SEPANG: A total of 60 Immi-gration counters have been opened to help ease congestion at KL International Airport (KLIA).
This follows the addition of 14 new counters at the arrival checkpoints of the airport in anticipation of a rise in the entry of foreign tourists under the recently announced visa liberalisation programme.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said with the additional counters, there are now a total of 60 which would help ease congestion.
“All the 60 counters must be open during peak hours. This should expedite the process of passport checks for those arriving from overseas, especially under the visa-free programme.
“It is also a preparation for Visit Malaysia Year 2026,” he told a press conference after a inspecting of the new counters with Immigration Department director-general Datuk Ruslin Jusoh yesterday.
The minister also took time to speak to several travellers at the arrival checkpoints and enquired about their experience at the airport.
He also said those who arrive in the country are required to fill up the Malaysia Digital Arrival Card (MDAC) for the purpose of tracing their whereabouts.
However, he said exemption from filling the MDAC is given to all Singaporeans and holders of the Malaysia permanent residence visa, Malaysian long-term pass, diplomatic passport, Brunei General Certificate of Identity, Brunei Malaysia Frequent Traveller Facility, Thailand border pass and Indonesia border pass.
Saifuddin Nasution said the exemption is offered for the seven categories of foreigners as they are frequent travellers to Malaysia.
He said although foreign tourists are required to fill up the MDAC three days before arrival, the department has decided to ease the rule until Dec 31, allowing the foreigners to do so on arrival. However, the requirement will be compulsory from Jan 1 next year.
Recently, Malaysia introduced the visa liberalisation programme to boost tourism, especially those from China and India, who make up the highest number of tourists who visit Malaysia annually.