Frequently Asked Questions


1. Does every international student need a student pass to study in Malaysia?

Yes, this is a mandatory requirement under the laws and regulations of the Government of Malaysia.

2. Can I apply for a student pass directly or do I have to apply through my chosen educational institution?

Depending on your Institution type, you will have two options to do this:

  • i. Apply for your Visa online.

    Students who have received offer letters from Public Universities and Private Higher Education Institutions (IPTS) only will have the option to apply for their student Visa directly through the Education Malaysia website.

  • ii. Apply for your visa through your Institution.

    The application can also be done through the institution. Once you submit the payment and all required documents to the institution, they will begin the process of applying for your Visa Approval Letter (VAL).

    Student applying for language centres and skill centres will have to submit application via the institution.

3. What are the entry requirements to study at institutes of higher education in Malaysia?

International students must have at least twelve (12) years of education and have undergone a national/international examination recognized by the Ministry of Education for the purpose of admission to diploma or degree programmes.

4. Do I need to pass the IELTS or TOEFL examinations in order to obtain admission to a degree programme in Malaysia?

This requirement varies, depending on the course(s)/programmes(s) that you are interested in. Please clarify the course/programme specific entry requirements with the educational institution directly.

5. When should I apply for my student pass?

Generally, education institutions have different intake dates for various courses/programmes. Kindly refer to your institution for information pertaining to intake dates, recommended application submission dates, fees as well as document requirements.

6. Can I open a bank account?

Yes, once you get your student pass you can open a bank account.

7. Is it advisable to take hostel accommodation or private accommodation?

This solely depends upon your personal choices, although most Malaysian educational institutions offer quality accommodation services at affordable rates.

8. If my student pass application is rejected, can I get a refund for the application processing fee?

No, the student pass application processing fee is non-refundable.

9. Can I work while on a student pass?

All international students studying at public or private higher education institutions are allowed to work part-time for a maximum of 20 hours per week ONLY during semester breaks or holidays of more than 7 days at restaurants, petrol kiosks, mini markets and hotels as long as their student passes remain valid. Please note that prior approval from the Department of Immigration is required.

International students are NOT permitted to work as cashiers. In addition, in the hotel sector, international students are NOT allowed to work as singers, masseurs, musicians or GROs (Guest Relation Officers). International students are not allowed to engage in any job or activity deemed to be immoral.

Applications to work part time must be made through the educational institution at which the international students are enrolled. The international student needs to be present with the representative of the education institution at the Immigration Department of Malaysia in order to submit an application for part time work.

10. Can I pursue two degrees at the same time?

No, you are only allowed to study one full-time degree at any one time.

11. Do you offer any scholarships/Can I get a scholarship?

You will need to check with the college/university that has accepted you as a student on this matter. The Malaysian government also offers scholarship opportunities to talented students. For further information on these scholarships, you can refer to this link:

12. What are the tuition fees for international students?

Tuition fees will depend on the programme and the institution that you choose. Please use our cost calculator to estimate the costs.

For more information regarding the cost of education in Malaysia, please click Here.

For detailed information, please liaise directly with the institutions you are considering.

13. What are the living expenses for international students?

Cost of living in Malaysia will depend on your location and lifestyle choices.

For more information regarding the cost of living in Malaysia, please click Here.

14. If I cancel my application, am I entitled to a refund?

Refunds are only processed under certain conditions. Please refer to our Refund policy for more details.

15. I have lost my iKad, what must I do?

Please submit a police report immediately. You will then be required to submit a copy of the police report to your institution and inform them to apply for a new iKad. Please note that there will be a fee charged for the issuance of a new iKad.

16. How can I check whether my passport was submitted to EMGS or collected by the institution?

You can track your application status on our website to check whether EMGS has received your passport. You can also download the EMGS mobile app to your mobile phone in order to get automatic notifications.


1. Do I need an entry visa to Malaysia?

A visa is required to gain entry into Malaysia. Some countries are exempted from this requirement. Please check with the nearest Malaysian Embassy/Mission.

2. How long will it take me to get a Visa Approval Letter (VAL)?

It should take 14 working days upon receipt of a complete application and payment. Since the Visa Approval Letter (VAL) is issued by the Immigration Department, the 14 working days is at the discretion of the Immigration Department.

