How To Apply For Visa

Immigration requirements

If you are planning to visit Sarawak in the near future, a travel document or a valid passport is a must. A visa is required and you may need to fill in an arrival or departure card.

Even if you are a resident of West Malaysia, you still need to fill up a form for entering Sarawak. The passport should have a validity of at least 6 months from the date you visit Sarawak.

Passport or Travel Document

You must have a passport of the country of which you are a citizen. As soon as you arrive in Kuching; visas are issued which are usually valid for 30 days, extendable for 60 days at the Department of Immigration in Kuching city. However, if you are a citizen of the Netherlands, Switzerland or Ireland, then you do not require a visa. In case you are visiting Malaysia for less than 3 months and is a citizen of USA, Tunisia, Sweden, South Korea, Norway, Luxembourg, Japan, Italy, Iceland, Germany, France, Finland, Denmark, Belgium and Austria, then you can visit Sarawak without a visa. The Malaysian government does not allow citizens of Israel to visit the country while citizens of communist countries are granted visas for only 7 to 14 days.

Visa Requirement

Before travelling to Malaysia, you must obtain a valid visa which can be obtained from the Representative Office in Malaysia in respective countries. A visa is required as it gives you an approval and indicates that you have the required permission to enter Malaysia. The issue of visa however, does not mean that you are guaranteed permission to enter the country, the final authority lies with the Immigration Officer at the point of entry.

Once at the entry point you need to fill up and submit the Arrival/Departure card which can be obtained at the entry point or at the Representative Offices of Malaysia in your country, travel agencies or international flights. The passport along with the filled up Arrival/Departure card needs to be presented to the Immigration Officer. The officer approves the documents and issues an appropriate pass after which you can start off with your visit.

Countries with partial visa abolition agreement with Malaysia

Citizens of some countries do not require visa to enter Malaysia for social or business visits. However these visas are available for only three months. For any other visit a normal visa is a must. These countries include the USA, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Sweden, Spain, South Korea, Peru, Norway, Luxembourg, Krygyzstan, Japan, Iceland, Italy, Hungary, Germany, France, Finland, Denmark, Czech & Slovak, Bosania Herzegovina, Belgium, Austria, Algeria, Albania, Argentina Egypt, Turkey, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Jordan, Oman, UAE, Morocco and Bahrain.

Citizens of Syria, Libya, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan don’t require visa for entering Malaysia for social or business purpose. However, these visas are valid only for 14 days. Citizens of certain Baltic, East European and Commonwealth of Independent Countries can visit Malaysia for social or business purposes for a period of 30 days without a visa. These countries include Yeloruss, Ukraine, Tadjikistan, Russia, Rumania, Moldovia, Lithuania, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Georgia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Atzerbaijan and Armenia.

Types of Visa

The Government of Malaysia issues three types visas:

1) Single entry visa:
Single entry visa is valid for 3 months and is issued for a business or social visit.

2) Multiple entry visa:
Multiple entry visa is valid for 3-12 months and is usually issued to business executives or government officials of foreign countries.

3) Transit visa:
Transit visa is issued when you have to enter Malaysia as a transit point on your way to another country.

You can apply for a visa at the nearest Malaysia mission in your country. In case there is no Malaysia mission in your country, you can apply for a visa in the British embassy or high commission. You need to carry your passport, three copies of form IM.47, three passport sized photographs, either onward or return journey travelling ticket and proof that you have enough funds.

So make sure all your travel documents are in order before you apply for a visa and make your journey to Sarawak an exciting and enjoyable experience, an experience worth remembering for a lifetime.

For more information about visas and travel documents, please visit

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