Who are you?
My name is Shazed; I am a Chemical Engineer and a husband as well. I am living in Malaysia for last 3 years and completed my postgraduate here from a top research university. This was my first expat experience and I enjoyed exploring the new country and the excellent quality of life offered by the nearby vicinity. My wife and I are having fun since our relocation to Malaysia as there is lots of scope for leisure, mostly in the long holidays.
Where, when and why did you move abroad?
I moved from Dhaka, Bangladesh, to the Peninsular Malaysia when I was offered a scholarship to continue the postgraduate study.Among some other Asian countries, I have learned Malaysia to be one of the finest to offer a diversified and multicultural environment. After a few months, my wife joined with me when she was also offered a scholarship. From the beginning, I am living in Serdang, Selangor which is close by Federal territory of Kuala Lumpur – the Capital of Malaysia.
What challenges did you face during the move?
Heading to the unknown places, I must say, was the main challenge! Lots of highways, subways and streets are built throughout the Selangor and Kuala Lumpur region. Even sometimes, the taxi drivers were not familiar to the exact way of destination. Choice of foods was as limited to me as most of the local foods are prepared by using sugar. Those were not suitable to spice lovers like me. Those days, the fast-food chains have only been the place of dining in. Malay language was not a big deal to learn as the alphabets used are well known English alphabets.
How did you find somewhere to live?
It’s enjoyable to live here if someone is known to the Asian culture. Malaysia is always offering to the world’s people to live there. For me, the first thing I planned to do was to rent an apartment and to purchase some furniture and utensils for living. It was not been so difficult to be set here as I got some friends who have been moved here prior to my shifting from Bangladesh. Price of goods is reasonable and obviously, it helps people to live a better life.
Are there many other expats in your area?
Many expats are living here in Serdang, Selangor. They are from different countries, mostly from Southern Asia. A significant number of expats are from far-east and middle-east of Asia. Most of the expats are working in the academic positions in the nearby University. Some are Doctors with their job in some reputed clinics or hospitals. Anyone will be interested to live here if he/she is attracted to be familiar with a multicultural environment. We always wait for the festivals as those are the most effective options to congregate with the diversity.
What is your relationship like with the locals?
Malaysia has three major races of peoples who are referred to as local residents. The Chinese and Indian peoples who are living here from their few ancestors they are also considered as the local people. Although, they are from different origins, are intimate to the indigenous people and to the expats as-well. They are nice people with a broad mentality and willing to help others.
What do you like about life where you are?
I always love the interesting sights the vicinity has to offer, and its exciting cultural combination. The most exciting thing to my apartment is the view of Petronas Twin Towers which looks gorgeous at night. In general, Selangor and Kuala Lumpur are the immense places for expats from different countries of World. The entire Malaysia enjoys its famous tropical weather and treats you with implausible culinary familiarities and getaways. It is easy to master the local culture if anyone is interested.
What do you dislike about your expat life?
The scope of working for the expats is strictly limited in compare to the local people. You will find difficulties to win a job which matches to your qualifications. The visa/permit processing time is too long; hence creates problem to leave the country in emergency. Moreover, Malaysia hardly offers the expats to be eligible for regular bank loan, or any other residence ship facilities. The expats have to pay higher than the locals when heading to any of leisure or recreational spots.
What advice would you give to anyone following in your footsteps?
First, go though the online features those reflects the life of expats in Malaysia. Choose your location of living; compare the living costs to your current life. Search for the friends who can help you with information and when moving to Malaysia. Revise your earnings; if it’s sufficient to live here then a better life is waiting for you and your family.
What are your plans for the future?
So far, there is no plan to move from Malaysia in near future. I am now familiar with some special lunch breaks for long 2-2.5 hours and relaxed manner to working hours. Now-a-days, I surprisingly like the traditional Malay cuisine and its practice to most of the official events. My wife also likes the culture, food, places and the country itself. I want to take pleasure in Malaysian life so far as I can afford.