3. How does one get an entry visa into Malaysia?

To obtain an entry visa, you are required to visit the nearest Malaysian Embassy in your home country along with

  • your offer letter from the Malaysian education institution
  • the Visa Approval Letter issued by the Immigration Department of Malaysia
  • all other relevant documents and forms duly completed
  • payment as outlined by the Malaysian Embassy for the application of an entry visa.

4. What are the documents required to apply for a student pass?

Please click Here

You will need to liaise directly with your university for the submission of a complete set of documents. Should you decide to make an online application on the website, you will be able to upload your

  • Offer Letter
  • Passport Pages
  • Passport photo
  • Academic Transcripts
  • Medical Examination Report

5. When and how can I pay for my student pass application and processing fee?

There are 2 payment options

  • Through your education institution: Contact your institution to advice on the correct way to send the payment to them in order for the payment to be made to EMGS.

  • Online payment using a Visa or MasterCard on the website. Please note that if you select this payment method, there will be a 3% Convenience Fee added to the total amount requested for your application. Online payment method is only applicable for students enrolling in Public or Private Universities and have made an online application via EMGS website.

Please make sure that if you are applying online, you obtain advice from your institution about the correct selection for the following items;

  • Type of Insurance
  • iKad delivery method
  • EMGS Endorsement or Self Endorsement
  • VAL delivery method
  • Institution Name and Campus

Please use our cost calculator to estimate the costs

6. What is a student pass?

A student pass is a multiple entry visa which gives you permission to remain in Malaysia for the purposes of study at an approved institution on an approved course.

7. What is the validity of a student pass?

For students who are making new applications to Public & Private Higher Education institutions -, students have the option to apply for a Student Pass that covers the entire duration of their course (subject to sufficient passport validity). For Renewal applications, the student pass will be issued on an annual basis. When making an application, it is recommended that the passport validity should be [duration sought + 12 months].

For students enrolling in Language Schools and Skills Training Centres, the Department of Immigration issues Student Passes for a maximum of 12 months or, if the course duration is less than 12 months the Pass will be for the duration of the course.

8. What is a Multiple Entry Visa (MEV)?

A MEV is issued to allow you to make any number of journeys / entries into Malaysia.

9. Do I need to submit a security bond deposit in order to obtain a student pass?

Yes, you will be required to submit a security bond deposit known as a “personal bond”. Please note that this amount is set by the Government and varies depending on your country of origin. This fee is paid to your educational institution as a form of security. EMGS does not collect this amount, however, we do require a form from your institution showing that the amount has been paid to them. Please contact your college/university for further details.

Click Here for a list of Personal Bond fees.

10. How long does it take to get an entry visa from the Malaysian Embassy?

This depends upon the Malaysian Embassy in your home country. However, it typically does not take more than 3 working days.

11. When do I get a student pass /sticker endorsed into my passport?

Once you arrive in Malaysia, you will be required to attend post arrival medical screening within 7 days. Your institution will accept your passport for the purposes of arranging for the student pass/sticker endorsement. From the day your passport is submitted at our front desk, the process should take 14 working days. Please note that this timeline is at the discretion of the Immigration Department.

12. What happens if I overstay?

You are required to communicate with your institution to clear your overstay at the Malaysian Immigration Department. Penalty fees may apply, and these fees are at the discretion of the Immigration Department. Subsequently, you will need to apply for a special pass to ensure that you have a valid pass throughout your stay in Malaysia.

13. The website tracker shows me that EMGS requires me to submit my passport. How do I submit the passport? Should I courier it to you?

You are only required to submit your passport once you are in Malaysia. EMGS will only accept passport submissions from education institutions. Once you arrive in Malaysia, please submit your passport to your institution. Kindly ensure that you have a valid pass that allows you to remain in Malaysia while we process the endorsement of your Student Pass.

14. My institution said that they cannot create a new application for me as my previous application is still active.

Please communicate with your previous institution to request for a cancellation of your previous application.

15. My course will end a few months after my student pass expires. Since I need to be in Malaysia for those last few months, do I need to apply for a student pass for the remaining period?

Yes, you are required to apply for a student pass. Students are only permitted to study in Malaysia if they are holding a valid student pass. You can request your institution to apply for an extension (renewal) of the student pass to cover the remaining period.

