Malaysia Country Info – The compact Malaysia Guide

Country info FAQ

What is Malaysia and where is Malaysia located?

Malaysia is state in Southeast Asia. The territory of Malaysia is divided into two parts. two parts. One part of Malaysia -West Malaysia- is situated on the Malaysian Peninsula and thus borders on the south of Thailand. At the tip of the peninsula is Singapore. East Malaysia, on the other hand, forms part of the island of Borneo.

Frequently called Malaysia is also divided into three regions: West Coast, East Coast and East Malaysia. subdivided.

Malaysia is a federal constitutional monarchy. The ruler is changed every 5 years.

What language is spoken in Malaysia or what is the national language of Malaysia?

The official language of Malaysia is Bahasa Malaysia (Malay). Due to its long colonial history, English is still the second language for many Malaysians. English is still the second language for many Malaysians. Due to the numerous immigrants various Chinese and Indian languages are also very widespread. In addition, there are other indigenous languages, especially on Borneo. In total, Malaysia has around 140 languages that are actively spoken. spoken.

How much time difference does Malaysia have and what time is it now in Malaysia?

Malaysia has no time change between summer and Winter time. 

The time difference from Germany to Malaysia is therefore 6 hours according to German summer time and 7 hours according to  German winter time. 

Malaysia is in the time zone UTC +8. Germany lies in winter in the time zone UTC +1 in summer in the time zone UTC +2.

When it is is 12:00 noon in Germany according to German winter time , it is already 19:00 in the evening in Malaysia. 

When it is German summer time 12:00 noon in Germany, it is already 18:00 in the evening in Malaysia. 

What is the capital of Malaysia?

The capital of Malaysia is Kuala Lumpur. The seat of government, however, was moved to the planned city of Putrajaya in 1999.

What currency does Malaysia have?

The currency of Malaysia is called Malaysian ringgit (MYR, RM, $, M$). One ringgit is divided into 100 sen.  One euro is about 4.6 ringgit.

What do you call the people of Malaysia?

The inhabitants of Malaysia are called Malaysians (the Malaysian, the Malaysian)

Flagge von Malaysia
Die Flagge von Malaysia

Safety in Malaysia:

How safe is Malaysia?

Malaysia has been the subject of occasional in the media occasionally in recent years because of terrorist attacks. Alone to deduce that the whole country is in danger would be a bit hasty in view of such in view of such incidents around the world.

When talking about security in Malaysia, one has to distinguish between Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia.

There is a travel warning for Sabah, as terrorists are increasingly targeting tourists there. Sabah is the eastern part of East Malaysia. The travel warning does not apply to Peninsular Malaysia. Peninsula.

The app. Geosure rates the Malaysian Peninsula with scores between 54-58 (0 safe, 100 dead, 34 Germany). However, it is interesting to look at the different subdivisions of this scores. Womens Savety, i.e. safety from violence against women is with a value of 40 almost identical to the values in Germany (34-39). (34-39). The areas in which Malaysia generally scores particularly poorly are (85) is safety for LGBTQ people, as homosexual acts are considered a crime in Malaysia is considered a criminal offence. The score of 60 in the area of medical care and and health is poor in Malaysia compared to other scores in the country. country. Here, the still high prevalence of tropical infectious diseases may be an infectious diseases is likely to be an important component of the score.

Data for East Malaysia are not available in App Geosure at this time.

What to keep in mind when to Malaysia is that Malaysia is a Muslim and extremely prudish country. Therefore, public displays of affection should be avoided. in public. In some parks, excessive kissing can even result in a fine. Pornography and sex toys can theoretically lead to problems if they are imported. Prostitution should be given a wide berth in Malaysia. Homosexual acts are generally punishable in Malaysia.

