • Annex 17a : Borang Pelepasan Dari Menjalani Perintah Pengasingan Atau Pengawasan Orang Yang Dijangkiti COVID-19 atau Orang Yang Disyaki Dijangkiti COVID-19 (BM) - kk 30/01/2022
  • Annex 17b : Release Order from Isolation or Surveillance for Person Infected with COVID-19 Infection or Person Suspected of Being Infected by COVID-19 (EN) - kk 30/01/2022
  • Annex 17c : Borang Pelepasan Dari Menjalani Perintah Pengawasan Dan Pemerhatian Bagi Kes Kontak Jangkitan COVID-19 (BM) - kk 30/01/2022
  • Annex 17d : Release Order from Order for Observation and Surveillance for Contact of Case infected with COVID-19 (EN) - kk 30/01/2022

ANNEX 20 : Guidelines For The Handling Of Dead Bodies Of Suspected/Probable/Confirmed COVID-19 - 01/08/2022)

  • Annex 20a : Garis Panduan Pengurusan Kematian Disyaki COVID-19 Di Luar Hospital Semasa Pandemik Edisi Kedua - 20/09/2022

ANNEX 21 : Management of Healthcare Workers (HCW) During COVID-19 Pandemic - 13/09/2023

ANNEX 22 : Guidelines On Surgical Management Of Suspected Or Confirmed COVID-19 - 02/03/2023

ANNEX 23 : Guidelines On Management Of COVID-19 In Obstetrics & Gynaecology - 03/05/2021

  • Annex 23a : Guidelines of COVID-19 in Obstetrics - 05/04/2022
  • Annex 23b : Guidelines On The Referrel To COVID-19 One Stop Perinatal Center - 15/10/2021

ANNEX 24 : Radiology Services Guideline In The Management of COVID-19 - 17/06/2021

ANNEX 25 : COVID-19 Management Guidelines For Workplaces - 13/09/2023

  • Annex 25a : Guide To Conduct A Risk Assessment (RA) To Determine The Risk Status Of Workplaces For COVID-19 Testing (this is part of National Testing Strategy) - 15/11/2021

ANNEX 26 : COVID-19 Guidelines For Physical Distancing At The Workplace, Home & For Individuals - 24/09/2021

ANNEX 27 : COVID-19 Management & Guidelines For Special Settings - 23/09/2021

  • Annex 27b : Care Of Older Persons In Residential Aged Care Facilities And In The Community During COVID-19 Pandemic - 11/06/2021
  • Annex 27c : Panduan Pencegahan Dan Pengawalan Penyakit COVID-19 Di Fasiliti Kesihatan Swasta - 17/06/2021
  • Annex 27d : COVID-19 Management Plan In RESIDENTIAL AGED CARE FACILITIES (RACF) - MAY 2022

ANNEX 28 : Guideline On Management Of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) In Dialysis Centres & Nephrology Units - 28/02/2022

ANNEX 29 : Intensive Care Preparedness And Management For COVID-19 - 17/06/2021

ANNEX 30 : Guidelines On OTORHINOLARYNGOLOGY (ORL) Services During COVID 19 - 11/06/2021

ANNEX 31 : Guidelines On Management Of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) In Neonates (Updated March 2022)

ANNEX 32 : Quarantine centre - 22/03/2020

  • ANNEX 32a : Garis Panduan Penubuhan, Pengoperasian dan Pemantauan Operasi Stesen Kuarantin COVID-19 Swasta (QS SWASTA) - Kemaskini 10/02/2022
  • ANNEX 32b : Garis Panduan Penubuhan dan Pengoperasian Pusat Kuarantin dan Rawatan COVID-19 Berisiko Rendah Swasta (PKRCS) - kk 26/11/2021

ANNEX 33 : Mental health and Psychosocial support - 23/03/2020

ANNEX 34 : Guidelines On The PICU Management of Children With COVID-19 - 12/07/2021

ANNEX 35 : Guidelines Of Infection Control And Clinical Management Of Severe Acute Respiratory Infections (SARI) / Pneumonia TRO COVID-19 - 05/12/2020

ANNEX 36 : Tatacara Pembersihan dan Disinfeksi - 25/03/2022 ANNEX 37 : Guideline On Management Of Electroconvulsive Therapy During COVID-19 Pandemic - 03/05/2021

  • ANNEX 38a : MyVas COVID-19 Booking Management System - Module Reference Guide Version 4.0 - updated 13/12/2023
  • ANNEX 38b : MySejahtera User Manual - Add Tagging For PAXLOVID, COVID-19 Vaccination Center, and Government Clinic Version 1.0 - 28/12/2023

ANNEX 39 : Garis Panduan Pelaksanaan Inisiatif Hospital Rakan Bayi Semasa Pandemik COVID-19 - 19/08/2021

ANNEX 40 : Guidelines On Resuscitation During COVID-19 Pandemic – Version 4/2021 - 17/06/2021

ANNEX 41 : Garis Panduan Pusat Pemindahan Sementara Mangsa Bencana Bagi Mencegah COVID-19 - 20/09/2022

ANNEX 43 : Guideline For Collection, Processing & Use Of Convalescent Plasma (CP) For Experimental Treatment Of COVID-19 - 12/11/2020

ANNEX 44 : Guidelines On Transfer Of Paediatric Cardiology Patients From High-Risk COVID-19 Areas To Referral Hospital Across State Using Airplane - 17/06/2021

ANNEX 45 : Classification Of COVID-19 Death - 10/01/2024

ANNEX 46 : Guideline On Transplant - 11/06/2021

  • Annex 46a : Guideline On Organ, Tissue Donation and Transplantation Service In Malaysia During The COVID-19 Pandemic - 27/12/2021

ANNEX 47 : Tracheostomy Guidelines During COVID-19 Pandemic - 11/06/2021.pdf

ANNEX 48 : Clinical Guidelines on COVID-19 Vaccination In Malaysia 4th Edition - 19/10/2021

  • Annex 48a : Garis Panduan Pengurusan Produk Vaksin COVID-19 (Versi 5) - 14/10/2021
  • Annex 48b : Clinical Guidelines On COVID-19 Vaccination (ASTRAZENECA) - 28/02/2021
  • Annex 48c : Clinical Guide To COVID-19 Vaccination In Children & Adolescents - 13/08/2021
  • Annex 48d : Clinical Guide to COVID Vaccination in Children 5-11 years - May 2022

ANNEX 49 : Garis Panduan Pencegahan dan Kawalan Semasa Aktiviti Pendermaan Darah - 12/07/2021

ANNEX 50 : Post COVID-19 Management Protocol - 12/07/2021

ANNEX 51 : Garis Panduan Pengurusan Wabak COVID-19 Program Kesihatan Pergigian - 26/08/2022

ANNEX 52 : Guidelines On Ventilation In Healthcare Setting To Reduce The Transmission Of Respiratory Pathogens - 05/08/2021

Articles Travel Requirements - Malaysia

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31/05/2024 • FAQs


  • Tourists with eVisa - Visit Pass (VP) Social for 30 days.
  • Expatriates with eVisa - Employment pass (EP) who are still subject to the existing policy.

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Travel health notices, vaccines and medicines, non-vaccine-preventable diseases, stay healthy and safe.

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Map - Malaysia

Be aware of current health issues in Malaysia. Learn how to protect yourself.

Level 1 Practice Usual Precautions

  • Global Measles May 28, 2024 Many international destinations are reporting increased numbers of cases of measles. Destination List: Afghanistan, Angola, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Republic of South Sudan, Republic of the Congo, Romania, Russia, Senegal, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Togo, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Zambia

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Check the vaccines and medicines list and visit your doctor at least a month before your trip to get vaccines or medicines you may need. If you or your doctor need help finding a location that provides certain vaccines or medicines, visit the Find a Clinic page.

Routine vaccines


Make sure you are up-to-date on all routine vaccines before every trip. Some of these vaccines include

  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis
  • Flu (influenza)
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR)

Immunization schedules

All eligible travelers should be up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines. Please see  Your COVID-19 Vaccination  for more information. 

COVID-19 vaccine


There has been evidence of chikungunya virus transmission in Malaysia within the last 5 years. Chikungunya vaccination may be considered for the following travelers:

  • People aged 65 years or older, especially those with underlying medical conditions, who may spend at least 2 weeks (cumulative time) in indoor or outdoor areas where mosquitoes are present in Malaysia, OR
  • People planning to stay in Malaysia for a cumulative period of 6 months or more

Chikungunya - CDC Yellow Book

There is no longer active cholera transmission and vaccine is not recommended.

Cholera - CDC Yellow Book

Hepatitis A

Recommended for unvaccinated travelers one year old or older going to Malaysia.

Infants 6 to 11 months old should also be vaccinated against Hepatitis A. The dose does not count toward the routine 2-dose series.

Travelers allergic to a vaccine component or who are younger than 6 months should receive a single dose of immune globulin, which provides effective protection for up to 2 months depending on dosage given.

Unvaccinated travelers who are over 40 years old, immunocompromised, or have chronic medical conditions planning to depart to a risk area in less than 2 weeks should get the initial dose of vaccine and at the same appointment receive immune globulin.

Hepatitis A - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Hep A

Hepatitis B

Recommended for unvaccinated travelers younger than 60 years old traveling to Malaysia. Unvaccinated travelers 60 years and older may get vaccinated before traveling to Malaysia.

Hepatitis B - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Hep B

Japanese Encephalitis

Recommended for travelers who

  • Are moving to an area with Japanese encephalitis to live
  • Spend long periods of time, such as a month or more, in areas with Japanese encephalitis
  • Frequently travel to areas with Japanese encephalitis

Consider vaccination for travelers

  • Spending less than a month in areas with Japanese encephalitis but will be doing activities that increase risk of infection, such as visiting rural areas, hiking or camping, or staying in places without air conditioning, screens, or bed nets
  • Going to areas with Japanese encephalitis who are uncertain of their activities or how long they will be there

Not recommended for travelers planning short-term travel to urban areas or travel to areas with no clear Japanese encephalitis season. 

Japanese encephalitis - CDC Yellow Book

Japanese Encephalitis Vaccine for US Children

CDC recommends that travelers going to certain areas of Malaysia take prescription medicine to prevent malaria. Depending on the medicine you take, you will need to start taking this medicine multiple days before your trip, as well as during and after your trip. Talk to your doctor about which malaria medication you should take.

Find  country-specific information  about malaria.

Malaria - CDC Yellow Book

Considerations when choosing a drug for malaria prophylaxis (CDC Yellow Book)

Malaria information for Malaysia.

Cases of measles are on the rise worldwide. Travelers are at risk of measles if they have not been fully vaccinated at least two weeks prior to departure, or have not had measles in the past, and travel internationally to areas where measles is spreading.

All international travelers should be fully vaccinated against measles with the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, including an early dose for infants 6–11 months, according to  CDC’s measles vaccination recommendations for international travel .

Measles (Rubeola) - CDC Yellow Book

Dogs infected with rabies are sometimes found in Malaysia.

If rabies exposures occur while in Malaysia, rabies vaccines are typically available throughout most of the country.

Rabies pre-exposure vaccination considerations include whether travelers 1) will be performing occupational or recreational activities that increase risk for exposure to potentially rabid animals and 2) might have difficulty getting prompt access to safe post-exposure prophylaxis.

Please consult with a healthcare provider to determine whether you should receive pre-exposure vaccination before travel.

For more information, see country rabies status assessments .

