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Our experience hitchhiking in Malaysia


    The experience in numbers:

      – Kilometers covered: 1.169 km
      – Number of vehicles: 35
      – Days on the road: 10
      – Total minutes waiting: 148 mins (2,5h)
      – Average wait / car: 4,2 mins
      – Average distance / car: 33,4 km
      – Average distance / day: 116,9 km
      – Longest wait on the road: 34 mins
      – Maximum distance in one day: 286 km


    How we lived it

Hitchhiking in Malaysia was definitely so easy.

As happens also in Thailand, the roads are great and the cars are powerful so you will find yourself advancing faster that you may initially think. The big difference with Thailand, or actually with any other Southeast Asian country, is that here everybody speaks English. So even if you learn few words to be on the road, you will end up without using them.

Sometimes, in other countries, you find people who don’t understand the concept of hitchhiking and some who do understand. Here, not only everybody understands the concept but most of them call it by its right name: Hitchhiking.

With one of the many people who picked us up in Malaysia!


We got to the country crossing from Thailand at Ban Dan Nok – Bukit Kayu Hitam border crossing, the most used since it’s the one going all the way to Bangkok. We have to say that since we had only a little less than three weeks to get to Singapore, we decided to stick to the west coast and stop several times on the way. This way, it got even much easier because there is an incredible road next to the coast connecting that border crossing until Singapore.

We never wrote down our destination in a cardboard. We used only our thumbs and as you can see in the numbers above, the average wait per car was a little more than 4 minutes.

On the road!


Something you will find so useful, even more if you want to cross the country as fast as possible, is that the first letter of the license plate determines the state where the car is registered (and hence most probably, the car will be going back there).

Here are the letters of the states we crossed:

  • R = Perlis
  • KV = Langkawi (Even if it’s not a state, they have their own license plate letter)
  • K = Kedah
  • P = Penang
  • A = Perak
  • W = Kuala Lumpur
  • M = Melaka
  • J = Johor
Once we got to our destination, nothing like starting to visit or going to chill directly to the beach :)


Even in the islands that we went hitchhiking was easy.

When we first got to the island of Pangkor, we got afraid thinking it wouldn’t work there. Since it is so small, we were the only foreigners there and it was so full of taxis in the port that the same locals were using, we thought we were going to have to wait a lot on the road. But in the end was even faster, our average wait there was less than one minute!

In Langkawi, another group of islands, was totally different. Since it was much more touristic, many cars were full of people and some others were asking for money. But still, the longest we wait here was 20 minutes. Not bad at all.

So that’s it. What would have happened if we would have hitchhiked out of our route, or in Malaysian Borneo, will remain as a doubt. But according to our experience, hitchhiking couldn’t be easier in Malaysia!

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