Immigration and Customs

Visitors entering Malaysia must possess the following documents:

  • A valid Passport or Travel Document
  • Fulfill Visa Requirement (for foreigners if applicable)
  • Arrival/Departure Card 

Under a special arrangement during the establishment of Malaysia, all visitors to Sabah must fill in the immigration papers before entering the state. 

Citizens from the Commonwealth countries, Ireland, Switzerland and the Netherlands do not need a visa to enter Malaysia. Other countries like Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Tunisia and USA do not need visas if visit is not more than 3 months. Citizens from Israel are not permitted to visit Malaysia while communist countries citizens are granted visas for 7-14 days.


Every person entering Malaysia must have a valid passport or an internationally recognized Travel Document. Those who do not have a passport or a travel document must apply for a document in lieu of a passport at any Malaysian Representative Office abroad. Travel document holders of Certificate of Identity, Laiseser Passer, Titre de Voyage or Certificate of Permanent Residence must ensure to return to their respective country before the expiry date of travel which is valid for 6 months.


Visa applications must be made at any nearest Malaysian Representative Office Abroad. Applications can also be made online through I-Visa System (Applicable for tourist from India and China only).

1. Application for a Visa Without Reference

Documents required for the application of a visa without reference (approval of visa is given by High Commission of Malaysia) are:

  • Original passport
  • Two (2) photocopies of the applicant’s passport
  • Two (2) photocopies of the visa application form (Form IMM.47)
  • Two (2) passport size photographs of the applicant
  • Original and two (2) photocopies of the ticket (confirmed and returned ticket)
  • Bank statement / traveller's cheque
  • Invitation letter (if any)
  • Payment of visa fee

Note:  Visa Without Reference is required for the purpose of a social visit.

2. Application for a Visa With Reference

Documents which are required for the application of a visa with reference (visa will issued after the application is being referred and approved by the Department of Immigration Malaysia / Other Agencies of Authority):

  • Original approval letter from the Immigration Department of Malaysia/other authority agencies
  • Original passport
  • Two (2) photocopies of the applicant’s passport
  • Two (2) photocopies of visa application form (Form IMM.47)
  • Two (2) passport size photograph of applicant
  • Original and two (2) photocopies of an air ticket
  • Payment of visa fee

Note: Visa With Reference is required for students, those seeking employment, dependants and professionals on a visit pass.

Countries that require Visa

Afghanistan (Visa with reference) Angola,  Bhutan , Burkina Faso , Burundi , Central African Republic, China , Colombia , Comoros , Congo Democratic Republic , Congo Republic , Cote d'ivoire, Djibouti , Equatorial Guinea , Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea-Bissau,  Hong Kong (C/I or D/I), India, Liberia, Mali, Myanmar (ordinary passport) ,  Nepal , Niger, Rwanda, Serbia & Montenegro, Taiwan – 15 days without visa, United Nations (Laissez Passer), Western Sahara.

Commonwealth Countries that require Visa

Bangladesh, Cameroon, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka

Countries That Require Visa for Stays Exceeding 3 Months

Albania , Algeria, Argentina , Australia, Austria (Vienna) , Bahrain, Belgium , Bosnia-Herzegovina , Brazil, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iran, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyz Republic, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Peru, Poland, Qatar, Romania, St Marino, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Yemen.

Countries That Require Visa for Stays Exceeding 1 Month

Armenia, Azerbaijan, Barbados, Belarus, Benin, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Gabon, Georgia, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea Republic, Haiti, Iraq, Honduras, Hong Kong SAR, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macao SAR, Macedonia, Palestine, Somalia, Madagascar, Moldova, Mauritania, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Nicaragua, North Korea, North Yemen, Panama, Paraguay, Russia, Sao Tome & Principe, Senegal, Slovenia, Sudan, Surinam, Tajikistan, Togo, Ukraine, Upper, Volta, Uzbekistan, Vatican City, Venezuela, Zaire, Zimbabwe

Countries That Require Visa For Stays Exceeding 14 Days

Libya, Macao (Travel Permit/Portugal CI), Sierra Leone, South Yemen


No visa is required for U.S.A. citizens visiting Malaysia for social, business or academic purposes (except for employment).

No visa is required for stays of less than one month for nationals of all ASEAN countries except Myanmar nationals. For a stay exceeding one month, a visa will be required, except for Brunei and Singapore nationals.

For nationals of Israel, visas are required and permission must be granted from Ministry Of Home Affairs.

For nationals of Republic of Serbia and Republic of Montenegro, visas are required without permission granted from Ministry Of Home Affairs.

Nationals of countries other than those stated above (with the exception of Israel) are allowed to enter Malaysia without a visa for a visit not exceeding one month.

Types of Visa

The Malaysian Government issues Three (3) types of visas to foreign nationals:

  1. Single Entry Visa

    This is issued to foreign nationals who require a visa to enter Malaysia mainly for a social visit. It is normally valid for a single entry and for a period of three (3) months from the date of issue.

  2. Multiple Entry Visa

    This is issued to foreign nationals who require a visa to enter Malaysia mainly for business or government-to-government matters. It is normally valid for a period within three (3) months to twelve (12) months from the date of issue. Citizens of India and the People's Republic of China who wish to enter Malaysia for the purpose of a Social Visit are eligible to apply for the Multiple Entry Visa.The validity of the Multiple Entry Visa is one (1) year. Each entry is for 30 days only and the extension of stay is not allowed.

  3. Transit Visa

    This is issued to foreign nationals who require a visa to enter Malaysia on transit to other countries. Foreign nationals on transit without leaving the airport premises and who continue their journey to the next destination with the same flight do not require a transit visa.


This card is obtainable at any entry point, at Malaysian Representative Offices abroad, on international flights or from travel agencies and you are required to complete the form and present it together with your passport or travel documents to the Immigration officer on duty.

For more information, visit:

Immigration Department of Malaysia

Ministry of Foreign Affairs