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Malaysia – Driving Licenses

Malaysia is a popular destination for tourists and expatriates. Foreign nationals who plan to drive in Malaysia must have a valid driving license. This article will discuss the rules and regulations regarding driving licenses for foreign nationals in Malaysia.

General rules regarding driving licenses for foreign nationals in Malaysia

Foreign nationals who wish to drive in Malaysia must have a valid driving license. It is important to note that international driving licenses are not recognized in Malaysia. Therefore, foreign nationals must obtain a Malaysian driving license to drive legally in the country.

Foreign nationals can use their own driving licenses for a limited period in Malaysia. The period of validity depends on the type of visa or pass issued to the foreign national. For example, a tourist visa holder can use their foreign driving license for up to three months. An employment pass holder can use their foreign driving license for up to one year. After the expiry of the visa or pass, foreign nationals must obtain a Malaysian driving license.

Exchanging, obtaining, and renewing a driving license in Malaysia

Foreign nationals can obtain a Malaysian driving license by taking a driving test. The driving test is conducted by the Road Transport Department (JPJ). The test consists of a written test and a practical driving test.

To apply for a Malaysian driving license, foreign nationals must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Must be at least 17 years old.
  • Must hold a valid foreign driving license.
  • Must have a valid visa or pass.
  • Must pass a medical examination.

Foreign nationals can exchange their driving license for a Malaysian driving license if they hold a driving license from certain countries. These countries include Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, and the United Kingdom.


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To exchange a foreign driving license for a Malaysian driving license, foreign nationals must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Must hold a driving license from one of the countries mentioned above.
  • Must have a valid visa or pass.
  • Must be present in Malaysia at the time of the application.
  • Must pass a medical examination.

Foreign nationals can renew their Malaysian driving license after the expiry of the license. The renewal can be done at any JPJ branch or online through the MySikap portal.

Contact details of relevant government departments or agencies

The Road Transport Department (JPJ) is responsible for issuing and renewing driving licenses in Malaysia. The JPJ has branches in all states in Malaysia. For more information, please visit their website at http://www.jpj.gov.my.

International Driving Permit in Malaysia

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is not recognized in Malaysia. Therefore, foreign nationals must obtain a Malaysian driving license to drive legally in the country.

Penalty system for motoring offences in relation to driving licenses in Malaysia

Foreign nationals who violate traffic rules and regulations in Malaysia are subject to penalties. The penalties can range from fines to imprisonment depending on the severity of the offense.

Foreign nationals who drive without a valid driving license in Malaysia are subject to fines and imprisonment. The penalty for driving without a valid driving license is a fine of up to RM1,000 or imprisonment for up to three months, or both.

Foreign nationals who violate traffic rules and regulations in Malaysia should pay the fines promptly to avoid any legal action against them.


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