16. Do I need to exit the country if I want to change from employment pass/dependent pass/MM2H to student pass?

No, you are not required to exit the country; however you are required to shorten the pass and apply for a special pass.

17. I am married to a Malaysia citizen, do I need a student pass?

Please check your pass and see if you are exempted from the student pass requirement. If not, you are required to apply for a student pass. Kindly contact the Immigration Department for further information.

18. My Visa Approval Letter (VAL) has expired and I did not come to Malaysia. Now I want to come and study. What do I do?

It is mandatory for all international students to enter Malaysia before the expiry of the VAL since the VAL is issued with six (6) months validity, which is sufficient for international students to enter the country. Even if you have obtained a valid Single-Entry Visa (SEV) but entered Malaysia after the expiry date of the VAL the Malaysian Immigration Department may not proceed with the student pass endorsement.

In this situation that your VAL is expired, the Immigration Department does not extend the validity of the VAL. As such, you are required to apply for a new VAL prior to your entry into Malaysia. Kindly contact your institution to cancel the expired VAL and request EMGS to close the current application and submit a new application for VAL.

19. I do not want to study anymore, how can I cancel my application?

We only accept cancelation requests from institutions. Please contact your institution to request further assistance.

20. Do I need to exit the country if I change from a Language Centre(IPS) to a Private Institute of Higher Education(IPTS)? My institute asked me to exit the country.

You are required to exit the country and submit a new application for Visa Approval Letter (VAL).

21. What is an eVAL?

An eVAL is an Electronic Visa Approval Letter which will be issued as a soft copy through the EMGS system instead of a physical VAL. The eVAL can be emailed to the student as a PDF or downloaded through the “Track application” page in the website; so students no longer need to wait for the VAL to be posted to them by their institution.

22. Am I eligible to receive an eVAL?

The eVAL is available for all students applying to study in Malaysia at Public (Universiti Awam - IPTA) and Private Institutions (Institut Pengajian Tinggi Swasta - IPTS), Colleges, Language Schools as well as Skills Training Centres.


1. Can I study on my social visit / tourist visa?

No, this is not permitted. International students are only permitted to study full time courses in Malaysia with a valid student pass issued by the Immigration Department.

If you enter Malaysia with a social pass, you will be asked to exit Malaysia and re-enter with a Visa Approval Letter.

2. Can I stay in Malaysia after performing my Pre-VAL Medical Screening in Malaysia?

It is not recommended for you to stay in Malaysia under a Social Pass while you are waiting for your Visa Approval Letter. This may cause delays in your Visa processing.

3. I am on a social pass. Can I be given a special pass once my social pass expires during my VAL application?

It is not recommended for students to be in Malaysia on a Social Pass during the VAL application process. If your social pass expires while you are in Malaysia, EMGS cannot process a special pass for you. We can only process a Special Pass for students if their Student Pass expires.

If you are on a Social Pass and are planning to obtain a Student Pass, you will be asked to exit Malaysia once your Visa Approval Letter is issued. You can then re-enter Malaysia with your Visa Approval Letter and Single Entry Visa (if an SEV is required for your country).


1. What is medical screening?

Medical screening is a health check that consists of a general examination by the examining doctor, blood and urine tests as well as a chest x-ray examination.

A medical examination is required for all international students before arrival into Malaysia with the exception of students who are enrolling into Public Universities.

In addition, a Post arrival medical examination is mandatory for international students and you are required to attend and complete the medical examination at EMGS's approved panel of clinics/hospitals within 7 days from your date of entry into Malaysia. Students enrolling into Malaysia Public Universities can attend the medical screening at clinics located in their universities.

2. Why do I have to undergo a Malaysian medical screening procedure?

It is a mandatory requirement from the Government of Malaysia to protect the health of Malaysian residents and to reduce the potential burden on the public health service in Malaysia. The Ministry of Education (MOE) has laid down criteria for the assessment of the health condition of international students which must be complied with. The criteria does allow for students to appeal a failed result.

3. What are the consequences if I do not attend a Malaysian medical examination?

If you fail to attend a Malaysian medical examination within the timeline stipulated by EMGS, your student pass application will be cancelled and no student pass will be issued.

