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Travel Notice Situation in Eastern Sabah

29 July 2019
Singaporeans who intend to travel to the eastern coast of Sabah should exercise vigilance and caution.

They should keep themselves updated on the latest developments through official websites such as that of the Eastern Sabah Security Command (http://esscom.gov.my) as well as through Malaysian news outlets. Singaporeans are also advised to take all necessary precautions to ensure their personal safety, including purchasing comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage of the insurance policies. Do eRegister with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/ so that we could contact you should the need arise. Those in need of consular assistance may contact the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the 24-hour Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at:


High Commission of the Republic of Singapore in Malaysia
209 Jalan Tun Razak
50400 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +60 321 616 277
Duty phone: +60 166 610 400
Email: singhc_kul@mfa.sg


Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office
Singapore 248163
Tel: 6379 8800, 6379 8855
Email: mfa_duty_officer@mfa.gov.sg

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Ministry of Health (MOH) Public Health Advisory

Please refer to the MOH COVID-19 website and SafeTravel website for updates on the latest precautionary measures implemented to further reduce the risk of importation of COVID-19 to Singapore. These include travel advisories and further restrictions on travellers coming into Singapore. 

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Singaporeans can generally visit Malaysia without a visa. As visa requirements can change at short notice, we advise you to contact your travel agency, or the High Commission of Malaysia in Singapore for up-to-date information.

Singaporeans who have applied for Malaysia Automated Clearance System (MACS) are reminded that the facility is only available at land checkpoints at Johor (Bangunan Sultan Iskandar and Kompleks Sultan Abu Bakar). MACS is meant to facilitate faster immigration clearance for exit/entry into Johor and cannot be used as a transit facility for onward flights out of Malaysia.   

Passport Matters:

  1. Singapore passports must be valid for at least 6 months at the time of entry.
  2. When you enter or depart Malaysia, check that your passport is stamped before leaving the immigration booth.  This ensures you are not breaching Malaysia’s immigration laws.
  3. Do not pass the immigration booths that are unattended. You should not enter or leave Malaysia without having your travel documents processed by a Malaysian immigration officer and ensuring that your passport is stamped correctly.
  4. Singapore nationals do not require a visa to enter Malaysia for up to 30 days.  However, for onward travel from Malaysia to a 3rd country, travellers may require to hold a valid visa.  It is thus advisable to obtain a visa for onward travel, if necessary, before the start of your journey. Applying for a visa en-route to your destination at the borders of Malaysia and the country you intend to visit may be difficult.
  5. If you are entering Malaysia for internship or employment purpose, please ensure that the proper approval is obtained from the Malaysian immigration authorities.  

Loss of Passport:

  1. If your Singapore passport is lost or stolen when you are in Malaysia, make a police report immediately at the nearest local police station.
  2. Bring the police report and 2 passport-sized photographs to the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General of The Republic of Singapore in Johor Bahru to obtain a replacement travel document.
  3. A temporary travel document, which is chargeable, will be issued to enable your return to Singapore. This travel document is only valid for one-way travel.  
  4. As there are some administrative procedures involved in issuing a temporary travel document, our offices may not be able to issue the document immediately and you may have to extend your stay in Malaysia.
  5. For exiting Malaysia with a temporary travel document, you may be required to apply for a special pass from the Malaysian Immigration Headquarters in Putrajaya.
  6. You can apply for a new passport after you have returned to Singapore.

Customs Requirement:

For a comprehensive list of dutiable and duty-free goods, as well as customs requirements, please refer to www.customs.gov.my/en/tp/Pages/tp_tg.aspx for more information.

All visitors to Malaysia are required to declare dutiable goods at the customs. There is a restriction on bringing large amounts of Malaysian ringgit into or out of the country.  Under the Bank Negara Regulations, individuals are only allowed to carry the equivalent of up to USD 10,000.  For amounts exceeding USD 10,000, there is a need to declare at the customs.



