What To Know Before Arriving In Penang / Malaysia
7 degrees north of Equator, positioned south of Thailand and north
CLIMATE: Dry seasons from May to September; Wet seasons raining
October and February months.
TEMPERATURE : Between 22 - 34 degrees Celsius.
TIME ZONE Difference : +8 GMT
TELEPHONE CODE : + 604
Several international banks operate in Penang. Availability of
foreign currency exchange transactions.
Foreign currencies can be exchanged through licensed money changers
in shopping malls, city areas and at reputed hotels.
Ringgit Malaysia ( RM )
LANGUAGE : Bahasa Malaysia (Malay) is the national language. Good
English and Mandarin language is widely spoken other than the local
Chinese and Tamil dialects.
Most visitors, for business or pleasure, do not require a
visa to enter Malaysia.
A national passport or other internationally recognised travel
documents are required for entry to Penang, Malaysia.
MALAYSIAN LAW : Death penalty for drug trafficking. Prohibited items
include pornography, flick knives, broadcast receivers, goods from
Israel and other dangerous animals. Visit www.customs.gov.my for
more information, if you have any concern.
HEALTH WARNINGS :
Visitors should only stick to bottled water, as tap water is not
distilled for drinking in Malaysia.
Dengue fever may be a minor risk because of the rain. Hawker and street
foods are, on the whole, clean and safe to eat.
However, those with sensitive stomachs may find themselves afflicted
with the odd case of diarrhoea.
CULTURAL SENSITIVITIES :
As Malaysia is predominantly a Muslim country, dress conservatively,
especially when visiting national monuments and places of worship.
Bikinis are only permissible on the beach.
DANGER AND HAZARDS :
It is always advisable for travellers to keep an eye on Credit cards
when transaction is being processed, in case there is any credit
Motorbikes may be a hazard at times on the island and visitors
should always be wary of them while out walking.
ELECTRICITY AND VOLTAGE : 240 Volts AC at 50 cycles per
Prepaid cards and IDD calls may be dialled directly using area code
or through telephone operator if assistance is required.
Internet services are broadly available, with free WIFI at the
airport and many of the fast food outlets.
KEY ANNUAL EVENTS :
The Penang International Dragon Boat Festival: (June) the island's
most exciting annual sporting event.
The Penang Food Festival: (August) held yearly, and visitors can
sample the best of world-renowned Penang local cuisine, while also
learning how to cook it themselves. Pesta Pulau Pinang: (November/ December) an annual trade fair and
exhibition featuring a carnival, live performances and cultural