4. What happens at the medical screening?

After arriving in Malaysia, you should contact an EMGS appointed panel clinic to make an appointment. You are required to bring along a copy of your passport to the panel clinic for medical screening.

The examining doctor will request that you sign a consent letter before starting the medical examination. Blood and urine specimens will be taken from you at the panel clinic and in the event that the panel clinic has no x-ray facility, you will be directed to proceed to an x-ray centre within the same day for a chest x-ray to be taken.

The examining doctor at the panel clinic shall assess and conclude whether or not you are suitable to remain in Malaysia based on MOE criteria.

Please note that EMGS staff are not permitted to discuss the outcome of your medical screening or your appeal as this information is confidential. All related clarification shall be sought directly from the examining doctor at the panel clinic.

5. Where are EMGS approved panel clinics located?

A full list of clinics is available Here.

6. How do you make an appeal in the event that you have failed the medical screening?

An appeal must be made at the same panel clinic you visited previously for medical screening. This should be done within 7 days of receipt of the notification that you have failed your medical screening.

You may make an appeal by visiting the panel clinic and submit the duly completed Appeal Letter to the examining doctor. The examining doctor shall provide clarification as to the confirmatory tests required. All costs relating to the appeal shall be borne by you and are directly payable to the panel clinic. The panel clinic will submit the Appeal Letter to EMGS. There are no fees payable to EMGS for your appeal process.

The result of the confirmatory tests will be sent directly to EMGS by the panel clinic and reviewed by the EMGS Appeal Committee. The decision of the Appeal Committee is final and there is no further right of appeal if you are unsuccessful.

In the event that your appeal is unsuccessful, EMGS will proceed with the pass cancellation process. Any immigration fees paid to EMGS will be refunded and any insurance premium for the remaining insured period from the date of pass cancellation will be refunded, provided no insurance claims have been made. Refunds will be made through your education institution and you will be notified of the sum refunded.

7. What is Pre-VAL Medical Screening?

Pre- VAL Medical Screening is a series of medical tests required to be performed by students prior to arrival at Malaysia. This test is needed as a means to ensure that the students are fit to study in Malaysia.

8. Can I perform Pre-VAL Medical Screening in Malaysia?

Yes, you may proceed to perform your pre-VAL medical screening in Malaysia. If you choose to have your pre-VAL medical screening done in Malaysia, EMGS will only accept medical reports for screening done at an EMGS registered clinic.

9. Do I still have to perform Post–VAL Medical Screening after passing my Pre-VAL Medical Screening?

Yes. The final decision relating to your medical status still depends on the result obtained from our panel clinic in Malaysia.

10. I need to be admitted, where is the nearest hospital to my place?

EMGS offers insurances from AXA and AIA. If your institution has purchased insurance from us, please click Here for more information on the package selected and the list of panel clinics/hospitals under each insurance providers.

11. I have performed my Pre-VAL Medical Screening at one of the EMGS registered clinics in my home country. Do I need to submit any documents to the institution?

If you attend the Medical Screening at any of our overseas EMGS registered clinics, EMGS does not require you to submit any documents since your medical result will automatically be updated onto our system.

12. Which clinic should I perform my medical screening at once I arrive in Malaysia?

Please click Here to view to the list of panel clinics.

13. How long is the validity of the Medical Screening that was done in Malaysia after the VAL is issued?

The Medical Screening results are valid for 180 days from the date of the medical screening.

14. I am applying for a Renewal of my Student Pass. Do I need to attend a medical screening?

Medical Screening is not required for renewal applications.

15. I am under treatment right now, can I still apply for a student pass?

If you are under treatment for a particular disease, the doctor examining you at the time of EMGS medical screening will assess the severity of your medical condition and decide on your suitability to study in Malaysia based on the criteria set by Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE).


1. How can I shorten my student pass?

You will need to surrender your original passport to the education institution. They will then organize for your pass to be shortened by the Department of Immigration. You can also shorten your student pass through EMGS and It should take approximately 5 working days to process. Please note that this is at the discretion of the Immigration Department.

2. What must be done if I get a new passport?

You will need to get your student pass transferred to the new passport. Please contact your institution to make the necessary arrangements for the transfer of your student pass.