Singaporeans are currently not allowed to enter Malaysia on social visit passes. For those with other types of visit passes, please approach the Malaysian High Commission in Singapore (https://www.kln.gov.my/web/sgp_singapore/home/), Immigration Department of Malaysia (JIM) (https://www.imi.gov.my/), JIM’s My Travel Pass webpage (https://mtp.imi.gov.my) and JIM’s Expatriate Services Division (https://esd.imi.gov.my/portal) for information or clarifications on the entry restrictions.

Malaysia has implemented the National Recovery Plan (NRP). Different states/territories are under different phases of the NRP. Please refer to official government and news websites for the latest restrictions under the NRP. We urge all Singaporeans to abide by local laws and restrictions; and to adhere strictly to the Standard Operating Procedures.

Singaporeans in Malaysia are allowed to leave the country during this period. However, you should be prepared for some travel inconveniences. Due to inter-state and/or inter-district travel restrictions, depending on your locality, please check with your nearest police station whether a police permit is required and obtain one if you are required to do so. This includes those travelling to KLIA/klia2 and Subang Airport, as well as those returning to Singapore via the land checkpoints.

Please note that all travellers, including Singaporeans and Singaporean PRs, with travel history to Malaysia (all states), in the past 14 days, including transit, will be required to serve a 14-day Stay-Home Notice (SHN) at SHN-Dedicated Facilities (SDF) in Singapore. All travellers will have to bear the cost of their SDF stay.

In addition, all travellers arriving in Singapore via air or sea ports, including Singaporeans and Singaporean PRs, are required to obtain a negative COVID-19 PCR swab test result taken within 48 hours before departure. Singaporean PRs entering Singapore via the land checkpoints are also required to obtain a negative COVID-19 PCR swab test result taken within 48 hours before departure. Singaporeans entering Singapore via the land checkpoints will not be required to take a COVID-19 PCR test before departing for Singapore. However, they will still be subject to prevailing border measures, i.e., an on-arrival PCR test and a 10-day SHN, a COVID-19 PCR test administered at the end of the SHN period, and self-administered Antigen Rapid Tests on Days 3 and 7 of their arrival in Singapore. Please refer to https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/sc-pr/requirements-and-process for the latest pre-arrival requirements for returning Singaporeans and Singaporean PRs. Singaporeans and Singapore PRs may also refer to the online self-help tool (https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/sc-pr/online-assistant) to find out the latest travel health measures. Currently, there are no concessions for travellers who are vaccinated against COVID-19 or those who have recovered from it.

The Bangunan Sultan Iskandar Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex at Johor Bahru ceases operations daily from 7 pm to 7 am, and all pedestrians and vehicles (including commercial/cargo vehicles) will not be able to undertake cross-border travel via the Causeway during that period. The Second Link is open for 24 hours for heavy vehicles (cargo) only. Operating hours for other vehicle types are from 8 am to 12 am.

If your social visit pass has expired, before you can leave Malaysia, you must report to JIM to obtain a Special Pass. If your social visit pass has expired and you have valid reasons and need to continue to stay on in Malaysia, you should regularise your stay and apply for the relevant long term passes as soon as possible, or risk being subjected to penalties for immigration offences. Please make an appointment online with the Immigration Department of Malaysia (http://sto.imi.gov.my). No walk-in services are allowed. 

Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL)

The Government of Singapore regularly reviews its border measures to manage the risk of importation and onward local transmission of COVID-19 from travellers. Given the resurgence of COVID-19 cases worldwide, the Government of Singapore has suspended the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) arrangement with Malaysia from Monday, 1 February 2021, 0001hrs, until further notice. Malaysia has also suspended the RGL arrangement from 13 May 2021.

Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA)

Singapore and Malaysia have launched a Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) to allow work and business-related travel between the two countries via the land border crossings at the Johor-Singapore Causeway and Malaysia-Singapore Second Link. Applications have been open since 10 August 2020. The PCA will allow citizens and Permanent Residents of Singapore and Malaysia, who hold long-term immigration passes for business and work purposes in the other country, to enter that country for work. Citizens of Singapore and Malaysia, who are Permanent Residents of, and working in Malaysia and Singapore respectively, can also apply for the PCA to enter their country of work. After at least three consecutive months in their country of work, they may return to their home country for a short-term home leave, and thereafter re-enter their country of work to continue work for at least another three consecutive months. From 13 May 2021, travellers entering Malaysia to work under the PCA will be subject to prevailing health protocols, and must serve a compulsory 14-day quarantine at designated facilities in Malaysia. For more information, please refer to the Immigration Department of Malaysia’s website https://mtp.imi.gov.my and the Singapore-Malaysia PCA section of the SafeTravel Portal https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/pca/overview.