Our subjective assessment from our time in Peninsular Malaysia is that we did not feel at no time, even at night, felt uncomfortable in the slightest. On the Malaysians (regardless of ethnicity) are extremely friendly, polite and helpful. and helpful. Apart from overpriced taxis and incorrect information in Airbnb, we never had the feeling that people were trying to rip us off or take or otherwise taking advantage of us. Accordingly, we found Malaysia to be a a very pleasant travel destination.  Nevertheless you should of course always look where you are going and also keep an eye on the cultural common sense in view of the cultural peculiarities.

As a further source for an assessment of the danger situation in Malaysia we would like to refer to the information of the German Foreign Office on Malaysia. The Foreign Office has not necessarily reputation in the circles of frequent travellers, as many of the warnings are exaggerated warnings are perceived as exaggerated scaremongering. However, we would like to remind you that the advice must apply equally to business travellers and Gucci strappy sandal tourists. tourists alike. In the following, we summarise the highlights of the travel warnings. but we still recommend that you check the current status on the website of the on the website of the German Foreign Office before you travel. Don’t let this make you crazy either but keep in mind what can go wrong in order to avoid unnecessary dangers or to react or to be able to react correctly if necessary.

→ Travel advice of the foreign office

Following we have compiled the highlights of the trip and safety tips for you (as of 12/2019)

  • Terrorism: in Sabah (East Malaysia) extremists are deliberately kidnapping tourists. There have already been fatalities. A military security zone has been set up. Here there is there is also a night-time ban on ships. The German Foreign Office urgently advises against travelling the corresponding region urgently.
  • Piracy: There are repeated attacks in the Strait of Malacca. It is advised against individual travel by boat.
  • Demonstrations: Should always be avoided, as in any country. Foreigners are explicitly Participation in demonstrations is explicitly prohibited.
  • Thefts: Here, one should mainly warn against handbag thefts. The most common scam is for scooter drivers to snatch bags off their or steal mobile phones from their hands. Therefore, always carry your bag off the road at all times. By the way, the scam is now widespread worldwide.  
  • Trick scams: Trick scams occasionally occur in the context of gambling or online scams on dating websites.
  • K.O. drops: There have been cases of tourists being robbed with K.O. drops in bars. were robbed.
  • LGBTQ: Homosexual acts are punishable. 
  • Jurisdiction: For Muslims – including foreign Muslims, Sharia law applies in the family jurisdiction. Drug trafficking is punishable by death.
  • Natural disasters: In the context of the monsoon from November to February, especially in the east of the Malaysian peninsula, it comes to the east of the Malaysian peninsula. Malaysia lies in a seismically active zone. There can be earthquakes and tsunamis.
  • Jellyfish: In the waters around the popular holiday island of Langkawi, especially in the north-west, jellyfish can occur. holiday island of Langkawi, the very dangerous (and potentially deadly) dangerous (and potentially deadly) box jellyfish even in shallow water.
  • Infectious diseases: Many infectious diseases are transmitted by mosquitoes. Both during the day mosquito repellent is recommended both during the day and at night. Especially rural regions are more affected. In addition, pay attention to food hygiene (cook it, peal it or forget it) and do not drink tap water (unless it is well boiled).  

Flights and travel to Malaysia

Malaysia has several international airports. The most significant airport in Malaysia is that of Kuala Lumpur. There are other major airports in Kota Kinabalu, Penang, Langkawi, Kuching and Johor Baru. In addition, Malaysia has a large network of regional airports.

The country’s main airline is Malaysia Airlines. The Asian budget airline AirAsia is also based in Kuala Lumpur.

Direct flights to Malaysia are rather the exception. The flying time from Frankfurt to Kuala Lumpur is about 14.5 h. Flights with a stop and a travel time of about of about 19h are available on selected dates from 230€.

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The entry to Peninsular Malaysia is also possible overland from Thailand and Singapore. Entry by land is also possible in East Malaysia. In addition, there is also the possibility of entering by ferry at the port, especially at the Thai border.

