About Malaysia

Excerpts from www.tourism.gov.my

Malaysia

The Federation of Malaysia comprises of Peninsular Malaysia, and the states of Sabah and Sarawak on the island of Borneo. Situated between 2º and 7º to the North of the Equator line, Peninsular Malaysia is separated from Sabah and Sarawak by the South China Sea. In the northern part of Peninsular Malaysia lies Thailand, and in the south, neighbouring Singapore. Sabah and Sarawak are bounded by Indonesia while Sarawak also shares borders with Brunei.
 
Area : 329,758 square km  |  Population: 28.3 million   |  Capital city:  Kuala Lumpur 

People & Language

Ethnic Malays comprise 57% of the population, while Chinese, Indian and other races make up the rest of the country's population. While Malay is the national language and many ethnic groups also converse in their various languages and dialects, English Language is also widely spoken. Islam is the official religion of the country, but other religions such as Buddhism and Christianity are widely and freely practised.

Currency

The monetary unit of the country is Ringgit Malaysia and is written as RM or MYR. The exchange rate is valued at USD1 = RM4.44. Notes are available in RM1, RM5, RM10, RM20, RM50, and RM100 denominations, while coins are issued in 5, 10, 20 and 50 sen (cents) denominations. Foreign currencies can be exchanged at banks and money changers. View the latest exchange rates at www.xe.com.


Weather

The country experiences tropical weather year-round. Temperatures range from 21ºC (70ºF) to 32ºC (90ºF).  Higher elevations are much colder with temperatures between 15°C (59°F) to 25°C (77°F).  Annual rainfall varies from 2,000mm to 2,500mm. However, the wettest parts of Malaysia could well be the hill slopes of Sarawak’s inland areas, which receive a mean annual rainfall exceeding 5,000mm.


Practicalities

Time
Eight hours ahead of GMT and 16 hours ahead of U.S Standard Time.

Electricity
Voltage is 220 - 240 Volt AC at 50 cycles per second. Malaysia uses standard 3-pin square plugs and sockets.

Weight & Measurement
Malaysia follows the metric system for weight and measurement.

Telecommunications
Local calls can be made from public phones using coins or prepaid card. International calls can also be made using phone cards or at any Telekom office.