Death and Critical Illness Emergency Visit (DCEV) Scheme

Under the Death and Critical Illness Emergency Visit (DCEV) Scheme, Singapore Citizens, Singapore PRs, and holders of Singapore’s Long Term Pass who are immediate family members of the deceased/critically ill patient (i.e. parents, children, close siblings and legal guardian) may apply to enter Malaysia.

Please note that DCEV is only applicable for travel via air (KLIA & klia2) and land border crossings between Malaysia and Singapore, and is limited to emergency visits in Peninsular Malaysia. Only a maximum of two visitors per case are allowed. The applicant must be between 21 to 60 years’ old and priority for entry will be given to spouse or child(ren) / parents to the deceased/critically ill patient.

For more information, please refer to the Immigration Department of Malaysia’s My Travel Pass website, https://mtp.imi.gov.my/myTravelPass/main?termConditionDCEVor enquire online here.

Information on the COVID-19 Situation in Malaysia

Singaporeans can find Frequently Asked Questions/Answers on the COVID-19 situation in Malaysia at the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur’s telegram channel https://t.me/SHCKL and the Singapore High Commission’s website https://www.mfa.gov.sg/kl. For further information, including travel restrictions/advisories imposed by Malaysia, please visit the website of Malaysia’s Ministry of Health http://covid-19.moh.gov.my/.

Singaporeans who require consular assistance may contact the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru using the contact details provided below. Singaporeans in Malaysia are strongly encouraged to e-register with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/ so that they can be contacted, should the need arise.


Take general precautions to ensure your personal security in Malaysia such as:

  1. Carry your personal belongings on the side away from the street.
  2. Do not carry too much cash or display expensive jewellery or accessories (such as watches or bags) on your person.
  3. Do not leave your belongings unattended when in crowded public places.
  4. Do not carry your travel documents (i.e. passport) on your person unless necessary and ensure it is secured in a safe place.
  5. Do not leave important documents (like passport) or valuables in plain sight in your car. All loose electronic items, bags or belongings should be stowed away, out of sight.
  6. Avoid isolated, unfamiliar places and places with a high known incidence of crime especially at night and if alone. Opt for well-lit and well-travelled areas which will be safer and reduce the risk of being a victim of crime.
  7. There have been occasional reports of alleged scams, robbery and rape incidents involving public transport providers as well as Grab and Uber in Malaysia. Hence, it is important to exercise the usual precautions and common sense when taking public/shared transportation.
  8. Exercise caution and prudence at all times and avoid large gatherings and demonstrations. Monitor media reports closely or check with the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru on the situation.

Travel Funds & Valuables:

  1. In Malaysia, major credit cards such as Visa and Mastercard are accepted by local established retailers. Avoid carrying too much cash.
  2. If money and valuables are stolen or lost, make a police report at the nearest police station.
  3. In an emergency, you can arrange for funds to be remitted to you by your family or friends through a bank.  Emergency funds can also be remitted to you via the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or Consulate-General in Johor Bahru; if your family or friends deposit funds with the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Consular Directorate.

Malaysia imposes severe penalties including death for possession or trafficking of even small amount of illegal drugs.  Do not convey or transport any parcel, especially across the border when asked by a stranger. Should such parcels contain illegal drugs, you risk being found guilty of the possession, smuggling or trafficking of drugs. You should also never leave your belongings unattended or under the “care” of any stranger.

