How long can you stay as tourist by leaving/re-entering?

I saw an earlier thread on this forum here saying it was no problem to effectively live in Malaysia for several years on a tourist permit to entry (as a US citizen I believe I can stay for 90 days at a time), you just need to leave for at least three days at the end of the 90 day period and you'll gain a new 90 day term upon re-entry to Malaysia. However, one commenter at the end of the thread says the rules have changed and you can now only re-enter 3 times per year.

My situation is that my boyfriend might be moving to Malaysia as an expat for his company for at least one year, and since we prefer not to quickly get married for visa/paperwork reasons, I'd like to investigate if it's feasible for me to go with him on a tourist visa/permit for entry. I will be doing self-taught coding so I won't be requiring a real job so tourist visa will work for my situation. If I can only enter 3 times a year, I can reapply for a Japanese passport (I am a dual citizen but my last passport expired a decade or more ago as I exclusively use my US passport now). I'd only do this as a last resort as it will require asking my family in Japan to go obtain government paperwork and mail it to me in the US.

Does anybody have any experience/information as to how it will be best to go about staying in Malaysia on a tourist visa for a period of 1-1.5 years? Will two passports be required, or will I encounter re-entry issues either way?

Check with your embassy in KL. Some nationalities can get a dependent visa if they can confirm they are the equivalent of "common law" spouses. The Malaysian government does not recognise co-habiting, but can be persuaded to recognise a legal status from other countries. That is the first step.

Unfortunately I don't think we would qualify for that per our local government, I had that idea too.

I used to do that, I mean stay for almost 60 days and then leave Malaysia and visit Singapore or Indonesia or Vietnam or some other place in Asia and never had a problem. Did it for about four years until I decided to get my MM2H.

abdulkhalil :

I used to do that, I mean stay for almost 60 days and then leave Malaysia and visit Singapore or Indonesia or Vietnam or some other place in Asia and never had a problem. Did it for about four years until I decided to get my MM2H.

When were you doing this? After 2010?

It's more strict these days and you can risk being stopped and questioned if you only spend a day outside Malaysia. It's a good opportunity to see the region (airasiago has some great packages). There is no rule about how many entries per year, never has been. That would have to be announced as a major policy change. Instead its just left to the discretion of the immigration officer how long to grant you on return. What has happened, is that 2 visa runs work ok, but the officers can give less than 90 days thereafter if they think there is some abuse going on. But it's hard to predict what will happen. There are generally major immigration clamp downs going on now,  but more because of labour-related offenses. I am not sure what would happen if you used two different passports with the same name to enter Malaysia. The country only recognises single nationality. So it may end up being a red flag if when your fingerprints are taken they are found to match to another passport. Don't think it would help much and as long as you stay out for a few days, then it shouldn't be such a problem in principle. But it can be annoying to constantly have to plan ahead to travel and go through the stress of immigration.

wish i could help,,

Hi,

I am in a similar situation right now with my partner working in KL.. did you manage to go in and out of the country every 90days or so and then get back in ok with another 90days stamp?

Im wondering what the best thing is to do

Thanks,
Beth

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