Rabies - CDC Yellow Book

Recommended for most travelers, especially those staying with friends or relatives or visiting smaller cities or rural areas.

Typhoid - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Typhoid

Yellow Fever

Required for travelers ≥1 year old arriving from countries with risk for YF virus transmission; this includes >12-hour airport transits or layovers in countries with risk for YF virus transmission. 1

Yellow Fever - CDC Yellow Book

Avoid contaminated water


How most people get sick (most common modes of transmission)

  • Touching urine or other body fluids from an animal infected with leptospirosis
  • Swimming or wading in urine-contaminated fresh water, or contact with urine-contaminated mud
  • Drinking water or eating food contaminated with animal urine
  • Avoid contaminated water and soil
  • Avoid floodwater

Clinical Guidance

Avoid bug bites.

  • Mosquito bite
  • Avoid Bug Bites
  • Mosquito bite
  • An infected pregnant woman can spread it to her unborn baby

Airborne & droplet

  • Breathing in air or accidentally eating food contaminated with the urine, droppings, or saliva of infected rodents
  • Bite from an infected rodent
  • Less commonly, being around someone sick with hantavirus (only occurs with Andes virus)
  • Avoid rodents and areas where they live
  • Avoid sick people

Tuberculosis (TB)

  • Breathe in TB bacteria that is in the air from an infected and contagious person coughing, speaking, or singing.

Learn actions you can take to stay healthy and safe on your trip. Vaccines cannot protect you from many diseases in Malaysia, so your behaviors are important.

Eat and drink safely

Food and water standards around the world vary based on the destination. Standards may also differ within a country and risk may change depending on activity type (e.g., hiking versus business trip). You can learn more about safe food and drink choices when traveling by accessing the resources below.

  • Choose Safe Food and Drinks When Traveling
  • Water Treatment Options When Hiking, Camping or Traveling
  • Global Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)
  • Avoid Contaminated Water During Travel

You can also visit the Department of State Country Information Pages for additional information about food and water safety.

Prevent bug bites

Bugs (like mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas) can spread a number of diseases in Malaysia. Many of these diseases cannot be prevented with a vaccine or medicine. You can reduce your risk by taking steps to prevent bug bites.

What can I do to prevent bug bites?

  • Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
  • Use an appropriate insect repellent (see below).
  • Use permethrin-treated clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents). Do not use permethrin directly on skin.
  • Stay and sleep in air-conditioned or screened rooms.
  • Use a bed net if the area where you are sleeping is exposed to the outdoors.

What type of insect repellent should I use?

  • FOR PROTECTION AGAINST TICKS AND MOSQUITOES: Use a repellent that contains 20% or more DEET for protection that lasts up to several hours.
  • Picaridin (also known as KBR 3023, Bayrepel, and icaridin)
  • Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para-menthane-diol (PMD)
  • 2-undecanone
  • Always use insect repellent as directed.

What should I do if I am bitten by bugs?

  • Avoid scratching bug bites, and apply hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion to reduce the itching.
  • Check your entire body for ticks after outdoor activity. Be sure to remove ticks properly.

What can I do to avoid bed bugs?

Although bed bugs do not carry disease, they are an annoyance. See our information page about avoiding bug bites for some easy tips to avoid them. For more information on bed bugs, see Bed Bugs .

For more detailed information on avoiding bug bites, see Avoid Bug Bites .

Stay safe outdoors

If your travel plans in Malaysia include outdoor activities, take these steps to stay safe and healthy during your trip.

  • Stay alert to changing weather conditions and adjust your plans if conditions become unsafe.
  • Prepare for activities by wearing the right clothes and packing protective items, such as bug spray, sunscreen, and a basic first aid kit.
  • Consider learning basic first aid and CPR before travel. Bring a travel health kit with items appropriate for your activities.
  • If you are outside for many hours in heat, eat salty snacks and drink water to stay hydrated and replace salt lost through sweating.
  • Protect yourself from UV radiation : use sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15, wear protective clothing, and seek shade during the hottest time of day (10 a.m.–4 p.m.).
  • Be especially careful during summer months and at high elevation. Because sunlight reflects off snow, sand, and water, sun exposure may be increased during activities like skiing, swimming, and sailing.
  • Very cold temperatures can be dangerous. Dress in layers and cover heads, hands, and feet properly if you are visiting a cold location.

Stay safe around water

  • Swim only in designated swimming areas. Obey lifeguards and warning flags on beaches.
  • Practice safe boating—follow all boating safety laws, do not drink alcohol if driving a boat, and always wear a life jacket.
  • Do not dive into shallow water.
  • Do not swim in freshwater in developing areas or where sanitation is poor.
  • Avoid swallowing water when swimming. Untreated water can carry germs that make you sick.
  • To prevent infections, wear shoes on beaches where there may be animal waste.

Keep away from animals

Most animals avoid people, but they may attack if they feel threatened, are protecting their young or territory, or if they are injured or ill. Animal bites and scratches can lead to serious diseases such as rabies.

Follow these tips to protect yourself:

  • Do not touch or feed any animals you do not know.
  • Do not allow animals to lick open wounds, and do not get animal saliva in your eyes or mouth.
  • Avoid rodents and their urine and feces.
  • Traveling pets should be supervised closely and not allowed to come in contact with local animals.
  • If you wake in a room with a bat, seek medical care immediately. Bat bites may be hard to see.

All animals can pose a threat, but be extra careful around dogs, bats, monkeys, sea animals such as jellyfish, and snakes. If you are bitten or scratched by an animal, immediately:

  • Wash the wound with soap and clean water.
  • Go to a doctor right away.
  • Tell your doctor about your injury when you get back to the United States.

Consider buying medical evacuation insurance. Rabies is a deadly disease that must be treated quickly, and treatment may not be available in some countries.

Reduce your exposure to germs

Follow these tips to avoid getting sick or spreading illness to others while traveling:

  • Wash your hands often, especially before eating.
  • If soap and water aren’t available, clean hands with hand sanitizer (containing at least 60% alcohol).
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you need to touch your face, make sure your hands are clean.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Try to avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay home or in your hotel room, unless you need medical care.

Avoid sharing body fluids

Diseases can be spread through body fluids, such as saliva, blood, vomit, and semen.

Protect yourself:

  • Use latex condoms correctly.
  • Do not inject drugs.
  • Limit alcohol consumption. People take more risks when intoxicated.
  • Do not share needles or any devices that can break the skin. That includes needles for tattoos, piercings, and acupuncture.
  • If you receive medical or dental care, make sure the equipment is disinfected or sanitized.

Know how to get medical care while traveling

Plan for how you will get health care during your trip, should the need arise:

  • Carry a list of local doctors and hospitals at your destination.
  • Review your health insurance plan to determine what medical services it would cover during your trip. Consider purchasing travel health and medical evacuation insurance.
  • Carry a card that identifies, in the local language, your blood type, chronic conditions or serious allergies, and the generic names of any medications you take.
  • Some prescription drugs may be illegal in other countries. Call Malaysia’s embassy to verify that all of your prescription(s) are legal to bring with you.
  • Bring all the medicines (including over-the-counter medicines) you think you might need during your trip, including extra in case of travel delays. Ask your doctor to help you get prescriptions filled early if you need to.

Many foreign hospitals and clinics are accredited by the Joint Commission International. A list of accredited facilities is available at their website ( www.jointcommissioninternational.org ).

In some countries, medicine (prescription and over-the-counter) may be substandard or counterfeit. Bring the medicines you will need from the United States to avoid having to buy them at your destination.

Malaria is a risk in some parts of Malaysia. If you are going to a risk area, fill your malaria prescription before you leave, and take enough with you for the entire length of your trip. Follow your doctor’s instructions for taking the pills; some need to be started before you leave.

Select safe transportation

Motor vehicle crashes are the #1 killer of healthy US citizens in foreign countries.

In many places cars, buses, large trucks, rickshaws, bikes, people on foot, and even animals share the same lanes of traffic, increasing the risk for crashes.

Be smart when you are traveling on foot.

  • Use sidewalks and marked crosswalks.
  • Pay attention to the traffic around you, especially in crowded areas.
  • Remember, people on foot do not always have the right of way in other countries.


Choose a safe vehicle.

  • Choose official taxis or public transportation, such as trains and buses.
  • Ride only in cars that have seatbelts.
  • Avoid overcrowded, overloaded, top-heavy buses and minivans.
  • Avoid riding on motorcycles or motorbikes, especially motorbike taxis. (Many crashes are caused by inexperienced motorbike drivers.)
  • Choose newer vehicles—they may have more safety features, such as airbags, and be more reliable.
  • Choose larger vehicles, which may provide more protection in crashes.

Think about the driver.

  • Do not drive after drinking alcohol or ride with someone who has been drinking.
  • Consider hiring a licensed, trained driver familiar with the area.
  • Arrange payment before departing.

Follow basic safety tips.

  • Wear a seatbelt at all times.
  • Sit in the back seat of cars and taxis.
  • When on motorbikes or bicycles, always wear a helmet. (Bring a helmet from home, if needed.)
  • Avoid driving at night; street lighting in certain parts of Malaysia may be poor.
  • Do not use a cell phone or text while driving (illegal in many countries).
  • Travel during daylight hours only, especially in rural areas.
  • If you choose to drive a vehicle in Malaysia, learn the local traffic laws and have the proper paperwork.
  • Get any driving permits and insurance you may need. Get an International Driving Permit (IDP). Carry the IDP and a US-issued driver's license at all times.
  • Check with your auto insurance policy's international coverage, and get more coverage if needed. Make sure you have liability insurance.
  • Avoid using local, unscheduled aircraft.
  • If possible, fly on larger planes (more than 30 seats); larger airplanes are more likely to have regular safety inspections.
  • Try to schedule flights during daylight hours and in good weather.

Medical Evacuation Insurance

If you are seriously injured, emergency care may not be available or may not meet US standards. Trauma care centers are uncommon outside urban areas. Having medical evacuation insurance can be helpful for these reasons.

Helpful Resources

Road Safety Overseas (Information from the US Department of State): Includes tips on driving in other countries, International Driving Permits, auto insurance, and other resources.

The Association for International Road Travel has country-specific Road Travel Reports available for most countries for a minimal fee.

Traffic flows on the left side of the road in Malaysia.

  • Always pay close attention to the flow of traffic, especially when crossing the street.
  • LOOK RIGHT for approaching traffic.

Maintain personal security

Use the same common sense traveling overseas that you would at home, and always stay alert and aware of your surroundings.

Before you leave

  • Research your destination(s), including local laws, customs, and culture.
  • Monitor travel advisories and alerts and read travel tips from the US Department of State.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) .
  • Leave a copy of your itinerary, contact information, credit cards, and passport with someone at home.
  • Pack as light as possible, and leave at home any item you could not replace.

While at your destination(s)

  • Carry contact information for the nearest US embassy or consulate .
  • Carry a photocopy of your passport and entry stamp; leave the actual passport securely in your hotel.
  • Follow all local laws and social customs.
  • Do not wear expensive clothing or jewelry.
  • Always keep hotel doors locked, and store valuables in secure areas.
  • If possible, choose hotel rooms between the 2nd and 6th floors.

Healthy Travel Packing List

Use the Healthy Travel Packing List for Malaysia for a list of health-related items to consider packing for your trip. Talk to your doctor about which items are most important for you.

Why does CDC recommend packing these health-related items?

It’s best to be prepared to prevent and treat common illnesses and injuries. Some supplies and medicines may be difficult to find at your destination, may have different names, or may have different ingredients than what you normally use.

