Malaysia has very specific requirements when it comes to who they allow to enter the country, and for how long. Some foreign nationals can visit Malaysia for short-term periods without having to obtain a visa, whereas others are required to apply for a Malaysia tourist visa before they can travel there.
Additionally, a Malaysia tourist visa is not all the permission you need to actually enter the country. You will also need a Short Term Social Visit Pass, which an Immigration Officer will grant you at the Malaysian point of entry.
This article will detail the Malaysia tourist visa: what it is, who needs it, and how to apply for one.
What is a Malaysia Tourist Visa?
A Malaysia tourist visa is:
- A Single Entry Visa, which means you can only use it to enter the country once. Multiple-entry visas, which have a longer validity, are not usually issued for tourism purposes.
- A Visa Without Reference, which means you don’t need to receive permission from the Immigration Department of Malaysia to receive it. It is the Malasyian Representative Office Abroad (Embassy/Consulate) in which you apply who issues it.
- A pre-entry requirement into the country, which means it only allows you to travel to Malaysia. It does not guarantee that you will actually enter Malaysia.
The decision on whether or not you can enter Malaysia or not is up to an Immigration Officer at the point of entry where you arrive. Immigration Officers decide on whether a foreign national is fit to enter Malaysia, regardless of whether they need a visa and their purpose of travel.
If they decide that you are fit to enter, you will receive a Pass (ie. a stamp on your passport), depending on why you want to enter. For tourism, the type of Malaysia Pass you receive is a Short Term Social Visit Pass.
Who Needs a Malaysia Tourist Visa?
You only need to apply for a Malaysian tourist visa if you are from one of the following countries:
|Burkina Faso||Burundi||Cameroon||Central African Republic|
|China||Colombia||Comoros||Congo Democratic Republic|
|Congo Republic||Côte D’Ivoire||Djibouti||Equatorial Guinea|
|Montenegro||Sri Lanka||United Nations (Laissez Passer||Western Sahara|
Nationals of other countries do not have to apply for a visa if they are only entering Malaysia for a short period of time and for tourism purposes. Some countries can stay in Malaysia without a visa for longer than others.
How to Apply for a Malaysia Tourist Visa?
Depending on your nationality, there are two ways through which you can apply for a Malaysian tourist visa:
- In person, at a Malasyian Representative Office Abroad (Embassy/Consulate) or an authorized Visa Application Center.
- Online, for nationals of specific countries only.
Applying for a Malaysia tourist visa in person
To apply for a Malaysian tourist visa, you should go through these steps:
- Find out where to apply.
- Download the Malaysian tourist visa application form.
- Collect the required documents for a tourist visa to Malaysia.
- Submit the application to the embassy/consulate.
- Wait for processing.
Find out where to apply
To apply in person, you must first find the nearest Malaysian Embassy or Consulate to you, or a Visa Application Center which can submit the application on your behalf.
Download the Malaysian tourist visa application form
Next, download the Malaysian Visa application form from the website of the Immigration Department of Malaysia. You must complete it electronically (you need access to a computer and an Adobe Reader or equivalent) and print two copies, which you must sign.
Collect the required documents for a tourist visa to Malaysia
Every Malaysian Embassy/consulate has different requirements regarding the documents you must submit. However, the required documents for a Malaysian tourist visa are the following:
- Two copies of the completed Malaysia Visa Application Form.
- Your passport, which is valid for at least another six months from the date you intent to enter Malaysia.
- Two passport-size pictures of yourself which are in line with Malaysia photo requirements. Make sure to follow the picture guidelines as per their requirements because even an incorrect picture format could cost you your visa.
- A complete flight itinerary, which includes a return flight ticket.
- Proof of accommodation in Malaysia, such as a hotel booking.
- Letter of invitation from your host/sponsor in Malaysia (if you have one). If you’ll be staying with them, they must confirm this in the letter and it will count as proof of accommodation.
- No Objection Letter from your employer or educational institution.
- Proof of sufficient funds to cover the duration of your stay.
- Proof of paid Malaysian visa fee. Some Embassies/Consulates require the fee to be paid in cash, while others will only accept payments made through a bank transaction.
- Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate if you are from a country who is in the risk of Yellow Fever transmission or recently traveled/transited there for longer than 12 hours.
Submit the application to the embassy/consulate
After collecting the required documents, you should submit them, along with the application form, to the Malaysian Embassy/Consulate. You will also have to leave your passport, since if your application is approved, the visa officers will affix your visa to it.
Wait for processing
The Malaysian tourist visa processing time depends on the specific Embassy/Consulate. It usually takes about a week, on average.
If your application is approved, you must collect your passport with the visa on it, which allows you to travel to Malaysia.
Applying for a Malaysia tourist visa online
You can apply for a Malaysia tourist visa online only if you are from one of the following countries:
- Sri Lanka
Malaysia has two online visa application facilities which allow nationals from the countries above to receive their Malaysia visa faster:
- Malaysia eVisa (Electronic Visa), which is valid for three months and allows the holder to stay in Malaysia for a maximum of 30 days.
- Malaysia eNTRI (Electronic Travel Registration and Information), which is only available for Chinese and Indian nationals. An eNRTI allows the holder to stay in Malaysia for up to 15 days.
If you are eligible to apply for a Malaysia tourist visa online, you will receive a printable visa, which you must show to the Immigration Officers upon arrival to the Malaysian point of entry.
After Arriving at the Malaysian Port of Entry
After you arrive in Malaysia, you must go through border control, where the Immigration Officers decide whether to grant you entry. You must show them the following documents:
- Your passport and visa.
- Your return flight ticket.
- Proof you have sufficient funds.
- Your completed Arrival/Departure Card, which you can get after arriving at the point of entry.
- Proof of accommodation.
- Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate (if applicable)
- Letter of invitation from host (if applicable).
If you are allowed to enter, you will receive a Short Term Social Visit Pass. Every foreign national who enters Malaysia must have a Pass, regardless of whether or not they need a visa.
The Pass indicates the number of days you are allowed to stay. You must not overstay your Pass under any circumstances.
How Long is a Malaysia Tourist Visa Valid?
A Malaysian tourist visa (eVisa included) is valid for a maximum of 3 months and for a single entry. However, you can only stay in Malaysia for a maximum of 30 days. It is the immigration Officer at the Malaysian point of entry who decides how long you can stay.
An eNTRI visa is only valid for 15 days, and you cannot apply for another eNTRI unless three months have passed since your current one.
You cannot extend a Malaysian tourist visa. If you need to stay in Malaysia longer, you can apply for a multiple entry visa, which is issued for business and governmental purposes.
Malaysia Tourist Visa On Arrival
If you are an Indian or Chinese national, you can get a Malaysian Visa On Arrival at the point of entry, provided that you meet the following conditions:
- You’re coming directly from Indonesia, Singapore or Thailand and
- You hold a valid visa for one of those countries, and
- You have a return/onward flight ticket dated within the next 7 days, and
- You have at least USD 1000 per person.