The Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) expresses its sincere appreciation to the Malaysian government for the strategic decision to implement a 30-day visa-free travel program for citizens of China and India effective today. 

The initiative serves as a great occasion for Malaysia to carry out a massive promotion to attract tourists from these high-yield countries ahead of our Visit Malaysia Year 2026 (VMY2026).

The exemption was in reciprocation to China giving Malaysians 15-day visa free travel and to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of diplomatic ties between our nations.

MAH recognizes the far-reaching benefits of this initiative, not only in revitalizing Malaysia’s tourism sector but also in fostering stronger economic ties between us and the two nations.

This decision also positions Malaysia to capture a significant market share from two of the most lucrative markets globally, China and India. Historically, both nations have been significant contributors to Malaysia’s tourism receipts and arrivals. The Tourism, Arts, and Culture Minister has noted a substantial increase in tourists from these nations in the January to September period of this year compared to 2019, indicating a growing interest in Malaysia as a tourism destination by these two nations. It is hoped that with this exemption in place, we are able to gain the momentum needed to cement Malaysia’s standing as the preferred destination for this discerning market.

MAH is ready and looking forward to collaborating with the government in ensuring the success of this visa exemption initiative. The hotel industry is prepared for the expected surge in Chinese and Indian tourists and sees this as an opportunity to significantly boost the recovery rate of Malaysia’s hotel sector.

As the nation embarks on this new phase of visa-free travel, MAH remains committed to supporting initiatives that contribute to the growth and recovery of Malaysia’s tourism and hospitality sectors.

Once again, we extend our gratitude to the government for being receptive to the industry’s needs and for this timely initiative that will serve as an important drive for tourism ahead of our VMY2026.