Malaysia Travel Warning
Country-specific safety instructions
There is still a risk of terrorist attacks in Malaysia according to physicscat. Due to the arrests of numerous terrorist suspects in recent months and the throwing of hand grenades at a bar in a suburb of Kuala Lumpur at the end of June 2016, there are currently increasing indications of the risk of possible further attacks on entertainment venues in Kuala Lumpur and Penang.
As a result of the penetration of Philippine rebels into the eastern districts of the state of Sabah on Borneo, the Malaysian government established an Eastern Sabah Safety Zone (ESSZONE) in the area in 2013. Against the background of the continuing unstable situation in the southern Philippines, the situation in the “ESSZONE” is currently not assessed as calm and unstable. This zone includes the villages of Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Tawau, Kunak and Semporna as well as those off the coast In the security zone, an increased number of police and military personnel is to be expected. Instructions from the security forces should be followed.
Since August 2014, the Malaysian government has imposed a temporary nocturnal driving ban “curfew” (curfew) from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. for ships and boats in the territorial waters bordering the ESSZONE. It affects all watercraft that do not have a specific exemption from the Authorities. This “curfew” concerns an area extending from the coastline to three miles in the open sea. It has already been extended several times.
In November 2013, a foreign tourist was shot dead on the island of Pom-Pom / Sabah and his wife was kidnapped. At the beginning of April 2014 another tourist was kidnapped from Semporna. In early May 2014, a Chinese businessman was kidnapped. On July 12, 2014, the island of Mabul, popular with tourists, was attacked by eight armed attackers in camouflage suits. In an exchange of fire, one policeman was shot and another policeman was kidnapped. Since then there have been repeated reports of kidnappings in the region.
There are indications that there is an acute risk to the tourist destinations there and also in the vicinity of the ESSZONE. Despite the nocturnal driving ban in the coastal waters and significantly increased security measures since August 2014, the risk of attacks and kidnappings remains significant, especially near the coast and on the islands. The Federal Foreign Office therefore advises against traveling to the east of the Sabah province and the neighboring islands as well as traveling in the sea area between the southern Philippines and Sabah. Please note the external link, opens in a new window Travel and safety information Philippines.
Malaysia is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country with strong Islamic influences. You should take this into account and respect local customs (e.g. clothing, behavior).
There are regular reports of theft on the street and in shopping malls. Again and again there is pickpocketing by passing motorcyclists. Violence is also used. Serious injuries have occurred several times in these cases, especially if the bag was not let go or was carried diagonally over the shoulder and arm and facing the street. Valuables that are visible in cars often lead to burglary. Visitors, especially to sights, should be attentive and behave appropriately.
When staying in hostels or low-budget hotels, especially in the heavily frequented districts of Kuala Lumpur, Bukit Bintang and Chinatown, you should also be particularly careful. German tourists have repeatedly been victims of robbery and theft within and in the immediate vicinity of these buildings. Trick scams, particularly those involving games of chance, are frequently reported. This mainly affects single travelers who are targeted in tourist locations and lured into private apartments under a pretext. Administration of drugs and so-called knockout drops in bars are also crimes that can affect tourists.
Internet scams are common from Malaysia. It is not uncommon for this to include criminal offenses that are based on pseudo personal relationships initiated on the Internet.
Shipping / piracy
Caution is advised when using ferry and excursion boats (also inland). Travelers should inform themselves about safety and rescue facilities on board and the seaworthiness of the ship. Piracy continues to pose a threat to shipping in the waters around Malaysia (especially the Strait of Malacca).
Best travel time
Tropical, humid and hot with extremely high daytime temperatures. The nights can get relatively chilly. The humidity is 95% and more. In the east of the peninsula as well as in Sabah and Sarawak, the main rainy season lasts from November to February, on the west coast it rains in August and September. Pleasant water temperatures of 26 ° C. The best time to travel to Malaysia falls in summer. However, there are regional differences.