Driving of Foreign-registered Vehicle in Malaysia:

  1. Consider applying for the International Driving Permit (IDP) for driving in Malaysia. The IDP is recognised worldwide and is also a useful form of identification.
  2. Singaporeans in Malaysia who hold a long-term stay visa for employment or residency must obtain a Malaysia driving licence if they want to drive in Malaysia. Those who possess a valid foreign driving licence may contact the Road Transport Department of Malaysia (JPJ) to seek full information on the procedures in driving licence conversion.
  3. The High Commission in Kuala Lumpur and the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru are able to certify the Singapore driving license as a true copy. For other requirements, Singaporeans may check with JPJ directly. JPJ’s contact details are: Road Transport Department of Malaysia (JPJ) Wilayah Persekutuan, Kuala Lumpur Lot 14264, Jalan Genting Klang, 53300 Setapak.  Tel : +60 3 40241200

Hospitalisation and Death:

  1. In the case of an accident or medical emergency, call 999. Any injured or sick persons are usually brought to the nearest state hospital.  A medical transfer to Singapore by ambulance is possible. However, the superintending doctor in the Malaysian hospital as well as the receiving hospital in Singapore will need to consent to the transfer. The cost of medical transfer is to be borne by the individual/medical insurance. The High Commission in Kuala Lumpur or the Consulate-General in Johor Bahru can provide a list of service providers for such medical transfers.
  2. In the event of the death of a Singaporean, specific approval from the local authorities (like hospital and/or police) is required before the remains can be claimed for repatriation or cremation. An undertaker can be appointed to assist in this and to obtain all other necessary related documentation

Overseas Travel – Be Informed & Be Safe [Updated on 14 October 2021]

Singaporeans planning overseas travel are reminded to take the necessary precautions, including being prepared to deal with accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. Singaporeans are also reminded to be familiar with your destination’s local laws, customs, and COVID-19 restrictions, including immigration procedures and entry requirements.

Demonstrations do occur in major cities across the world. Such demonstrations can sometimes escalate into violence. It is important for Singaporeans to keep abreast of local news, avoid any protests or demonstrations and heed the advice of the local authorities.

When participating in outdoor leisure activities overseas, Singaporeans should be mindful that certain sporting activities, especially in open seas, may carry risks. Besides ensuring that one has the physical competencies and appropriate condition to undertake the activity, every effort should be made to ascertain if the trip organiser or guide is reliable and competent, and that appropriate safety and contingency plans are in place. When in doubt, Singaporeans should consult the relevant professional bodies or sporting associations for specific advice.

For those planning to travel, here are some tips:

Before travelling

  • Familiarise yourself with our network of overseas missions.
  • Purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.
  • Equip yourself with research about your destination’s entry requirements, current situation, local laws and customs.
  • eRegister with us on our website (www.mfa.gov.sg) so that we may reach out to you during an emergency.

While travelling

  • Always take care of your personal safety, remain vigilant and monitor local weather news, advisories, and security developments.
  • Exercise caution around large gatherings and avoid locations known for demonstrations or disturbances.
  • Be prepared for possible delays and last-minute changes in travel plans especially during unforeseen events such as natural disasters, social unrests or terror attacks.
  • Stay connected with your friends and family. Inform them of your whereabouts and provide them with your overseas contact details.
  • In the event that you require consular assistance, please contact the nearest Singapore Overseas Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

Advisory: Email Scams

There have been reports of individuals receiving scam emails/messages purportedly sent from friends in distress overseas.  These emails/messages typically originate from an email address/social media known to the receiver bearing claims of the sender getting into trouble overseas and urgently requesting financial assistance.  The sender would also claim to have approached a Singapore Embassy/Consulate and the local Police for help to no avail.

MFA takes the safety of all Singaporeans very seriously.  Singaporeans in distress approaching our Overseas Missions for assistance will be rendered with all necessary consular assistance.  If you receive such emails/messages from purported friends seeking funds transfers, we strongly advise you to call them first to verify the authenticity of the emails/messages before responding to their request.  It is also not advisable to give out any personal information such as NRIC/passport nos., address, telephone number, etc.  Any form of reply, even one of non-interest, could result in more unsolicited emails.  Members of the public who suspect that they have fallen prey to such scams should report the matter to the Police immediately.  Should Singaporeans abroad require consular assistance, they can contact the nearest Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24-hr Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

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