3. What is the process for a student pass renewal?

A student pass renewal application must be submitted by the educational institution to EMGS no later than 6 weeks prior to the current pass expiry date.

4. What is the validity of my student pass?

The validity of a student pass is twelve months otherwise it will be issued for the duration of the duration of the programme, if the duration is less than twelve months.

5. What happens if I need to extend my student pass validity period?

If you need to extend your student pass then you must make an application for renewal to EMGS via your institution. Please ensure you apply with sufficient time for processing. It is highly recommended that you submit your application at least 6 weeks before the Student Pass expiry date. You may be required to submit supporting documentation or an explanation letter if the extension period you request exceeds the duration of the course you are studying.

6. How long does it take to renew my student pass?

It should take 14 working days upon receipt of a complete application and payment, provided all the EMGS requirements are met within the stipulated timelines. Since the student pass is issued by the Immigration Department, the 14 working days is at the discretion of the Immigration Department.

7. At the end of my degree, can I get admission into another education institution for another degree programme?

Yes, however your current student pass would need to be cancelled by the Immigration Department of Malaysia. A release letter from the existing institution and an offer letter from the new institution would have to be submitted in order to process a new student pass application. You will then have to regard this application as a new application for study in Malaysia and make the appropriate application through the new education institution to EMGS. An explanation letter will be required and the final decision to approve the application is at the discretion of Immigration.

In the event that your new application is within six (6) months of your previous application, you will not be required to obtain a fresh Malaysian medical screening report. In case of doubt, your existing Malaysian medical screening report shall not be dated more than 180 days from the date of your new application.

8. What if I can’t renew my passport at the time of applying for renewal of my Student Pass?

You may apply for a shorter extension. Please note that you will need to apply for a new passport and transfer your student pass to the new passport before you can renew the student pass again. In order to transfer the Student Pass, your institution will be required to submit an application to EMGS. A fee will apply for transferring a student pass.

9. My institution requested me to submit my passport as they said that EMGS requested them to do so. However, my current pass has expired. Will it be an issue for me?

You are required to liaise with your institution to clear your overstay at the Department of Immigration and apply for a special pass.

10. How early can I submit my passport for renewal?

EMGS accepts your passport 3 months prior to expiry of your student pass.


1. Can I bring my dependants with me?

You are allowed to bring your dependants only if you are studying full time in Malaysia on a course/programme that is more than twelve (12) months long. Approval of your dependant pass application is at the discretion of the Immigration Department of Malaysia.

Please note that EMGS will process dependant passes for students enrolled in Public and Private Universities only. Postgraduate students from all countries are eligible to apply for a dependant pass. With regard to undergraduate students, students from 17 countries are eligible to apply for a dependant pass. Please find the complete list HERE. Please notify your university if you intend to bring your dependants since the application will be made through your institution.

2. Who can be my dependants?

Your parents, spouse and your children can be your dependants.

3. What is the application process for a dependant pass?

The dependant pass application should be made through your education institution. The student pass application will be made through EMGS and the dependant pass process can only commence once the Principal’s student pass has been issued. You need to submit a separate application for each dependant.

4. What would a dependant pass cost?

The processing fee for a dependant pass application is RM 250. The dependant pass fee is RM90 and the Multiple Entry Visa fee varies depending on the nationality of the applicant. A Journey Performed Fee of RM500 is also applicable.


1. Can I change my mind and transfer to another education institution?

If you wish to transfer to another education institution, you will need:

  • a release letter from the current college/university and
  • an offer letter from the new college/univers

These documents are required to support your application for a new student pass sponsored by the new college/university. Your current college/university will arrange for your existing pass to be shortened prior to the issuance of the release letter. You are allowed to change university or course only twice.

The student pass is not transferable to the new institution. This means that you have to apply for a new student pass.

2. What is ‘Variation’?

A ‘variation’ application is any application where a student wants to change a course or institution while at the same level of study (e.g. Bachelor’s/Masters/Phd). A variation is different from a progression application in that it happens before the student completes their current programme of study. Applications for a higher level of studies upon completion of the current studies are known as ‘progression’ applications.

3. How can I add or drop classes or change the grading option for a course?

Please refer to the institution for further information - adding or dropping classes does not always mean a change of course. If it does then the institution will refer to EMGS on your behalf.

