Travel to Malaysia

Flying to Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur is a major hub for flights between Europe, Asia and Australia. Malaysia Airlines ( offers an extensive network of domestic and international flights, including direct routes between Europe and Malaysian Borneo. 

For cheap fares to Singapore and cities around South-East Asia, try budget carriers Air Asia (, Jetstar ( and Firefly ( Malindo Air ( offers flights within Malaysia as well as in Asia and Australia. 

Because of the varied climatic conditions around the country, there is no nationwide high season, but flights can be expensive over Christmas and New Year, and during the Malaysian school holidays in May, June and August.

Major airports are: Kuala Lumpur International Airport and Pengang International Airport.

Flight times:

From London - 12 hours 30 minutes; New York - 21 hours (including stopover).

Departure tax:

Included in the air fare.

Airport guides

Airport Code: KUL. Location: Kuala Lumpur International Airport is situated 55km (34 miles) south of Kuala Lumpur. Money: There are bureaux de change and ATMs dotted throughout KLIA and klia2. CIMB Bank is located at the... Read more

Airport Code: PEN. Location: Penang International Airport is located 16km (9.9 miles) south of Penang's capital city George Town... Money: A bank, ATMs and a foreign exchange service are available. Read more

Travel by rail

Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTM Berhad) (tel: +60 3 2267 1200; runs Malaysia's train services. From Kuala Lumpur, there are direct services south to Singapore and north to Bangkok in Thailand, via Butterworth (the main train station for Penang).

To traverse the peninsula in style, ride the luxurious Eastern and Oriental Express ( The train completes the journey between Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok in three or four days, with detours and tours along the way.

Rail passes:

KTM Rail Pass: Available to foreign tourists (except Singaporeans) and valid for five, 10 or 15 days. Passes permit unlimited travel on Intercity train services on the KTM network and into Singapore. Supplements apply for sleeping berths and on night trains. You can buy passes online (, through travel agencies and at major railway stations, including the stations in Kuala Lumpur, Butterworth, Johor Bahru and Singapore.

Driving to Malaysia

Malaysia is one of the few places in South-East Asia where visitors are happy to drive. Roads are well maintained, routes are clearly signposted, and for the most part, local drivers follow traffic rules. Road tolls are levied on all highways but smaller roads are toll-free.

Note that unsurfaced roads are common on Borneo and in the highlands of peninsular Malaysia. These require a 4-wheel drive, and can be impassable to any vehicle during the rainy season.

Getting to Malaysia by boat

Main ports: George Town (Penang) (, Port Klang (, Northport ( and Westport (for Kuala Lumpur) ( In East Malaysia (for Sabah and Sarawak), they are Bintulu (, Kota Kinabalu (, Kuching (, Lahad Datu (, Rajang (, Sandakan ( and Tawau (

Limbongan Maju (tel: +60 7 827 8001; operates a ferry between Tanjung Belungkor and Changi Point in Singapore.

Cruise ships:

Various cruise ships visit Malaysia's ports.

Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.