Retire in Malaysia

Malaysia is a superb retirement destination. English is widely spoken. It has an English based legal system. The country offers exceptional health care and great infrastructure.  Malaysia, unlike Cambodia, is ‘Asia-easy’.

For the retiree though, Malaysia should be considered if only for having the most open, sophisticated and retiree-friendly program in South East Asia.  ‘MM2H’ (Malaysia My Second Home Visa) is a model for other countries to follow.

Penang, an island linked by two bridges to the North West coast of Malaysia, is like a less crowded, less congested and greener Hong Kong.


With tropical jungles, palm-fringed beaches, cool mountain retreats and glittering skyscrapers, Malaysia is made up of 13 states split across two separate pieces of land separated by the South China Sea.  There’s a vast mix of cultures and nationalities in this Asian nation – and first-world comforts are married with a sense of adventure.


Population: About 30 million

Capital city: Kuala Lumpur

Largest city: Kuala Lumpur

Political system: Constitutional monarchy

Main languages: Malay is the official language, but English is widely spoken in business. The Chinese population in Malaysia speaks Cantonese, Hokkien or Hakka, while the Indian population speaks Tamil, Hindi or Malayalam. Islam.

Main religion: Other religions include Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Confucianism and Taoism

Time: GMT+8


Best time to visit depends on your tastes: hot or wet.  The hottest months are February and March. There is usually very little rain and blue skies.  The wettest months are during the monsoon, which comes and goes May to October.  Generally these months can be quite wet with the rest of the year a little less so.  The consensus is that November, December and January are the coolest and driest months of the year.


There are many options from Australia to Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.   From there, it’s easy to connect to Penang, Melaka, Langkawi, etc.  And, Malaysia is likely the only country in all of Asia where you don't have to fill out an immigration card.

From Sydney (for example) you can direct to Kuala Lumpur with Air Asia or Malaysian Airlines (see chart).  All other airlines require a stop over.  But the good news is, you can stopover in most major Southeast Asia cities such as Bangkok, Singapore, Hong Kong, etc. adding another "go see" city to your trip. 

Direct Flights – Sydney to Kuala Lumpur:  Air Asia $450 USD,  Malaysia Airlines $700 USD

One stop – Sydney to Kuala Lumpur via Singapore:  Singapore airlines $900 USD, Qantas $900 USD, Virgin $1,000 USD

One stop – Sydney to Kuala Lumpur via Hong Kong:  Cathay $900 USD

One stop – Sydney to Kuala Lumpur via Bangkok:  Thai airways $1100 USD

You can also Budget Airline - Sydney to Kuala Lumpur via Singapore:  Scoot ($450 USD) + Tiger or Jetstar ($70 USD)