Photo Credit: Meriç Dağlı
The Lure Of Low-Cost Living: Malaysia Creates New Visa For Digital Nomads
Malaysia is the latest country vying to attract digital nomads seeking remote work-friendly destinations. The Southeast Asian country announced a new visa program as it positions itself as a hub for location-independent professionals.
The DE Rantau program promotes digital professional mobility and tourism across Malaysia. Welcoming local and foreign digital nomads, the program’s focus is its ‘DE Rantau Nomad Pass’ in addition to the creation of certified accommodation hubs and communities that support nomadic living. A range of local services including travel, tourism, transportation, e-commerce, and e-payments are also available to pass holders.
Who Qualifies for the DE Rantau Nomad Pass?
DE Rantau Nomad Pass is a Professional Visit Pass that permits qualified foreign digital nomads to travel and work in Malaysia for up to 12 months and renewal for an additional year.
Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), the government entity behind the initiative, identifies IT, digital marketing, and digital content creators and developers as ideal program candidates.
To qualify for the program, you must be a full-time or part-time remote worker, digital freelancer, or independent contractor earning at least $24,000 annually.
Proof of work status is verified during the application process, which requires submitting active client or employment documentation. Client and employment contracts must specify a duration that exceeds three months, the minimum stay granted with the DE Rantau Nomad Pass.
Freelance and contract professionals are eligible to work with local and foreign clientele. Remote workers who work for an organization, however, must be employed by a non-Malaysian company.
Primary pass holders may also bring his/her spouse and children. Fees for the main applicant and dependents are currently MYR1,000.00 ($213.15) and MYR500.00 ($106.58), respectively.
How to Apply
Applications are now open for DE Rantau Nomad Pass. The estimated processing time for applications is four weeks after submission is complete. Additional information and application details can be found on DE Rantau’s website.
Related: Black Expat: After Living In Five Countries, I Chose Malaysia For Its Blend Of Cultures