4. I am studying CAT (Chartered Accountant Technician) and I want to continue my studies on ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants): Do I need to apply for a new application?

Yes, you need to apply for a new student pass because this is considered to be a change of course.

5. How many times can a student change their institution or course?

A student is allowed to change a university or course twice. A 3rd application by the student would be rejected.

6. How much is the processing fee for university or course variation?

Please use our cost calculator to estimate the costs.

7. What is the process to change institute/course?

You are required to obtain an offer letter from the new institution/faculty; and a release letter from the previous institution/faculty. The new institution/faculty will then submit these and other application documents to EMGS.

Please note that you need to shorten the current student pass and apply for a Visa Approval Letter (VAL) under the new institution/faculty. For the complete document checklist, please click HERE.

8. Do I need to exit the country if I want to change my institute/course?

The requirement to leave the country depends on the type of the pass you are holding at the time of application, as well as the type of institution you are transferring to or from. For further clarification please contact us via email or call.

9. I want to change to another institute, do I need to obtain a release letter?

A release letter is required for all international students applying to change institute.

10. My old institute is closed, how do I submit a release letter?

Please refer to the Enforcement Division Department of Higher Education (Bahagian Penguatkuasaan Dan Inspektoran Jabatan Pengajian Tinggi) to obtain a supporting letter.


1. Do I need to submit my resume to apply for a Visa Approval Letter (VAL)? I can't find it on your checklist but my institute asked me to submit one.

You are not required to submit your resume as it is not part of the EMGS checklist. Please click HERE to find the document checklist

2. I checked on your application tracker and it shows that my application is on hold due to additional documents required. Can I send the documents directly to you?

If your application has been created through your institution, you will need to submit the additional required documents to them before they can proceed to submit it to EMGS.

However, if your application is made online directly by yourself through Education Malaysia website, you can submit the additional required documents directly to EMGS through

EMGS will only accept additional documents from the e-mail address registered under the student’s application or from the institution’s email address. Any other e-mail addresses used to send additional documents will not be entertained.


1. How do I know if my country requires a Single Entry Visa for Malaysia?

This information is available on the Malaysian Immigration Department website

Please refer to the link below;

2. Can I choose to receive a Single Entry Visa from a Malaysian Embassy in a country where I am not a citizen?

Applicants are required to obtain a Single Entry Visa (SEV) from their home country. In the event that they plan to obtain the SEV from a country other than their home country, they need to provide a document to show that they hold a long term pass in that country.

3. There is no Malaysia High Commission in my country, how do I apply for a Single Entry Visa (SEV)?

Kindly refer to the Immigration Department’s website for the SEV requirement by country. If your country is on the list of countries which require an SEV to enter Malaysia, you can obtain the SEV from any neighbouring country.

Non-Visa Required Countries

Visa Required Countries with Malaysian Embassies

4. I applied for an SEV and it is still valid, but my VAL is expired. Can I still come to Malaysia?

No. Both the VAL and SEV must be valid for you to enter Malaysia.

5. How do I get an SEV if I received an eVAL?

The process is the same as when you receive a physical VAL. You should print your eVAL and submit it together with other required documents to the Malaysian Embassy/Mission from where you will be applying for an SEV.

6. What documents do I need to apply for an SEV?

The document requirements may vary between different Malaysian Embassies. Please contact the Malaysian Embassy for the exact requirements and procedures.


1. I want to change to another institute, but the new institute can’t register me because I still have an active pass.

Kindly liaise with your previous institution and request that they cancel your active pass with EMGS or directly at the Immigration Department.

2. My VAL is expired but your system still shows I have an active pass, why?

Even though the VAL has expired, it is still active in the Immigration system. As such you are required to liaise with your institution and request that they cancel the expired VAL.

3. I renewed my passport, but my Visa Approval Letter (VAL) is under my old passport number. What should I do?

Please contact your institution and request for VAL correction.

4. I lost my VAL / Passport, what do I do now?

You need to obtain a police report and liaise with your institution for further assistance.


1. My special pass is expired and I have overstayed, what do I do now?

Please contact your institution and request that they apply for an overstay Special Pass for you.

2. I am changing from institute A to B. Who has to apply for a Special Pass for me?

The new institution is required to apply for the Special Pass for you.

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