If you are not feeling well after your trip, you may need to see a doctor. If you need help finding a travel medicine specialist, see Find a Clinic . Be sure to tell your doctor about your travel, including where you went and what you did on your trip. Also tell your doctor if you were bitten or scratched by an animal while traveling.

If your doctor prescribed antimalarial medicine for your trip, keep taking the rest of your pills after you return home. If you stop taking your medicine too soon, you could still get sick.

Malaria is always a serious disease and may be a deadly illness. If you become ill with a fever either while traveling in a malaria-risk area or after you return home (for up to 1 year), you should seek immediate medical attention and should tell the doctor about your travel history.

For more information on what to do if you are sick after your trip, see Getting Sick after Travel .

Map Disclaimer - The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on maps do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. Approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement are generally marked.

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Warnings and insurance

travel to malaysia covid rules

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office ( FCDO ) provides advice about risks of travel to help British nationals make informed decisions. Find out more about FCDO travel advice .

Areas where FCDO advises against all but essential travel

Your travel insurance could be invalidated if you travel against FCDO advice.

Eastern Sabah coastal islands

FCDO advises against all but essential travel to all islands and dive sites off the coast of eastern Sabah from Sandakan to Tawau, including Lankayan Island, due to the threat of kidnapping. This does not apply to the mainland of Sabah.

Find out more about why FCDO advises against travel .

Before you travel

No travel can be guaranteed safe. Read all the advice in this guide and any specific travel advice that applies to you: 

  • disabled people  
  • LGBT+ people

Follow and contact FCDO travel on Twitter , Facebook and Instagram . You can also sign up to get email notifications when this advice is updated.

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If you choose to travel, research your destinations and get appropriate travel insurance . Insurance should cover your itinerary, planned activities and expenses in an emergency.

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Latest update

Exercise normal safety precautions in Malaysia.


Malaysia (PDF 367.29 KB)

Asia (PDF 2.21 MB)

Local emergency contacts

Fire and rescue services, medical emergencies.

Call 999 or contact the Royal Malaysia Police Operations Centre on 321 159 999 or 322 662 222.

Advice levels

Reconsider your need to travel to the coastal region of eastern Sabah, including the islands, dive sites and associated tourist facilities.

Reconsider your need to travel to the coastal region of eastern Sabah, including the islands, dive sites and associated tourist facilities, due to the high threat of kidnapping. The risk of kidnapping increases on the water and waterfront after nightfall and is highest in the area between the towns of Sandakan and Tawau.

See Safety .

  • There is a risk of terrorism in Malaysia. Terrorism is a global threat. Attacks could be random and small-scale. Possible targets could include tourist areas and a range of other locations frequented by foreigners (see Full Advice - Safety below), including in Kuala Lumpur. Take official warnings seriously. There was an armed attack on a police station in Johor Bahru on 17 May in which two police officers were killed.  
  • There's an ongoing high risk of kidnapping in the coastal areas of eastern Sabah. There have been a number of attempted and successful kidnappings. This includes islands, dive sites and tourist facilities. If, despite our advice, you travel to these areas, get professional security advice. Obey all local governments' curfews.
  • Petty crime is common. Bag-snatching, including by thieves on motorbikes, happens often. When walking, hold your bag on the opposite side to the traffic. Safeguard your belongings, especially in shopping centres, at the airport and on trains. Credit card fraud is common. Always keep your credit card in sight when paying for purchases.
  • Assault, sexual assault, robbery and drink spiking can occur, including in tourist areas of Kuala Lumpur and Penang. Don't leave your food or drinks unattended. Never accept food, drinks, cigarettes or gum from strangers. Stay with people you trust at parties, bars, nightclubs and taxis.
  • Piracy in South-East Asian waters is an ongoing problem. Avoid travelling by boat in the southern Sulu Sea. If you intend to travel in the region by boat, check the International Maritime Bureau's piracy reports . Arrange personal security measures.

Full travel advice: Safety

  • Strict rules control the importation of prescription and non-prescription medication. If you plan to bring medication, check if it's legal in Malaysia.
  • Dengue fever is common, including in major urban areas. Zika virus is also a risk. Malaria is a risk in rural areas. Other insect-borne diseases include chikungunya, filariasis and Japanese encephalitis. 
  • Rabies is present in Malaysia. It's fatal without immediate treatment. Avoid dogs, monkeys and other mammals. Get medical help straight away if an animal bites or scratches you.
  • Waterborne, foodborne, parasitic and other infectious diseases are common. These include hepatitis, tuberculosis, typhoid and cholera. Drink only boiled or bottled water. Avoid raw or undercooked food.
  • Private hospitals in major cities are of an international standard. You'll need to pay up-front at all hospitals unless you have travel insurance, and your travel insurance policy covers your hospitalisation. Services are more limited in rural areas. Government hospitals require a deposit even if you have travel insurance.
  • Cases of pertussis (whooping cough) have increased in Sabah. Ensure you're immunised against pertussis and practice good personal hygiene.

Full travel advice: Health

  • If you're suspected of using drugs, you may be required to take a urine test on arrival in Malaysia. This includes if you're travelling from a country where possession and use of drugs such as cannabis is legal. Penalties for drug offences are severe. 
  • Don't use, carry or traffic illegal drugs. Punishments include the death penalty.
  • It's unclear if surrogacy is legal under Malaysian civil law and what conditions apply. Get legal advice before arranging a surrogacy.

Malaysian law requires that you carry identification, such as your passport or a Malaysian Immigration Issued Card (IKAD), with you at all times. If you are asked by police and are unable to provide it, you may be detained until you can present valid identification.

  • Malaysia is a multicultural but mostly Islamic country. Many areas have conservative standards of dress and behaviour, including at religious sites and government offices. Get advice on local customs.
  • Malaysia enforces some aspects of sharia law. These laws apply to all Muslims, including visitors from Australia. Research laws that apply to you before you travel.
  • Malaysia doesn't recognise dual nationality. Always travel on your Australian passport. If Malaysian authorities find out you're a dual citizen, you may need to renounce one of your citizenships immediately, or you may not be permitted to depart Malaysia.

Full travel advice: Local laws

You must complete a  Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC)  before arrival in Malaysia. The MDAC must be submitted through the  Malaysian Immigration website . See the  Malaysian Immigration website  for further information, including exemption details.

  • In most circumstances, you can get a 90-day tourism visa on arrival. Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact the nearest Malaysian High Commission, Embassy or Consulate for the latest details.
  • Malaysia has an auto gate facility for visitors from several countries, including Australia. The option to use the manual counter for a visa is still available. To use the auto gate facilities, Australian travellers must have a passport valid for at least 6 months and must complete and submit their  Malaysian Digital Arrival Card  (MDAC) 3 days before arriving. The auto gate facility is unavailable for Australian passport holders with Malaysian permanent residency or a long-term pass. This auto gate facility is available at Kuala Lumpur International Airport Terminals 1 and 2. Further information can be found on the  Malaysia Digital Arrival Card  website.
  • Monitor the websites of the  Malaysian Department of Immigration,  My Safe Travel , the  Malaysian Ministry of Health , and social media for any changes to entry requirements. Before travel, confirm entry requirements with the  Malaysian High Commission or Consulate-General in Australia .

Full travel advice: Travel

Local contacts

  • The Consular Services Charter details what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
  • For consular help, contact the Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur .
  • To stay up to date with local information, follow the High Commission's social media accounts.

Full travel advice: Local contacts

Full advice

Terrorist attacks could happen in Malaysia. Attacks could be random and may affect locations popular with foreigners or during major events or holidays that attract large crowds.

Malaysian authorities have arrested people for planning terror attacks. This includes attacks against entertainment venues in Kuala Lumpur.

There was an armed attack on a police station in Johor Bahru on 17 May in which two police officers were killed.

Other possible targets include:

  • hotels, clubs, restaurants and cafes
  • markets and shopping malls
  • places of worship or religious holidays
  • outdoor recreation events
  • tourist areas
  • government facilities
  • public transport

To stay safe:

  • be alert to possible threats, especially in public places
  • be cautious around places known to be possible terrorist targets
  • report any suspicious activity or items to police
  • check the media for any new or emerging threats
  • take official warnings seriously
  • follow the advice of local authorities

If there's an attack, leave the area as soon as it's safe. 

Terrorism is a threat worldwide.

More information:

Terrorist threats

Overland travel through Thailand

Read our travel advice for Thailand if you're planning to go there overland.

Avoid travelling to or through the far southern provinces of Thailand.

Kidnapping occurs across the world with political, ideological, and criminal motives. Foreigners, including Australians, have been kidnapped overseas whilst travelling. Kidnaps can happen anywhere, anytime, including in destinations that are typically at lower risk.  

There's an ongoing high threat of kidnapping in the coastal areas of eastern Sabah, including islands, dive sites and other tourist facilities.

Extremists based in the southern Philippines are active in the area between the towns of Sandakan and Tawau in eastern Sabah.

Foreigners have been kidnapped from the nearby islands of Sipadan and Mataking and surrounding waters.

Some attempted and successful kidnappings have happened in coastal areas of eastern Sabah in recent years.

  • In April 2024, two Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency personnel were injured in a shootout with a suspicious vessel while on patrol near Kunak.
  • In May 2021, Malaysian authorities arrested eight suspected Abu Sayyaf militants who they suspect may have been planning kidnappings in Malaysia.
  • In September 2019, 3 fishermen were abducted in the waters off Lahad Datu.
  • In June 2019, 10 fishermen were abducted in waters between Lahad Datu, Sabah and Sitangkai, Southern Philippines.
  • In December 2018, 3 fishermen were abducted from Pegasus Reef near Kinabatangan, Sabah.
  • In November 2016, militants based in the southern Philippines attacked a yacht in waters between eastern Sabah and the Sulu archipelago. One German national was killed and another kidnapped and later killed.  Further in 2016, some commercial seamen were kidnapped from cargo vessels in the area.
  • In May 2015, gunmen entered a local seaside restaurant in Sandakan and abducted the manager and one customer.

Malaysian authorities increased security in the region in response to kidnapping incidents. The Sabah Government has restricted the use of waterways.

Security measures

There's a 6pm to 6am curfew on water travel in 6 coastal districts of eastern Sabah state. This includes offshore areas up to 3 nautical miles (5.5km) from the coast.

All vessels travelling in the waters off Lahad Datu and Sandakan in daylight hours must get a permit or permission from police.

Vessels must travel only on designated routes.

There's a ban on resort-organised water activities at night. This includes diving and fishing.

Authorities established the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZone), which includes the regions of:

  • Kinabatangan
  • Kota Marudu

There's an increased presence of security forces in the ESSZone.

Authorities may extend the water travel curfew each fortnight. If you travel by water during curfew hours without permission, authorities could fine you or jail you for up to 6 months.

If, despite our advice, you travel to an area with a high risk of kidnapping, our ability to provide consular assistance in these destinations will be limited.  

To reduce the risk of kidnapping:  

  • always be alert to your personal security and surroundings  
  • get professional security advice for travel in locations with a heightened kidnap risk  
  • check your accommodation has appropriate security measures  
  • avoid isolated locations, particularly when travelling alone  
  • notify family or friends of planned travel and share your location   
  • avoid talking about your money or business affairs  
  • use ATMs in public places and during daylight hours  
  • avoid giving personal details to strangers online or over the phone

The Australian Government's longstanding policy is that it doesn't make payments or concessions to kidnappers. Ransom payments to kidnappers have funded further terrorist attacks and criminal activity. Paying a ransom to terrorist groups will likely break Australian counter-terrorism financing laws.  