The Entry is possible with a German passport for a tourist stay of up to 90 days without a visa. The passport should be valid for 6 months longer than the planned duration of stay and be be in good condition. Badly damaged passports are often not accepted. accepted.

On arrival entry, you usually get the 90-day residence permit by default. by default. As everywhere else, make sure that a date and a length of stay are entered in the entry stamp. There is a separate visa for East Malaysia, which is also valid for 90 days.

On entry, index fingerprints are recorded as standard. An onward travel ticket and proof of accommodation are also occasionally required. For one-way flights to Malaysia, airlines usually ask for an onward ticket at check-in. If you have not yet organised your onward journey, an onward ticket is recommended. If you are travelling from a yellow fever area, you may be asked to provide proof of a yellow fever vaccination.

Climate & Weather in Malaysia

In Malaysia, the climate is hot and humid all year round. climate. Thanks to its proximity to the equator, the temperatures vary only minimally throughout the year. Depending on the region, there is more or less pronounced rainy and dry seasons. In general, however, rain should should always be planned for in Malaysia.

The average daily temperature in Malaysia is around 30° with some regional variations. Long clothes on bus rides, in the plane or in the sometimes insanely cold air-conditioned cold air-conditioned shopping centres.

The night temperature also drops in Malaysia seldom falls below 20°C

On the Malaysian peninsula it is monsoon season between November and February is monsoon season. Many tourist areas and hotels in the east of Peninsular Malaysia are closed. Also in the north of Borneo, heavy rainfall is to be expected. In the northwest of Borneo it rains most between June and November. However, in Borneo it rains rainfall is very heavy all year round.

In the north of the Malaysian peninsula – which includes Langkawi – is in the dry season during the European winter months. dry season.

Sights in Malaysia

Malaysia is a great country for. cultural travellers, city breakers, nature lovers but also beach lovers and divers.  

Cities

  • Kuala Lumpur: metropolis and capital with skyscrapers and shopping centres
  • Melaka: port and industrial city on the Straits of Malacca with a historic city centre.
  • Ipoh:  Sleepy retirement town in the interior. Here the shops close at 16:00.
  • Penang / George Town: Metropolis and historic old town, partly on an island
  • Putrajaya: Seat of government near Kuala Lumpur
  • Kuantan: beaches, waterfalls, batik and shopping
  • Kuala Selangor: small town near the Sky Mirror with lots of fireflies
  • Kuching: Economic hub in East Malaysia
  • Miri: Tourism hub in Sarawak surrounded by five national parks
  • Kota Kinabalu: Tourism hub of Sabah

More destinations

  • Langkawi: Holiday island on the border with Thailand with geoparks
  • Cameron Highlands: Tea-growing area in the mountains of Malaysia
  • Taman Negara: National Park in the heart of Peninsular Malaysia
  • The numerous islands on the east coast of Malaysia with their dream beaches

Transport in Malaysia

Malaysia is very easy to travel around. The well-developed passenger transport is very convenient on many very comfortable on many routes. We recommend looking up connections in the app Rome2Rio. app. You can then check timetables on the app easybook. app, which you can also use to buy tickets.

Rental cars in Malaysia

In Malaysia, there is left-hand traffic. Malaysians don’t really follow traffic rules. When in doubt they honk their horns and everyone gets upset. However, the road network in Malaysia is very well developed. Trunk roads are usually subject to tolls. The toll is paid directly at the toll booths. On rural roads, you should beware of unmarked speed speed limit hills and sometimes also potholes. potholes. There is almost always traffic jam in all larger towns.

You can rent a car very cheaply depending on the depending on the season and region.

In Malaysia, the International Driving Licence in conjunction with the German Driving Licence is valid for tourist stays.

On the smaller islands, such as Langkawi, scooters are recommended instead of a rental car. These can be be easily rented on the spot.  

Trains in Malaysia

There is a very and comfortable train line that runs along the entire west coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Peninsula. Tickets can be purchased online or at the stations. be purchased.

