Welcome to Malaysia! There are many things to love about Malaysia. Its diverse food cultures that reflect the influence of Malay, Chinese, Indian, and other ethnic cuisines. Malaysian cuisine is known for its unique blend of flavors, spices, and textures.
Malaysia has a well-developed network of highways, railways, and ports. The North-South Expressway, for example, is one of the longest highways in Southeast Asia and connects major cities from the Thai border in the north to Johor Bahru and the Singaporean border in the south.
Compared to many other countries, living and spending in Malaysia can be relatively affordable. Generally, if you eat local food at hawker stalls or street vendors, the prices can be quite cheap, usually ranging from a few Malaysian Ringgits (MYR) to around MYR10-15 per meal. However, if you choose to dine at high-end restaurants, the prices can be significantly higher.
You can find a variety of products at different price points, from luxury brands in huge shopping malls such as Pavilion and Suria KLCC to budget-friendly items at Sungai Wang Plaza, or Taman Connaught or O.U.G. night markets. The bustling Petaling Street market in Chinatown is a popular tourist attraction, but you may need to bargain for lower price.
Entry Requirements to Malaysia
Covid-19 restrictions for entering Malaysia have been lifted just like many of other countries which have reopened their borders for tourists after about 2 years of tourism inactivity. Every visitor has to bring with them the required travel documents to ensure entrance. There are a few safety measures in place and procedures to handle Covid-19 positive patients [More].
Mobile internet data and call plans in Malaysia are rather affordable, and they can be as cheap as RM15 for 6GB of data. You can buy them at Malaysia’s International Airports where there are mobile network provider stores with staff who can help you setup if you encounter issues. There are a couple of methods to top-up if your data runs out during your trip such as using the app, buying credits from a convenience store and others. Prepaid Mobile data plan works, etc.
Grab App e-hailing service: RM52 – RM71 | KLIA Ekspress (Train): KLIA to KL Sentral at RM49.50 | Bus: Price of KLIA to KL Sentral from RM12 | Metered Taxi: Price is around RM53 from KLIA to KLCC | Airport Limo: Price of trip from KLIA to KLCC is around RM80
Electronic payment system on a smartphone app is widely used in Malaysia for cashless transactions such as paying for your groceries, restaurant dining, parking, bill, petrol, E-hailing rides, food delivery etc. Except for e-wallet that is linked to your bank account such as MAE (Maybank), you have to first load your e-wallet with money via credit/ debit card or online banking transfer/ DuitNow. The most commonly used e-wallet apps are Touch ‘n Go, GrabPay, Boost, Maybank E-Wallet (MAE), favePAY.
Cash and credit card are still widely accepted, so it shouldn’t be a big problem if you choose not to install a Malaysian eWallet app, as you can always use cash/ credit card when you dine in or shop.
Grab App – e-Hailing, Food Delivery, eWallet, etc.
If you are a tourist who is going to stay in Malaysia short term, the most useful App to install would be Grab as it offers most of the services you need. You can set up your Grab wallet instantly by entering your full name, email address, phone number and MyKad/Passport number. To top up, you can use a Credit or Debit card, and via online banking. GrabPay can be used to book/ pay for your e-hailing rides, your bills at the stores/ restaurants as well as for your GrabFood orders delivery, Intercity Bus & Ferry tickets, Travel Insurance (underwritten by Chubb), Attractions (Klook), Hotels (Booking.com and Agoda), online shopping, etc.
While it is fairly easy to get a taxi from the hotel, having an e-hailing app would provide more options for transport.
You can book a ride using the Grab app. First Enter your location and where you would like to go, then select the type of ride at different rates.
Touch n GO
Website: touchngo.com.my | Where to Buy Card
You have to use the physical Touch ‘n GO card (not Touch ‘n GO eWallet) for Tolls (driving) and public transport – LRT, MRT, Monorail, KTM Komuter, KLIA Express (min balance of RM20) and certain bus lines
Where to buy Touch n Go card at KL Airport
KLIA: Self-Service Kiosk (Level 2, near carpark, on the way to Sama Sama Hotel) | Watsons’s (Lot F67a, First Floor, Persiaran Komersial Klia)
KLIA 2: Watson’s (L2-8 and L3-15) | KK Mart (Unit L2m-20), Self-Service Kiosk (SSK)
Source. Touch n Go Self Service Kiosk
Foreigners can install and register the TnG eWallet app with either a Malaysian or Singaporean mobile number (Source). You can first a a new local mobile plan first.
Users can link their Touch ‘n Go Cards to their eWallets. With PayDirect™ activated, the card can then be used (at selected highway toll plazas or car parks), then the linked Touch ‘n Go eWallet balance will be deducted.
To use the TnG eWallet you have to reload the credit, minimum reload amount is RM10.
If you are driving, then you need the Smart parking payment App. Touch n’ Go eWallet can pay for street parking in certain areas.
Parking prices range from 40sen/ hour in Kuala Langat area, to RM1/ hour in some parts of Kuala Lumpur. It is a more reliable app but it does not cover all locations in Malaysia.
Coverage: DBKL, Majlis Perbandaran Kota Bharu, Majlis Bandaraya Subang Jaya (which includes Puchong, Seri Kembangan, Serdang), Perbadanan Putrajaya, Majlis Perbandaran Kuala Langat, Majlis Bandaraya Kuala Terengganu, Majlis Daerah Machang, Majlis Bandaraya Shah Alam, Majlis Bandaraya Petaling Jaya, Majlis Bandaraya Seremban