Civil unrest and political tension

You could encounter protests or demonstrations on the streets or at certain venues.

Protest activity could lead to violence and disrupt public services, including public transport, and cause traffic congestion. However, this is rare.

Police permission is needed for public gatherings and demonstrations. If you take part in a protest or demonstration, authorities could arrest and deport you.

Avoid protests and demonstrations.

During periods of unrest:

  • check the news and other sources for information on planned and possible unrest or strikes
  • plan your activities to avoid unrest on national or commemorative days
  • be ready to change your travel plans

If civil unrest disrupts your transport plans, contact your airline, travel agent or insurer for help.

Demonstrations and civil unrest

Petty crime

Petty crime is common.

Opportunistic pickpocketing and snatch-and-grab robberies happen often where thieves snatch handbags, shoulder bags, jewellery, mobile phones and other valuables from pedestrians.

Hotspots include busy pedestrian crossings near major shopping malls, including within the KLCC area.

Motorcyclists, and sometimes thieves in other moving vehicles, pull bags from victims. This often causes injuries.

Smash-and-grab attacks against slow-moving and parked vehicles also happen.

To avoid petty crime:

  • don't carry bags that are easy to snatch
  • walk on footpaths when you can and stay away from the curb
  • hold your bag on the opposite side to the traffic
  • when driving or parking your car, keep valuables out of sight
  • always keep vehicle windows up and doors locked, even when moving

Handbags, expensive watches, jewellery, mobile phones and cameras are tempting targets for thieves.

Many travellers have lost passports and other valuables to thieves on trains and at airports.

Carry only what you need and leave other valuables, in a secure location.

Thieves sometimes work in groups at busy shopping centres. One or more may approach you with stories of distress or warnings for your safety. When you're distracted, others steal your belongings.

Watch your personal belongings, especially:

  • in crowded areas and during holiday periods
  • when travelling on trains from the airport
  • at airports

Be wary of approaches from strangers, especially in shopping centres.

Credit card fraud

Credit card fraud is common.

Credit cards are often copied for illegal use. This can happen anywhere, from small shops to large department stores and hotels.

Always keep your credit card in sight.

Online scams

Online scams  have increased in recent years. Scammers often pretend to be people in need of financial help.

They prey on people looking for companions on online dating websites.

To protect yourself from being scammed:

  • be wary of people asking for money
  • don't send money or provide your bank details to anyone you don't know
  • be careful when sharing personal information with people you haven't met in person

Scams involving gambling are also common.

Violent crime

You could experience violent crime in Malaysia. Australians have been victims of violent crime in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and other areas of the country. You should exercise vigilance and take sensible precautions. If you're a victim of crime, inform the local police and get a police report.

Incidents of assault, sexual assault, robbery and drink spiking, including in tourist areas of Kuala Lumpur and Penang have occured. Don't leave your food or drinks unattended. Never accept food, drinks, cigarettes or gum from strangers. Stay with people you trust at parties, bars, nightclubs and taxis.

To stay safe while using taxis:

  • don't hail taxis on the street, especially after dark
  • book taxis by phone at a shopping centre taxi desk
  • check there's a licence with photo on the dashboard or seat back before getting into a taxi
  • check the driver matches the photo.

If you're alone in a taxi, sit in the back seat. Keep your belongings with you in the taxi.

If your taxi stops to pick up other passengers, get out of the taxi when it's safe to do so. Taxi drivers aren't allowed to pick up extra passengers, but it sometimes happens.

E-hailing services are available. Use the same precautions as taxis.

Cyber security 

You may be at risk of cyber-based threats during overseas travel to any country. Digital identity theft is a growing concern. Your devices and personal data can be compromised, especially if you’re connecting to Wi-Fi, using or connecting to shared or public computers, or to Bluetooth. 

Social media can also be risky in destinations where there are social or political tensions, or laws that may seem unreasonable by Australian standards. Travellers have been arrested for things they have said on social media. Don't comment on local or political events on your social media. 

More information:  

  • Cyber security when travelling overseas  

Climate and natural disasters

Malaysia experiences severe weather and natural disasters , including:

  • earthquakes
  • severe rainstorms

If there's a natural disaster:

  • secure your passport in a safe, waterproof location
  • keep in contact with your friends and family
  • monitor local media and weather reports
  • check with tour operators before travelling to affected areas

Register with the Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System to receive alerts on major disasters.

Earthquakes and tsunamis

Earthquakes can happen in Malaysia.

In 2018, a 5.2 magnitude earthquake hit Sabah. No deaths or injuries were reported. The earthquake's tremors were felt and climbing activities were suspended.

Coastal regions of the world can experience tsunamis. Malaysia and its neighbours are vulnerable to earthquakes, which make destructive tsunamis more likely.

US Tsunami Warning Centre

Severe weather

Flooding and landslides are common during the wet season which is usually from October to February.

Severe rainstorms can result in deaths and extensively damaged infrastructure.

Essential services can be interrupted.

Tours and adventure activities

The safety standards you might expect of transport and tour operators aren't always met. This includes for adventure activities, such as diving.

Operators may not provide enough safety equipment. They also may not pay attention to maintenance standards and safety precautions.

If you plan to do a tour or adventure activity:

  • check your travel insurance covers you for it
  • ask and insist on minimum safety requirements
  • use available safety equipment, such as life jackets or seatbelts

If appropriate safety equipment isn't available, use another provider.

Piracy in South-East Asian waters is an ongoing problem, especially in the:

  • Strait of Malacca
  • waters between Sabah and the southern Philippines

The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) issues weekly piracy reports.

Avoid travelling by boat in the southern Sulu Sea. This includes waters between Sabah, Malaysia and Palawan in the Philippines.

If you decide to travel by boat in these regions:

  • check IMB piracy reports
  • get local advice
  • arrange security measures

Travelling by boat

  • Going on a cruise

Travel Insurance

Get comprehensive  travel insurance  before you leave. 

Your policy needs to cover all overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation. The Australian Government won't pay for these costs.

You'll probably need a specialised insurance policy that covers travel to high-risk destinations if, despite our advice, you're travelling to the coastal region of eastern Sabah.

If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are.

If you're not insured, you may have to pay many thousands of dollars up-front for medical care.

  • what activities and care your policy covers
  • that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away

Physical and mental health

Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition. 

See your doctor or travel clinic to:

  • have a basic health check-up   
  • ask if your travel plans may affect your health
  • plan any vaccinations you need

Do this at least 8 weeks before you leave.

If you have immediate concerns for your welfare or the welfare of another Australian, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 or contact your  nearest Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate  to discuss counselling hotlines and services available in your location.

  • General health advice
  • Healthy holiday tips  (Healthdirect Australia)


Not all medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia is available in other countries. Some may even be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.

If you plan to bring medication, check if it's legal in Malaysia. Take enough legal medicine for your trip.

Strict rules control the importation of prescription and non-prescription medication. Contact the  high commission or embassy of Malaysia  to check what documentation local authorities may need you to have. Further information can be found on the  Pharmaceuticals Services website.

Carry a copy of your prescription or a letter from your doctor stating: 

  • what the medication is 
  • your required dosage 
  • that it's for personal use 

More information: 

Health risks

Smoke haze often happens from June to October, but it can happen at any time.

Check the haze situation and any health warnings the Malaysian Government issues.

When haze levels are high, authorities recommend limiting outdoor activity. Get your own medical advice.

  • World Air Quality

Insect-borne diseases

Dengue  is common, including in major urban areas. Sometimes serious outbreaks happen.

There's no vaccination or treatment available for dengue fever.

Zika virus is a risk. There's no vaccination for it.

If you're pregnant, the Australian Department of Health recommends you:

  • discuss any travel plans with your doctor
  • consider deferring non-essential travel to affected areas

The Zika virus bulletin includes advice on how to minimise Zika virus risks.

Malaria is a risk in rural areas. It's less common in urban and coastal areas. Consider taking medicine to prevent malaria.

Outbreaks of other insect-borne diseases can happen. This includes chikungunya and filariasis .

Reported cases of Japanese encephalitis have increased in recent years. Get vaccinated against Japanese encephalitis before you travel

The risk of contracting insect-borne diseases increases during the wet season.

To protect yourself from disease:

  • ensure your accommodation is insect-proof
  • always use insect repellent
  • wear long, loose, light-coloured clothing

Ministry of Health Malaysia

Rabies is a potentially fatal viral disease. It's found in dogs, monkeys, bats and other mammals.

The most recent cases were reported in Sarawak. It was transmitted through feral dog and cat bites.

Rabies can also be contracted when a rabid animal's saliva gets directly into your eyes, nose, mouth or broken skin.

Avoid direct contact with dogs and other mammals.

If a dog, monkey or other mammal bites or scratches you, use soap and water straight away to wash the wound thoroughly.

Get urgent medical attention.

Other health risks

Waterborne, foodborne, parasitic and other infectious diseases are common.

These include:

  • tuberculosis
  • hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD)

Serious outbreaks sometimes occur.

  • drink boiled water or bottled water with sealed lids
  • avoid ice cubes
  • avoid uncooked and undercooked food, such as salads
  • wash your hands often and thoroughly

Get medical attention if you suspect food poisoning, or if you have a fever or diarrhoea.

Cases of pertussis (whooping cough) have increased in Sabah since the beginning of 2023. If you're planning to travel to Sabah:

  • ensure you're immunised against pertussis
  • practice good personal hygiene including frequent hand washing, not sharing drinks or lip balm
  • keep your distance from people who appear sick
  • seek medical attention if you develop symptoms

Infectious diseases

Marine stings

Stings from jellyfish and other marine animals can be fatal.

Ask local authorities, your tour operator or hotel about:

  • swimming conditions
  • precautions to take
  • other dangers

Black henna tattoos

Avoid temporary black henna tattoos as they often contain a dye that can cause serious skin reactions.

Medical care

Medical facilities.

You can find private hospitals with international-standard facilities in major cities.

Public hospitals in major cities have a good range of medical services. However, access can be slow. Services are more limited in rural areas.

Most private hospitals need a cash deposit or a confirmation of insurance before they will admit you. They also expect immediate payment for services.

You need to pay up-front for treatment at government hospitals.

There are decompression chambers in:

Medical tourism

Medical tourism , including for cosmetic surgery, is common.

Standards at discount and uncertified medical facilities can be poor.

Serious and possibly life-threatening complications can result.

Before travelling for medical tourism:

  • research and choose medical service providers carefully
  • don't use discount or uncertified medical service providers
  • check your travel insurance covers you if things go wrong with your surgery, as most don't

You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that may appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling.

If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter . But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.

If you're suspected of using drugs before you visit Malaysia, you may be required to take a urine test on arrival. This includes if you're travelling from a country where possession and use of drugs such as cannabis is legal. 

Penalties for drug offences are severe, including drug possession and the presence of drugs in your bloodstream. Malaysia still carries the death penalty for drug trafficking.

Carrying or using drugs

Surrogacy laws

Malaysian civil law applies to everyone in Malaysia. Under this law, it's unclear if surrogacy is legal and what conditions apply.

Under sharia law, surrogacy is illegal. However, sharia law only applies to Muslims.

Surrogacy isn't practised openly in Malaysia. If you want to pursue surrogacy, it's mostly a private arrangement between you and the surrogate.

Get independent legal advice before entering into a surrogacy arrangement.

