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Travel Information




The official language is the Bahasa Malaysia. English is however widely used in business. The locals speak their own dialects




+8 GMT




Valid passports are required for entry into Sabah even if you are travelling from Peninsula Malaysia or Sarawak.

Only citizens of Commonwealth countries, ASEAN, Ireland, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Lichtenstein do not need a visa to enter Sabah. Nationals of the following countries are also exempted for a visit not exceeding 3 months: Austria, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Luxembough, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, Tunisia and USA. Citizens of Bulgaria, Rumania, Russia and Yugoslavia are allowed a 7-day visa free visit.




The ringgit, also known as the Malaysian dollar, is the Malaysian currency. 1 Ringgit equals 100 cents. Money and travelers checks can be exchanged at banks and moneychangers. Credit cards are accepted in hotels and department stores. Cash however, is required in the rural areas.

Use the Currency Converter to check the exchange rate that corresponds to your local currency. Money changers are dotted in all shopping complexes and it is easily accessible.




The complete range of souvenirs, handicrafts and gift items are found at the big shopping complexes in Kota Kinabalu and even in the resort's Hotel Shop. Items to look for are antiques, basketware, beads, mats, dastar, pottery, sabah tea, mushrooms, weavings and handicrafts.




The Government tax is 5% and service tax is 10%.




Banks and Government offices:

Banks are open 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon/2 p.m. Monday to Friday, and some are open 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday



Most government offices are open from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Monday through Friday and some are open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. Commercial offices and businesses are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.


Shops (Hours vary):

Shops open 9/10 a.m. to 9/10 p.m. Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.




Lightweight clothing is ideal with sweaters for the high land areas. A shirt, jacket and tie is normal office attire and is appropriate for business. Shorts, miniskirts, sleeveless garments for women are not advisable, especially in the rural areas. It is advisable for ladies when entering mosques and temples or local village to wear long sleeves and loose pants or long skirts.




Month Average Temp oF(oC) Humidity  
Jan-Dec 71.6oF to 86oF
(22oC to 30oC)
Medium to High Cool breezes along the coast makes for comfortable temperatures.

Check the following links for Kota Kinabalu's current weather forecast

 Malaysian Meteorological Service
  Yahoo! Weather
  Sabah Tourism Promotion Corporation



Ensure that food is well cooked and consume only bottled mineral water.




220--240 volts with 50 cycles AC are available. Plug fittings must be three pin square or round.








Taxis can be hailed on the street or at designated stands.




Private companies operate bus services fo inter city routes as well as within the city itself some which are air-conditioned, though most the local buses tend to be overcrowded.




Sabah rail is the only railway line in Borneo. It runs from Tanjung Aru station in Kota Kinabalu down to Tenom.




Cars can be hired with or without drivers. Self driving though requires an International license and a minimum age of 23. Traffic keeps to the left. Seat belts are compulsory for the driver as well as the front seat passenger.



Saying it in Bahasa Melayu

Pronounciation guide : 'a' as in Car, 'c' as in chip, 'sy' as in shop, 'g' as in girl

 Good morning Se-la-mat Pa-gi
 Good afternoon Selamat Tengah-hari
 Good evening Selamat petang
 Good night Selamat malam
 Goodbye Selamat tinggal
 What is your name? Siapa nama(name) anda(you)
 Thank You Terima Kasih
 Food Makanan
 Drink Minuman
 What time? Jam berapa?
 I am from ... Saya dari ...
 I Saya
Dates (2004) Name of the Holiday

 1 Jan, Thu

New Year's Day

 22-23 Jan,  Thu & Fri

Chinese New Year

 2-3 Feb, Mon-Tue

Hari Raya Aidil Adha **

 22 Feb, Sun Awal Muharam (Ma'al Hijrah) - Muslim Festival
 9 Apr, Fri Good Friday - (Christian Festival)
 1 May, Sat Labour Day 
 2 May, Sun Maulud el-Rasul
 3 May, Mon Wesak Day  - Buddist Festival
 30 & 31 May, Sun & Mon Tadau Kaamatan - Kadazan Community
 31 Aug, Tue National Day
 16 Sept, Thu Sabah Head of State's Birthday & Malaysia Day
 13 Nov, Sun Deepavali - Hindu Festival
 14-15 Nov, Sun & Mon Hari Raya Aidilfitri - Muslim New Year
 25 Dec, Sat Christmas Day
** Subject to change


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