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Malaysia Travel 101

MALAYSIA | Thursday, 28 April 2011 | Views [4875]

Malaysia is a truly amazing country to visit. With unique places that will suit even the most particular traveler – you can be assured that there is always something for everyone in Malaysia. After all, where else in the world can you find multi-cultural, multi-racial people living together in peaceful cohabitation? Malaysia is ‘Truly Asia’ indeed. 

With that said however, here are some interesting details about the country that you should take into consideration before you visit. Our friends Eric Woo and Ian Goh from Waahhh.com share their expertise.

Communication

Most Malaysians speak English. In fact, Malaysia has one of the highest levels of proficiency in the language within the southeastern Asia region. Unless you plan to escape the tourist trail and visit rural areas or experience a homestay, there is no need to worry if you don’t speak Malay or any of the local dialects. However, a simple pocket English-Malay translation guide can come in handy (or download our Malay language guide).

Transportation

Commuting within the city like Kuala Lumpur (KL) is convenient with Light Railway Transport (LRT) or public buses like RapidKL. If you want to travel to places which are not reachable by LRT, taking taxi is the fastest and most convenient mode of transport. However, be sure that the taxi you are hopping in uses a meter, or ask for the taxi fare before starting your journey. If you plan to travel around the country, express bus or inter-city coach services are available at Puduraya Bus Terminal (assuming you are in KL). Make sure you only buy tickets at designated sales counters to avoid paying extra to ticket touts. An alternate way is to travel via low cost airlines like Air Asia or FireFly.

Religion

Islam is the official religion of Malaysia. As such, you will find many Islamic-influenced architecture as well as infrastructure all across the country – making Malaysia an ideal place to visit for Muslim tourists. However, non-Muslim Malaysians can freely practice and express their faith (Buddhism and Hinduism being the other two major religions), which results in a colorful potpourri of cultures as well as festivals.

Food

Malaysia is an undisputed food haven. You can find all sorts of cuisine to suit your palate - may it be the local Malay, Chinese or Indian food or international cuisine, not mentioning the abundance of fast food outlets and the exotic treats.  You are bound not to have an issue with finding food that is both tantalizing that doesn’t burn through your wallet. Plus, some eateries are open 24 hours a day (just in case you’re worried you’ll wake up in the middle of the night hungry).

Tip: Halal means that the food is pork-free and is suitable for consumption by those of Muslim faith. Also note that during the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims are expected to fast during daytime.

Emergency Number

In case of emergency, you can dial 999 from any public phone; the worldwide emergency number for GSM mobile phones, 112 will be redirected to the 999 call center.

Weather

Weather in Malaysia is fairly hot and humid (sometimes wet) throughout the year. Temperature ranges from 21° to 34° Celsius. If it’s rainy season, make sure you pack an umbrella or a raincoat.

Drugs

Drug offenses in Malaysia can be severe. Trafficking (defined as the possession of a certain quantity of drugs) incurs a mandatory death penalty, possession incurs a custodial sentence and possible whipping.

Related Articles:

5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to Malaysia

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Tags: asia, diversity, food, homestay, kuala lumpur, malaysia, religion, southeast asia, transportation, travel

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