  • Going overseas for international surrogacy
  • Going overseas to adopt

Malaysia enforces some aspects of sharia law. These laws apply to all Muslims, including those from Australia.

Research laws that apply to you before you travel.

Serious crime

Crimes that may attract corporal punishment include:

  • certain drug offences
  • commercial crime


Same-sex sexual relations are illegal.

Punishment can include whipping and up to 20 years in prison for same-sex acts involving either men or women.

LGBTQIA+ travellers

Drink driving

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious offence, which can result in fines and/or a jail sentence. Authorities strictly enforce these laws. 

Australian laws

Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.

Staying within the law and respecting customs

Local customs

Malaysia is a multicultural but mostly Islamic country.

Standards of dress and behaviour are conservative in many areas. This includes at religious sites and government offices.

Always respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions.

Learn about customs at your destination. If in doubt, get advice from locals. Take care not to offend cultural or religious beliefs.

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan  is observed in Malaysia. Respect religious and cultural customs and laws at this time.

During Ramadan, eating, drinking and smoking may be illegal in public during the day. If you're not fasting, avoid these activities around people who are. Seek local advice to avoid offence.

Explore our Ramadan page to learn more, including dates for Ramadan.

Dual citizenship

Malaysia doesn't recognise dual nationality.

If you're a dual citizen, this limits the consular services we can give if you're arrested or detained.

Always travel on your Australian passport .

If Malaysian authorities find out you hold both Australian and Malaysian citizenship, you may need to renounce either your Australian or Malaysian citizenship straight away, or you may not be permitted to depart Malaysia.

Dual nationals

Visas and border measures

Every country or territory decides who can enter or leave through its borders. For specific information about the evidence you'll need to enter a foreign destination, check with the nearest embassy, consulate or immigration department of the destination you're entering. 

In most circumstances, Australian passport holders can get a 90-day tourism visa on arrival. 

Arrange a visa before you travel if you're visiting for:

  • volunteer work

Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact the nearest high commission, embassy or consulate  of Malaysia for details about visas, currency, customs and quarantine rules.

If you breach your visa conditions or overstay your visa, authorities may fine, detain or deport you.

Always check the correct dates are on the visa stamp placed in your passport.

Follow immigration rules, including your visa conditions.

Border measures

Malaysia has an auto gate facility for visitors from several countries, including Australia. The option to use the manual counter for a visa is still available. To use the auto gate facilities, Australian visitors must have a passport valid for at least 6 months and must complete and submit their  Malaysian Digital Arrival Card  (MDAC) 3 days before arriving.

The auto gate facility is unavailable for Australian passport holders with Malaysian permanent residency or a long-term pass. This auto gate facility is available at Kuala Lumpur International Airport Terminals 1 and 2. Further information can be found on the  Malaysia Digital Arrival Card  website.

Entry requirements may change at short notice. Monitor the websites of the  Malaysian Department of Immigration ,  My Safe Travel , the  Malaysian Ministry of Health , and social media for any changes. Before travel, confirm entry requirements with the  Malaysian High Commission or Consulate-General in Australia .

Staying in Malaysia

You should ensure you keep your visa up to date.

Other formalities

Foreigners need to provide biometric identification (fingerprints and/or face) on arrival.

Children aged younger than 12 years and visitors with finger disabilities don't have to do this.

Some countries including Malaysia won't let you enter unless your passport is valid for more than 6 months after you plan to leave that country. This can apply even if you're just transiting or stopping over.

Some foreign governments and airlines apply the rule inconsistently. Travellers can receive conflicting advice from different sources.

You can end up stranded if your passport is not valid for more than 6 months.

The Australian Government does not set these rules. Check your passport's expiry date before you travel. If you're not sure it'll be valid for long enough, consider getting a new passport .

Lost or stolen passport

Your passport is a valuable document. It's attractive to people who may try to use your identity to commit crimes.

Some people may try to trick you into giving them your passport. Always keep it in a safe place.

If your passport is lost or stolen, tell the Australian Government as soon as possible:

  • In Australia, contact the Australian Passport Information Service .
  • If you're overseas, contact the nearest Australian embassy or consulate .

Passport with ‘X’ gender identifier

Although Australian passports comply with international standards for sex and gender, we can’t guarantee that a passport showing 'X' in the sex field will be accepted for entry or transit by another country. Contact the nearest  embassy, high commission or consulate of your destination  before you arrive at the border to confirm if authorities will accept passports with 'X' gender markers. 

More information:   

  • LGBTQIA+ travellers 

The official currency is the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR).

When you depart, declare any MYR over MYR30,000, $US10,000 or equivalent. This covers all forms of currency, not only cash.

You can take larger amounts out of the country if you declare it when you arrive.

ATMs are widely available.

Local travel

If you travel between Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia, you need your passport. East Malaysia includes Sabah and Sarawak.

Check if your travel insurance policy covers you for any related damage and injuries if you plan to hire:

  • a motorcycle
  • any other vehicle

Driving permit

To drive in Malaysia, you need both:

  • a valid Australian driver's licence
  • an International Driving Permit (IDP)

Get your IDP before you leave Australia.

If you don't have both, you need to apply for a Malaysian licence.

Driving or riding

Road travel

Motorcyclists are a common traffic hazard. They often:

  • weave through traffic
  • drive through red lights and pedestrian crossings
  • travel on the wrong side of the road

Motorcyclists have been increasingly confronting drivers who shout, gesture or toot their horn at them. They sometimes assault drivers.

You're more likely to die in a car accident in Malaysia than in Australia.

To stay safe, drive carefully and avoid road rage.

On a motorcycle, always wear a helmet.

Some taxi drivers, especially in tourist spots or when roads are jammed, don't use their meter. This is illegal.

Malaysia's taxi regulator has an English-language hotline for reporting problems. To make a report, call 1 800 88 7723 and provide the:

  • vehicle number
  • taxi company name
  • time, date and location of the incident
  • name of the driver if known

Always ask if the driver will use the meter, or agree the fare, before you get in a taxi.

At the start of your trip, take note of the vehicle number, the taxi company name and the name of the driver.

Public transport

There have been fatal and other serious accidents involving long-distance tour buses. This often happens at night or in bad weather.

If you plan to travel by bus, choose a company with a good reputation and avoid overnight travel.

Transport and getting around safely

In recent years, several passenger boats have sunk due to overloading and poor maintenance.

Before booking tickets on a passenger ferry, speedboat or other vessel, check there is appropriate safety equipment available.

Don't travel on any vessel that looks overloaded or in poor condition.

When you board, confirm there are enough life jackets for all passengers. Know where they are.

In bad weather, wear a life jacket, even if others don't.

There is a curfew on travel by water from 6pm to 6am in the coastal districts of eastern Sabah. See ( Safety) .

Airline safety

DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.

Check Malaysia's air safety profile with the Aviation Safety Network.

National parks

National parks are protected areas, and some are home to ethnic minority groups.

Be respectful of the law and customs in these areas. If in doubt, seek local advice.

Don't remove any wildlife or plants from the park.

Before entering a park, register your plans with park officials and let someone you trust know where you're going.


Depending on what you need, contact your:

  • family and friends
  • travel agent
  • insurance provider

Call 999 or contact the Royal Malaysia Police Operations Centre on +60321 159 999 or Royal Malaysia Headquarters (Bukit Aman) +603 22662 222.

Always get a police report when you report a crime.

Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.

Consular contacts

Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.

For consular assistance, contact the Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur.

Australian High Commission, Kuala Lumpur

6 Jalan Yap Kwan Seng 50450 Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Phone: (+60 3) 2146 5555/2146 5575 Fax: (+60 3) 2141 5773 Website: malaysia.highcommission.gov.au Email: [email protected] Facebook: Australia in Malaysia X: @AusHCMalaysia

Check the High Commission website for details about opening hours and any temporary closures.

You can get limited consular help, including lodging Australian passport applications, at the following Australian consulates headed by honorary consuls:

Australian Consulate, Penang

Level 3 Jalan Macalister  10400 Penang Malaysia Phone: (+60 4) 226 8955 Fax: (+60 4) 228 3366 Email: [email protected]

Australian Consulate, Kota Kinabalu

Lot 01-05, 11th Floor Jubili Tower (Menara Jubili) 53, Jalan Gaya 88000 Kota Kinabalu Sabah Malaysia Phone: (+60 88) 267 151 Fax: (+60 88) 266 509 Email:  [email protected]

Australian Consulate, Sarawak

E39 Level 2 Taman Sri Sarawak Mall Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman 93100 Kuching Sarawak Malaysia Phone: (+60 19) 898 9787 Email: [email protected]

24-hour Consular Emergency Centre

In a consular emergency, if you can't contact an embassy, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on:

  • +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas
  • 1300 555 135 in Australia


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All you need to know before you go: Malaysia entry requirements


  • 1. Do I need a COVID-19 test to enter Malaysia?

2. What are the requirements for going to Malaysia? Do I need a COVID-19 test to enter Malaysia?

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Famous for a wide variety of things, from delicious delicacies and modern marvels, to its natural treasures and vibrant sacred sites, Malaysia is ready to welcome travelers from home and abroad.

From 1 August 2022 , all travellers can enter Malaysia regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status and do not require a pre-departure or on-arrival COVID-19 test. There are no quarantine orders related to COVID-19 enforced by the Malaysian Government upon arrival.

Visitors can download and activate the MySejahtera application before or after arrival to Malaysia to indicate their COVID-19 risk status while staying in Malaysia. The COVID-19 risk status in MySejahtera may be checked upon entering premises.

Visitors who develop COVID-19 symptoms while in Malaysia should get COVID-19 tested and if they are found to be positive, they are subject to the current protocol for positive COVID-19 cases as below.

Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 must undergo isolation via a Home Surveillance Order (HSO) for seven (7) days. Individuals can be released from isolation on the 4th, 5th or 6th day when they are asymptomatic and the result of an RTK Ag test supervised by a registered medical practitioner is negative. Discharge on the 7th day does not require any COVID-19 detection test.

Visitors are required to practice COVID-19 preventive measures while in Malaysia.

Malaysia entry requirements: Frequently asked questions

1 . do i need a covid-19 test to enter malaysia.

From 1st August 2022 , all travellers are allowed to enter Malaysia regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status and do not require a pre-departure or on-arrival COVID-19 test.

In summary, as of November 4, 2022, all travellers are allowed to enter Malaysia regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status. Based on our recent travel experience, no travel requirements are needed to enter Malaysia .

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Travel Notice Situation in Eastern Sabah

26 June 2023

Singaporeans who intend to travel to the eastern coast of Sabah should exercise vigilance and caution. They should keep themselves updated on the latest developments through official websites such as that of the Eastern Sabah Security Command ( www.facebook.com/esscomsabah ) as well as through Malaysian news outlets. Singaporeans are also advised to take all necessary precautions to ensure their personal safety, including purchasing comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage of the insurance policies. Do eRegister with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at  https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/  so that we could contact you should the need arise. Those in need of consular assistance may contact the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the 24-hour Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at:

High Commission of the Republic of Singapore in Malaysia 209 Jalan Tun Razak 50400 Kuala Lumpur Tel: +60 321 616 277 Duty phone: +60 166 610 400 Email:  [email protected]

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office Tanglin Singapore 248163 Tel: 6379 8800, 6379 8855 Email:  [email protected]

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Public Health Advisory

Travellers should refer to the ICA website for the latest information on travelling to/from or transiting through Singapore. Travellers seeking to enter Singapore should comply with prevailing Public Health (including COVID-19) as well as General Entry Requirements listed on the Singapore immigration website ( http://www.ica.gov.sg/enter-transit-depart/entering-singapore ) to ensure a smooth journey.