Taxi in Malaysia

Taxis in Malaysia mostly no taxi meter. Prices should be negotiated before starting the journey to avoid unpleasant surprises later. Cheaper and more comfortable with the App Grab. The ride service provider also offers payment services and, in some regions, food delivery. in some regions. Grab is very widespread in Malaysia and works very well, except during peak very well except during peak hours.  

Buses and public transport in Malaysia

Malaysia has an excellent bus network. As described at the beginning, buses can be booked in advance via the app easybook. Kuala Lumpur also has a very good public transport network. → Kuala Lumpur

Flights within Malaysia

Malaysia has a very good and in some cases shockingly cheap network of domestic flights that can be used to reach reach most regions of the country.

Hotels in Malaysia

Malaysia has hotels of all varieties at very reasonable prices. You can also find many good deals on Airbnb now. However, we advise to always read the complete descriptions. By far not all hotels have WLAN, hot water or air conditioning. Hostel beds start at around 6€. With a bit of luck, you can get a room for two people for less than 20€.

Food in Malaysia

The food in Malaysia is characterised by the three largest population groups. Accordingly, there are traditional traditional Malaysian cuisine with vegetables, rice and a lot of fish, which is often very spicy. There is also typical Indian cuisine and typical Chinese cuisine. Arabic cuisine is now also widespread. In addition, you can also find typical western cuisine in tourist areas. with pasta, pizza and burgers.

The prices for food often vary widely depending on the region and restaurant. In Malaysian street kitchens two adults often get their fill for less than four euros. In the city centre of Kuala Lumpur, however, you should calculate 7-10€ per person for a meal in a restaurant. A small cost trap in restaurants and bars is that taxes (6%) and service charge (10%). (6%) and service charge (10%) are sometimes not included in the prices. However, in restaurants as a matter of principle no tip is expected. expected.  

Malaysia is also relatively easy for vegetarians and vegans to travel around, as due to the Buddhist parts of the population, at least the concept is mostly known. However, you should explicitly inform the staff if you do not want to eat animals.  Even in vegetarian-sounding dishes, small fish or shrimps are often found as a condiment.  In addition, one should explicitly point out that oyster sauce and fish sauces are also not eaten.

Raw, unpeeled fruits and vegetables should not be consumed in Malaysia. Tap water is also not suitable for consumption.

Summary: Is a trip to Malaysia worth it?

We love Malaysia. So it’s a bit difficult for us to write an objective conclusion here.

Let us therefore start with things we absolutely do not like. Malaysia has alitter problem and people have no awareness of it. It is absolutely normal to find large amounts of plastic and debris in the middle of cities or even in nature. There are many stray animals. Especially dogs have a very low status in the country and are considered unclean. For palm oil, rainforest is cleared on a grand scale. Especially in Borneo, this destroys the natural rainforest of many animal species, such as the Oran Utan. But the situation is improving somewhat.

The rubbish has become a little less in recent years and plastic bags are gradually being banned. If you google, you will find some very large animal welfare organisations that also do large-scale neutering, among other things. With regard to the rainforest, there is now at least some international pressure.

What we love about Malaysia, however, is that it is an extremely multicultural country, with diverse populations living in harmony with each other as much as possible. This multiculturalism is evident in many areas of life – be it the often really delicious multinational cuisine or the fact that you sometimes walk around on the street between women in burqas and women in miniskirts. Malaysia manages the gap between history and modern times. The historical monuments are preserved with all due care. At the same time, you can pay in most shops not only with a credit card, but also with dozens of other digital payment services. Malaysia has a great nature. Even if the country is not really careful with this treasure, the beaches, forests, reefs and other landscapes are still really magnificent.

Furthermore, Malaysia is really easy to travel around. The price level is comparatively low, most people speak at least basic English, there is a very good transport system and the food is good.

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