For information on health-related entry requirements for Malaysia, travellers may refer to Malaysia’s MySafeTravel website ( https://mysafetravel.gov.my ) for more details. Travellers can stay updated on the COVID-19 situation in Malaysia by checking the Malaysian Ministry of Health’s website ( http://covid-19.moh.gov.my ).

Entry and Exit

Visa Requirements

Singaporeans do not require a visa to enter Malaysia for up to 30 days. However, for onward travel from Malaysia to a third country, Singaporeans may be required to hold a valid visa. It is thus advisable to obtain a visa for onward travel, if necessary, before the start of your journey. Applying for a visa en-route to your destination in Malaysia or at the country you intend to visit may be difficult.

Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC)

The Immigration Department of Malaysia requires foreign nationals to complete the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC) prior to their arrival in Malaysia. However, Singapore Passport holders are exempt from this requirement at all entry points. Singaporeans who intend to enrol their fingerprints for access to automated immigration clearance via the e-gates on subsequent entry should submit the MDAC three days prior to their arrival in Malaysia.

Malaysia Automated Clearance System (MACS)

Singaporeans who have applied for use of the Malaysia Automated Clearance System (MACS) are reminded that the facility is only available at land checkpoints at Johor (Bangunan Sultan Iskandar and Kompleks Sultan Abu Bakar). MACS is meant to facilitate faster immigration clearance for exit from/entry into Johor and cannot be used as a transit facility for onward flights out of Malaysia.

General Immigration Matters

  • Singapore passports must be valid for more than 6 months at the time of entry.
  • When you enter or depart Malaysia, check that your passport is stamped before leaving the immigration booth.
  • Do not pass the immigration booths that are unattended. You should not enter or leave Malaysia without having your travel documents processed by a Malaysian immigration officer and ensuring that your passport is stamped correctly.
  • If you are entering Malaysia for internship or employment purpose, please ensure that the proper approval is obtained from the Malaysian immigration authorities prior to your arrival. Please approach the Malaysian High Commission in Singapore ( https://www.kln.gov.my/web/sgp_singapore/home ), Immigration Department of Malaysia (JIM) ( https://www.imi.gov.my ), and JIM’s Expatriate Services Division ( https://esd.imi.gov.my/portal ) for information or clarification on the relevant passes and entry requirements.
  • Please ensure your passport is in good condition. Passports with signs of damage (i.e. tear, water damage) may not be accepted for entry into Malaysia.

Loss of Passport

  • If your Singapore passport is lost or stolen when you are in Malaysia, make a police report immediately at the nearest local police station.
  • Report the loss  online via ICA e-Services immediately, if you have a valid Singpass account.
  • After reporting the loss, ICA e-Services will prompt you to apply and pay for a temporary travel document, known as a Document of Identity (DOI).
  • Once the online application is approved and ready for collection, the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru, depending on your selection, will contact you for collection.
  • If you do  not  have a valid Singpass account, you should bring the police report and two passport-sized photographs to the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru to apply, pay, and obtain the DOI.
  • The DOI, which is chargeable, is only valid for one-way travel back to Singapore.
  • As there are some administrative procedures involved in issuing a DOI, our offices may not be able to issue the document immediately and you may have to extend your stay in Malaysia.
  • For exiting Malaysia with a DOI, you may be required to apply for a special pass from the Malaysian Immigration Headquarters nearest to your point of departure.
  • You can apply for a new passport after you have returned to Singapore.

Customs Requirements

  • For a comprehensive list of dutiable and duty-free goods, as well as customs requirements, please refer to  https://www.customs.gov.my/en/tp/Pages/tp_ppel.aspx   for more information.
  • All visitors to Malaysia are required to declare dutiable goods at the customs. There are currency exchange control restrictions on bringing large amounts of Malaysian ringgit or foreign currencies into or out of the country. Please refer to  https://www.customs.gov.my/en/tp/Pages/tp_cec.aspx  for more information. 

Consular Assistance

Singaporeans who require consular assistance may contact the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru using the contact details provided on the sidebar. Singaporeans in Malaysia are strongly encouraged to e-register with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at  https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/  so that they can be contacted, should the need arise.

Singaporeans may also connect with the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur through our Telegram channel ( https://t.me/SHCKL ), Facebook Page ( https://www.facebook.com/SingaporeHighComKL ), and website ( https://www.mfa.gov.sg/kl ).

Safety and Security

Take general precautions to ensure your personal security in Malaysia such as:

  • Carry your personal belongings on the side away from the street.
  • Do not carry too much cash or display expensive jewellery or accessories (such as watches or bags) on your person.
  • Do not leave your belongings unattended when in crowded public places.
  • Ensure that you have your travel documents (i.e. passport) on your person at all times.
  • Do not leave important documents (like passport) or valuables in plain sight in your car. All loose electronic items, bags or belongings should be stowed away, out of sight.
  • Avoid isolated, unfamiliar places and places with a high known incidence of crime especially at night and if alone. Opt for well-lit and well-travelled areas which will be safer and reduce the risk of being a victim of crime.
  • There have been occasional reports of alleged scams, robbery and rape incidents involving public transport providers as well as Grab and Uber in Malaysia. Hence, it is important to exercise the usual precautions and common sense when taking public/shared transportation.
  • Exercise caution and prudence at all times and avoid large gatherings and demonstrations. Monitor media reports closely or check with the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru on the situation.

Travel Funds & Valuables:

  • In Malaysia, major credit cards such as Visa and Mastercard are accepted by local established retailers. Avoid carrying too much cash.
  • If money and valuables are stolen or lost, make a police report at the nearest police station.
  • In an emergency, you can arrange for funds to be remitted to you by your family or friends through a bank. Emergency funds can also be remitted to you via the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru; if your family or friends deposit funds with the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Consular Directorate.

Malaysia imposes severe penalties including death for possession or trafficking of even small amount of illegal drugs. Do not convey or transport any parcel, especially across the border when asked by a stranger. Should such parcels contain illegal drugs, you risk being found guilty of the possession, smuggling or trafficking of drugs. You should also never leave your belongings unattended or under the “care” of any stranger.

Additional information

Driving of Foreign-registered Vehicle in Malaysia:

  • Consider applying for the International Driving Permit (IDP) for driving in Malaysia. The IDP is recognised worldwide and is also a useful form of identification.
  • Singaporeans in Malaysia who hold a long-term stay visa for employment or residency must obtain a Malaysia driving licence if they want to drive in Malaysia. Those who possess a valid foreign driving licence may contact the Road Transport Department of Malaysia (JPJ) to seek full information on the procedures in driving licence conversion.
  • Foreigners driving vehicles in Malaysia can check and make payment for their fines issued by the Royal Malaysian Police (RMP) through the MyBayar website or mobile application. For more information, please visit the MyBayar website or RMP Traffic Department’s Facebook page.
  • The High Commission in Kuala Lumpur and the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru are able to certify true copies of the Singapore driving license. For other requirements, Singaporeans may check with JPJ directly. JPJ’s contact details are: Road Transport Department of Malaysia (JPJ) Wilayah Persekutuan, Kuala Lumpur Lot 14264, Jalan Genting Klang, 53300 Setapak. Tel : +60 3 40241200

Hospitalisation and Death:

  • In the case of an accident or medical emergency, call 999. Any injured or sick persons are usually brought to the nearest state hospital.  A medical transfer to Singapore by ambulance is possible. However, the superintending doctor in the Malaysian hospital as well as the receiving hospital in Singapore will need to consent to the transfer. The cost of medical transfer is to be borne by the individual/medical insurance. The High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru can provide a list of service providers for such medical transfers.
  • In the event of the death of a Singaporean, specific approval from the local authorities (like hospital and/or police) is required before the remains can be claimed for repatriation or cremation. An undertaker can be appointed to assist in this and to obtain all other necessary related documentation.

General Travel Advice

Overseas Travel – Be Informed & Be Safe [Updated on 5 February 2024]

Singaporeans planning overseas travel are reminded to take the necessary precautions, including being prepared to deal with accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. Singaporeans are also reminded to be familiar with your destination’s local laws, customs, and COVID-19 regulations.

Demonstrations do occur in major cities across the world. Such demonstrations can sometimes escalate into violence. It is important for Singaporeans to keep abreast of local news, avoid any protests or demonstrations and heed the advice of the local authorities.

When participating in outdoor leisure activities overseas, Singaporeans should be mindful that certain sporting activities, especially in open seas, may carry risks. Besides ensuring that one has the physical competencies and appropriate condition to undertake the activity, every effort should be made to ascertain if the trip organiser or guide is reliable and competent, and that appropriate safety and contingency plans are in place. When in doubt, Singaporeans should consult the relevant professional bodies or sporting associations for specific advice.

For those planning to travel, here are some tips:

Before travelling

  • Familiarise yourself with our network of overseas missions.
  • Purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.
  • Equip yourself with research about your destination’s entry requirements, current situation, local laws and customs.
  • eRegister with us on our website ( www.mfa.gov.sg ) so that we may reach out to you during an emergency.

While travelling

  • Always take care of your personal safety, remain vigilant and monitor local weather news, advisories, and security developments.
  • Exercise caution around large gatherings and avoid locations known for demonstrations or disturbances.
  • Be prepared for possible delays and last-minute changes in travel plans especially during unforeseen events such as natural disasters, social unrest or terror attacks.
  • Stay connected with your friends and family. Inform them of your whereabouts and provide them with your overseas contact details.
  • In the event that you require consular assistance, please contact the nearest Singapore Overseas Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

Advisory: Email Scams

There have been reports of individuals receiving scam emails/messages purportedly sent from friends in distress overseas. These emails/messages typically originate from an email address/social media known to the receiver bearing claims of the sender getting into trouble overseas and urgently requesting financial assistance. The sender would also claim to have approached a Singapore Embassy/Consulate and the local Police for help to no avail.

MFA takes the safety of all Singaporeans very seriously.  Singaporeans in distress approaching our Overseas Missions for assistance will be rendered with all necessary consular assistance.  If you receive such emails/messages from purported friends seeking funds transfers, we strongly advise you to call them first to verify the authenticity of the emails/messages before responding to their request.  It is also not advisable to give out any personal information such as NRIC/passport numbers, address, telephone number, etc.  Any form of reply, even one of non-interest, could result in more unsolicited emails.  Members of the public who suspect that they have fallen prey to such scams should report the matter to the Police immediately.  Should Singaporeans abroad require consular assistance, they can contact the nearest Singapore Overseas  Mission  or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24-hr Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is a ministry of the Government of Singapore responsible for conducting and managing diplomatic relations between Singapore and other countries and regions.

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COVID-19: travel health notice for all travellers

Malaysia travel advice

Latest updates: Editorial change

Last updated: June 5, 2024 06:24 ET

On this page

Safety and security, entry and exit requirements, laws and culture, natural disasters and climate, malaysia - exercise a high degree of caution.

Exercise a high degree of caution in Malaysia due to the threat of criminality and terrorism.

East coast of Sabah - Avoid non-essential travel

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Demonstrations in Kuala Lumpur

Due to the ongoing situation in Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, calls for protests on Fridays and weekends may continue for the duration of the conflict. Large-scale demonstrations are expected to continue.

Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. If you're in Kuala Lumpur:

  • remain vigilant at all times, especially near embassies, tourist attractions and markets
  • monitor local media for the latest information on these demonstrations
  • avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings
  • follow the advice of local authorities

East coast of Sabah

Eastern Sabah is deemed a Special Security Area by the Malaysian government. Despite increased security in the region, the risk of kidnapping and violence perpetrated by Philippine militants remains, especially in the coastal areas. Tourist resorts, restaurants and watercrafts are targeted as well as resort islands and surrounding waters, including around Sipadan. The risk increases on the water and waterfront after nightfall. Land- and water-based curfews, including a Movement Control Order, are in effect in the coastal areas of Eastern Sabah.

The Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZone) includes:

Check local media or with local police for the most recent curfew information. Follow the instructions of local authorities.

Violent crime against foreigners is not common. Petty crime, however, such as pickpocketing, purse snatching, and snatch-and-grab incidents is prevalent, especially in tourist areas and at the airport. Thieves on motorcycles frequently grab bags and other valuables from pedestrians, often resulting in injury. Women walking alone or with children are common targets.

  • Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
  • Try to limit the number of valuables you carry
  • Wear your purse facing away from the street and don’t put the strap over your shoulder or wrap it around your arm
  • Don’t leave valuables unattended in vehicles

Scam artists operate in Malaysia. Male travellers, usually alone, have been approached in public places with invitations to participate in card games offering attractive opportunities for winning large amounts of money. Victims have lost thousands of dollars before realizing they were being scammed. Companies have also been the target of scams. Scammers will often pose as representatives from phony loan companies and fabricate documents, emails and receipts to appear legitimate. They then ask for up-front payments in order to facilitate the fake loans. Don’t enter into agreements without conducting appropriate research.

There are reports of travellers encountering serious problems after responding to advertisements to do volunteer work with some adventure or environmental organizations. If you are interested in doing volunteer work abroad, conduct careful research before making a commitment.

Internet dating and other financial scams are common. Foreigners, including Canadian expatriates, may be targeted.

Credit cards and debit cards should be safeguarded at all times as theft, fraud and skimming does occur. Credit card magnetic strips have been duplicated, even in international hotels. Swiping your own card may not always be possible.

  • Pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
  • Use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
  • Avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature
  • Cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
  • Check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements

Overseas fraud

Spiked food and drinks

Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances, as the items may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.

Women’s safety

Women travelling alone may be subject to some forms of harassment and verbal abuse.

Advice for women travellers

There is a threat of terrorism. Terrorist attacks could occur at any time. Terrorist targets could include:

  • government buildings, including schools
  • places of worship
  • airports and other transportation hubs and networks
  • public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners

Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.

Stay at hotels that have robust security measures; however, keep in mind that even the most secure locations cannot be considered completely free of risk.


Large-scale demonstrations may occur. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. Demonstrations are usually accompanied by a heightened police presence and traffic delays. Law enforcement officials have deployed crowd control measures such as tear gas and water cannons, and participants and bystanders have been injured.  It is illegal for foreigners to participate in demonstrations.

  • Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities
  • Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations

Mass gatherings (large-scale events)

Public transportation

Touts at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, including at the KLIA2 terminal, attempt to get travellers to take their “taxi” into town. Several incidents of robbery and/or assault have occurred, as well as gross overcharges by such individuals. Take registered airport taxis only: before leaving the customs and arrivals hall, obtain a coupon from the airport taxi stand near the exit.

Many taxi drivers will often refuse to use the meter even though it is illegal not to use it. You should either look for another taxi or agree on a rate before entering the taxi.

If possible, book taxis by phone. Use a taxi desk or a trusted application on a smartphone, and confirm that the identity of the driver matches that of the photo in the dashboard and seatback.

Taxis are not permitted to pick up additional passengers. If they do, disembark when it is safe to do so.

Report any taxi-related problems to the SPAD (Malaysian body regulating public land transportation) at 1 800 88 7732. English-speaking operators are available. Be ready to provide details such as the vehicle number, the taxi company name as well as the time, date, locations and the nature of the incident.

Road safety

Road conditions and road safety can vary greatly throughout the country. Signage is in the local language. In some remote areas, there may be a lack of guard rails.

Be extra cautious when driving in the rain as your visibility may be impaired.

Aggressive driving habits by motorcyclists, including driving between vehicles, may pose a risk to foreign drivers who may not be accustomed to these driving techniques.

Bus accidents have occurred on long-distance tour buses, particularly at night. Choose a reputable tour company and avoid overnight routes.

Maritime travel

Boat accidents occur. Don’t board vessels that appear overloaded or unseaworthy.

Pirate attacks and armed robberies occur against ships in and around Malaysia, particularly in the Strait of Malacca and in the waters between Sabah and the southern Philippines. Mariners should take appropriate precautions.

Live piracy report - International Maritime Bureau

We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

Information about foreign domestic airlines

Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.

We have obtained the information on this page from the Malaysian authorities. It can, however, change at any time.

Verify this information with the  Foreign Representatives in Canada .

Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.

Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.

Regular Canadian passport

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the date you expect to leave Malaysia.

Passport for official travel

Different entry rules may apply.

Official travel

Passport with “X” gender identifier

While the Government of Canada issues passports with an “X” gender identifier, it cannot guarantee your entry or transit through other countries. You might face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the “X” gender identifier. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Other travel documents

Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Useful links

  • Foreign Representatives in Canada
  • Canadian passports

Tourist visa: not required for stays of up to 90 days Business visa: required Student visa: required

For stays of over 90 days, you must apply for an extension at any Malaysian Immigration office.

Immigration Department of Malaysia  - Government of Malaysia

A special visa is available to individuals who participate in the Malaysia My Second Home or Mm2h program.

Other entry requirements

From December 1, 2023, you must complete a Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC). This is an online pre-arrival form and can be filled in up to three days prior to your arrival in Malaysia.

You must present your passport and a complete MDAC for border officers to validate before leaving the immigration counter.

Malaysia Digital Arrival Card –  Immigration Department of Malaysia

Employment pass

Before you apply for an employment pass (at an immigration office or a Malaysian high commission overseas), your prospective employer must apply for approval from the Standing Committee for Malaysianisation or the Malaysian Industrial Development Authority to fill the position with an expatriate. While waiting for the approval, your employer can apply to bring you into the country on a social visit pass (for example, temporary employment). We strongly recommend against this last step: you should obtain your employment pass before arrival because it is very difficult to change visa status once in Malaysia. Foreigners are limited to three visit pass extensions, after which they must leave the country or a fine will be imposed for overstaying.

Foreigners are required to register their biometrics (fingerprints) at their port of entry. Children under 12 years of age and diplomats accredited to Malaysia are exempt from this process.

Screening measures

Malaysian authorities have implemented screening measures in response to various virus outbreaks. Travellers entering Malaysia from Canada may be subject to a body temperature check. In some cases, travellers may be isolated and treated.

Drug screening

Custom officers can subject you to a drug screening test at the point of entry to Malaysia. If you test positive for drugs, you can be arrested and prosecuted, even if the drugs were consumed prior to your arrival in the country.

  • Children and travel

Learn more about travelling with children .

Yellow fever

Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).

Relevant Travel Health Notices

  • Global Measles Notice - 13 March, 2024
  • Zika virus: Advice for travellers - 31 August, 2023
  • COVID-19 and International Travel - 13 March, 2024
  • Dengue: Advice for travellers - 6 May, 2024

This section contains information on possible health risks and restrictions regularly found or ongoing in the destination. Follow this advice to lower your risk of becoming ill while travelling. Not all risks are listed below.

Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably 6 weeks before you travel to get personalized health advice and recommendations.

Routine vaccines

Be sure that your  routine vaccinations , as per your province or territory , are up-to-date before travelling, regardless of your destination.

Some of these vaccinations include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.

Pre-travel vaccines and medications

You may be at risk for preventable diseases while travelling in this destination. Talk to a travel health professional about which medications or vaccines may be right for you, based on your destination and itinerary. 

Yellow fever   is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.

Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.

  • There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.

Country Entry Requirement*

  • Proof of vaccination is required if you are coming from or have transited through an airport of a country   where yellow fever occurs.


  • Vaccination is not recommended.
  • Discuss travel plans, activities, and destinations with a health care professional.
  • Contact a designated  Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre  well in advance of your trip to arrange for vaccination.

About Yellow Fever

Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada * It is important to note that  country entry requirements  may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest  diplomatic or consular office  of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.

There is a risk of hepatitis A in this destination. It is a disease of the liver. People can get hepatitis A if they ingest contaminated food or water, eat foods prepared by an infectious person, or if they have close physical contact (such as oral-anal sex) with an infectious person, although casual contact among people does not spread the virus.

Practise  safe food and water precautions and wash your hands often. Vaccination is recommended for all travellers to areas where hepatitis A is present.

Japanese encephalitis is a viral infection that can cause swelling of the brain.  It is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Risk is very low for most travellers. Travellers at relatively higher risk may want to consider vaccination for JE prior to travelling.

Travellers are at higher risk if they will be:

  • travelling long term (e.g. more than 30 days)
  • making multiple trips to endemic areas
  • staying for extended periods in rural areas
  • visiting an area suffering a JE outbreak
  • engaging in activities involving high contact with mosquitos (e.g., entomologists)

  Hepatitis B is a risk in every destination. It is a viral liver disease that is easily transmitted from one person to another through exposure to blood and body fluids containing the hepatitis B virus.  Travellers who may be exposed to blood or other bodily fluids (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) are at higher risk of getting hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended for all travellers. Prevent hepatitis B infection by practicing safe sex, only using new and sterile drug equipment, and only getting tattoos and piercings in settings that follow public health regulations and standards.

Malaria  is a serious and sometimes fatal disease that is caused by parasites spread through the bites of mosquitoes.   There is a risk of malaria in certain areas and/or during a certain time of year in this destination. 

Antimalarial medication may be recommended depending on your itinerary and the time of year you are travelling. Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic before travelling to discuss your options. It is recommended to do this 6 weeks before travel, however, it is still a good idea any time before leaving.    Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times:  • Cover your skin and use an approved insect repellent on uncovered skin.  • Exclude mosquitoes from your living area with screening and/or closed, well-sealed doors and windows. • Use insecticide-treated bed nets if mosquitoes cannot be excluded from your living area.  • Wear permethrin-treated clothing.    If you develop symptoms similar to malaria when you are travelling or up to a year after you return home, see a health care professional immediately. Tell them where you have been travelling or living. 

 The best way to protect yourself from seasonal influenza (flu) is to get vaccinated every year. Get the flu shot at least 2 weeks before travelling.  

 The flu occurs worldwide. 

  •  In the Northern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs from November to   April.
  •  In the Southern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs between April and   October.
  •  In the tropics, there is flu activity year round. 

The flu vaccine available in one hemisphere may only offer partial protection against the flu in the other hemisphere.

The flu virus spreads from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Clean your hands often and wear a mask if you have a fever or respiratory symptoms.

In this destination, rabies is carried by dogs and some wildlife, including bats. Rabies is a deadly disease that spreads to humans primarily through bites or scratches from an infected animal. While travelling, take precautions , including keeping your distance from animals (including free-roaming dogs), and closely supervising children.

If you are bitten or scratched by an animal while travelling, immediately wash the wound with soap and clean water and see a health care professional. Rabies treatment is often available in this destination. 

Before travel, discuss rabies vaccination with a health care professional. It may be recommended for travellers who are at high risk of exposure (e.g., occupational risk such as veterinarians and wildlife workers, children, adventure travellers and spelunkers, and others in close contact with animals). 

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious viral disease. It can spread from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

It is recommended that all eligible travellers complete a COVID-19 vaccine series along with any additional recommended doses in Canada before travelling. Evidence shows that vaccines are very effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. While vaccination provides better protection against serious illness, you may still be at risk of infection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Anyone who has not completed a vaccine series is at increased risk of being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and is at greater risk for severe disease when travelling internationally.

Before travelling, verify your destination’s COVID-19 vaccination entry/exit requirements. Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are adequately protected against COVID-19.

Safe food and water precautions

Many illnesses can be caused by eating food or drinking beverages contaminated by bacteria, parasites, toxins, or viruses, or by swimming or bathing in contaminated water.

  • Learn more about food and water precautions to take to avoid getting sick by visiting our eat and drink safely abroad page. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
  • Avoid getting water into your eyes, mouth or nose when swimming or participating in activities in freshwater (streams, canals, lakes), particularly after flooding or heavy rain. Water may look clean but could still be polluted or contaminated.
  • Avoid inhaling or swallowing water while bathing, showering, or swimming in pools or hot tubs. 

Cholera is a risk in parts of this country. Most travellers are at very low risk.

To protect against cholera, all travellers should practise safe food and water precautions .

Travellers at higher risk of getting cholera include those:

  • visiting, working or living in areas with limited access to safe food, water and proper sanitation
  • visiting areas where outbreaks are occurring

Vaccination may be recommended for high-risk travellers, and should be discussed with a health care professional.

Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.

Risk of developing travellers' diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor standards of hygiene and sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.

The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.

Typhoid   is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher among children, travellers going to rural areas, travellers visiting friends and relatives or those travelling for a long period of time.

Travellers visiting regions with a risk of typhoid, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation, should speak to a health care professional about vaccination.  

Insect bite prevention

Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. When travelling to areas where infected insects may be present:

  • Use insect repellent (bug spray) on exposed skin
  • Cover up with light-coloured, loose clothes made of tightly woven materials such as nylon or polyester
  • Minimize exposure to insects
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in buildings that are not fully enclosed

To learn more about how you can reduce your risk of infection and disease caused by bites, both at home and abroad, visit our insect bite prevention page.

Find out what types of insects are present where you’re travelling, when they’re most active, and the symptoms of the diseases they spread.

There is a risk of chikungunya in this country.  The risk may vary between regions of a country.  Chikungunya is a virus spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. Chikungunya can cause a viral disease that typically causes fever and pain in the joints. In some cases, the joint pain can be severe and last for months or years.

Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times. There is no vaccine available for chikungunya.

  • In this country,   dengue  is a risk to travellers. It is a viral disease spread to humans by mosquito bites.
  • Dengue can cause flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can lead to severe dengue, which can be fatal.
  • The level of risk of dengue changes seasonally, and varies from year to year. The level of risk also varies between regions in a country and can depend on the elevation in the region.
  • Mosquitoes carrying dengue typically bite during the daytime, particularly around sunrise and sunset.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites . There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue.

Zika virus is a risk in this country. 

Zika virus is primarily spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. It can also be sexually transmitted. Zika virus can cause serious birth defects.

During your trip:

  • Prevent mosquito bites at all times.
  • Use condoms correctly or avoid sexual contact, particularly if you are pregnant.

If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, you should discuss the potential risks of travelling to this destination with your health care provider. You may choose to avoid or postpone travel. 

For more information, see Zika virus: Pregnant or planning a pregnancy.

Animal precautions

Some infections, such as rabies and influenza, can be shared between humans and animals. Certain types of activities may increase your chance of contact with animals, such as travelling in rural or forested areas, camping, hiking, and visiting wet markets (places where live animals are slaughtered and sold) or caves.

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, livestock (pigs, cows), monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats, and to avoid eating undercooked wild game.

Closely supervise children, as they are more likely to come in contact with animals.

Person-to-person infections

Stay home if you’re sick and practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette , which includes coughing or sneezing into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand. Reduce your risk of colds, the flu and other illnesses by:

  •   washing your hands often
  • avoiding or limiting the amount of time spent in closed spaces, crowded places, or at large-scale events (concerts, sporting events, rallies)
  • avoiding close physical contact with people who may be showing symptoms of illness 

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) , HIV , and mpox are spread through blood and bodily fluids; use condoms, practise safe sex, and limit your number of sexual partners. Check with your local public health authority pre-travel to determine your eligibility for mpox vaccine.  

Tuberculosis is an infection caused by bacteria and usually affects the lungs.

For most travellers the risk of tuberculosis is low.

Travellers who may be at high risk while travelling in regions with risk of tuberculosis should discuss pre- and post-travel options with a health care professional.

High-risk travellers include those visiting or working in prisons, refugee camps, homeless shelters, or hospitals, or travellers visiting friends and relatives.

Medical services and facilities

Covid-19 - testing.

Contact local health authorities, or the nearest Government of Canada office abroad to find out where you can get a COVID-19 test.

Good health care is only available in major cities. Quality of care varies greatly throughout the country.

Payment is expected at time of service and can be made either in cash or by using a major credit card.

Decompression/hyperbaric chambers are located in Ipoh, Kuantan, Labuan Lumut and Semporna.

Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.

Travel health and safety

You must abide by local laws.

Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad .

Some aspects of Shari’a (Islamic) law have been introduced in Malaysia. Muslim travellers may be subject to these laws. In some states, such as Kelantan and Terengganu, particularly strict regulations on alcohol and public decency can be applied.

Religious preaching to Muslims, including distributing non-Islamic religious materials, is illegal.

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can face the death penalty. Possession of as little as 15 grams of some prohibited substances will be considered trafficking.

Drugs, alcohol and travel


You must carry photo identification, such as your passport. Keep a photocopy of your passport in a safe place, in case it’s lost or confiscated.

Traffic drives on the left.

Canadian driver’s licenses are valid in Malaysia and can be used locally for a period of 3 months. After this time, you can either drive with an international driving permit, or apply for a Malaysian driver’s license at a certified driving institute.

  • More about the International Driving Permit
  • Certified driving institutes

Seat belts are mandatory. Penalties for drinking and driving are severe. Convicted offenders can expect fines or imprisonment and could have their driver's licence suspended or revoked.

The use of cellular phones while driving is prohibited.

It is common to receive on the spot fines for disobeying traffic laws.

Marine transportation

Foreign vessels travelling in the waters off Sabah are subject to Malaysian law and must use routes designated by Malaysian authorities. Vessels must also fly both a Malaysian flag and the flag of their home country.

2SLGBTQI+ travellers

The laws of Malaysia prohibit sexual acts between individuals of the same sex, and transgender individuals have been arrested. LGBTQ2 travellers should carefully consider the risks of travelling to Malaysia.

Travel and your sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics

Dual citizenship

Dual citizenship is not legally recognized in Malaysia.

If local authorities consider you a citizen of Malaysia, they may refuse to grant you access to Canadian consular services. This will prevent us from providing you with those services.

Travellers with dual citizenship

International Child Abduction

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty. It can help parents with the return of children who have been removed to or retained in certain countries in violation of custody rights. It does not apply between Canada and Malaysia.

If your child was wrongfully taken to, or is being held in Malaysia by an abducting parent:

  • act as quickly as you can
  • consult a lawyer in Canada and in Malaysia to explore all the legal options for the return of your child
  • report the situation to the nearest Canadian government office abroad or to the Vulnerable Children's Consular Unit at Global Affairs Canada by calling the Emergency Watch and Response Centre

If your child was removed from a country other than Canada, consult a lawyer to determine if The Hague Convention applies.

Be aware that Canadian consular officials cannot interfere in private legal matters or in another country's judicial affairs.

  • International Child Abductions: A guide for affected parents
  • Canadian embassies and consulates by destination
  • Request emergency assistance

The majority of the population is Muslim. Dress conservatively, behave discreetly and avoid discussions on race or religion.

In 2025, the lunar month of Ramadan is expected to begin on or around February 28.

In public, between sunrise and sunset, be discreet when:

The currency is the ringgit (MYR).

Some major hotels don’t accept credit cards. ATMs are readily available across the country.

A special permit is required to bring in more than US$10,000 in the form of cash or other negotiable items. Without the permit, excess amounts are seized upon arrival. Visitors may leave the country with only the amount of currency declared on the Traveller’s Declaration Form on arrival.

Monsoon season

The rainy (or monsoon) season extends from November to March. Severe rainstorms have occasionally caused flooding and landslides, resulting in loss of life and damage to infrastructure. Seasonal flooding can hamper overland travel and reduce the provision of essential services. Roads may become impassable and bridges damaged.

Tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons and monsoons

Unrestricted burning periodically causes atmospheric pollution (haze) to rise to unhealthy levels in various parts of the country, especially from June to October. Levels change quickly and should be closely monitored.

  • Level of air pollution - Department of Environment of Malaysia
  • Recommendations on reducing health risks - Ministry of Health of Malaysia

Local services

Dial 999 for emergency assistance.

Consular assistance

For emergency consular assistance, call the High Commission of Canada in Malaysia and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.

The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.

The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.

If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.

Learn more about consular services .

Risk Levels

  take normal security precautions.

Take similar precautions to those you would take in Canada.

  Exercise a high degree of caution

There are certain safety and security concerns or the situation could change quickly. Be very cautious at all times, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.

IMPORTANT: The two levels below are official Government of Canada Travel Advisories and are issued when the safety and security of Canadians travelling or living in the country or region may be at risk.

  Avoid non-essential travel

Your safety and security could be at risk. You should think about your need to travel to this country, territory or region based on family or business requirements, knowledge of or familiarity with the region, and other factors. If you are already there, think about whether you really need to be there. If you do not need to be there, you should think about leaving.

  Avoid all travel

You should not travel to this country, territory or region. Your personal safety and security are at great risk. If you are already there, you should think about leaving if it is safe to do so.


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    Still current at: 18 June 2024 Updated: 15 December 2023 Latest update: Information on filling in the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card to enter Malaysia ('Entry requirements' page).

  18. Malaysia Travel Advice & Safety

    Safety. There is a risk of terrorism in Malaysia. Terrorism is a global threat. Attacks could be random and small-scale. Possible targets could include tourist areas and a range of other locations frequented by foreigners (see Full Advice - Safety below), including in Kuala Lumpur. Take official warnings seriously.

  19. All you need to know before you go: Malaysia entry requirements travel

    From 1 August 2022, all travellers can enter Malaysia regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status and do not require a pre-departure or on-arrival COVID-19 test. There are no quarantine orders related to COVID-19 enforced by the Malaysian Government upon arrival.

  20. Covid-19

    Foreign citizens residing in Malaysia will be eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccines for free under the National Immunisation Programme. This will include expatriates, students, foreign spouses & children, foreign workers & UNHCR card holders. You can register to receive a vaccine through the MySejahtera app. Further information is available on ...

  21. Ministry of Foreign Affairs Singapore

    High Commission of the Republic of Singapore in Malaysia 209 Jalan Tun Razak 50400 Kuala Lumpur Tel: +60 321 616 277 Duty phone: +60 166 610 400 Email: [email protected]. Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office Tanglin Singapore 248163 Tel: 6379 8800, 6379 8855 Email: [email protected]. Show More.

  22. Travel advice and advisories for Malaysia

    Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country's entry rules. Regular Canadian passport. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the date you expect to leave Malaysia. Passport for official travel. Different entry rules may apply. Official travel. Passport with "X" gender identifier