International Airports in Malaysia – A Short Guide 2023

Do you have a trip to Malaysia in mind? If this is the case, you must refresh your destination knowledge before beginning to plan your trip. This Southeast Asian country is well-known for its diverse and stunning scenery, friendly people, and delectable cuisine. Regardless of whether you are a seasoned traveller or it is your first time applying for a Malaysia visit visa, you should be aware of Malaysia’s international airports. It is essential to know which international airports provide the services you require for your trip, as there are many across the country. To learn more about the international airports in Malaysia, keep reading.

1. Kuala Lumpur International Airport

Kuala Lumpur International Airport

Among Malaysia’s international airport list, the most popular, busiest, and the prestigious airport is located in the country’s capital city, Kuala Lumpur. The Kuala Lumpur International Airport is Malaysia’s main international gateway and handles the majority of international passenger traffic. The airport, which is located 45 kilometres south of the city’s centre in the Sepang District of Selangor, covers a total of 100 square kilometres and has a five-story building with a basement level. The two main terminals at Kuala Lumpur International Airport are KLIA Main and KLIA2. The 57-kilometer-long Express Rail Link connects Kuala Lumpur International Airport to the city’s transportation hub, KL Sentral. There are two ERL stations in the Main Terminal Building and in the Gateway@klia2. Non-stop express trains leave KL Sentral every 15 to 20 minutes and arrive at the airport in about 28 minutes. Buses and taxis also connect the international airport to the city’s main areas.

2. Langkawi International Airport

Malaysian visitors who have obtained a Malaysia visa to explore the tranquil beach shores of Langkawi can disembark at the island’s international airport. However, flights to Langkawi island are only available from a few countries. Langkawi International Airport is the only international airport on Langkawi Island and is located on the western side of the island, 30 minutes by car from all premier beach resorts on the northern and western sides of the island. During its colonial era, the airport served as a base for the Japanese and British armies. In 1993, it was renovated and expanded to become an international and a domestic Malaysian airport. The airport only serves international tourists on a limited basis, but it provides good domestic connectivity to the rest of Malaysia.

3. Senai International Airport

This airport is located in the Kulai district of Johor, in the Malay Peninsula’s southern side. Initially known as Sultan Ismail International Airport, it is Malaysia’s only privately managed passenger airport. At the moment, it serves three international destinations: Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam, and it connects Malaysia’s southern part with roughly 12 cities throughout the country. It is about a 30-minute drive from Johor’s city centre. Shuttle buses from the city centre to the airport are also available at reasonable prices for the convenience of passengers.

4. Penang International Airport

After Kuala Lumpur, Penang is Malaysia’s second most popular tourist destination. The region is rich in colonial history and is best known for the splendours of Georgetown. Penang International Airport is located on the island of Penang’s southern coast, about 50 minutes from George Town. Despite its small size and single passenger terminal, it is Malaysia’s third busiest airport, serving approximately 17 international airlines. It serves two major domestic low-cost carriers in Malaysia – Air Asia and Firefly, and serves as a major cargo hub. The airport is well served by Rapid Penang buses and is well connected via roadways.

5. Kota Kinabalu International Airport

Kota Kinabalu International Airport

Now that we have covered the major airports on the Malay Peninsula, let’s move on to know how many international airports in Malaysia belong to East Malaysia. In Sabah, the main airport that connects foreign visitors to Malaysia’s eastern states is Kota Kinabalu International Airport. It is, in fact, the busiest airport in East Malaysia and the second busiest airport in Malaysia. Kota Kinabalu International Airport is only 20 minutes away by car from the city centre. It serves airlines such as Air Asia, Cathay Pacific, Malaysian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, and Philippines Airlines, to name a few.

6. Kuching International Airport

What began as a 640-meter-long airstrip in Kuching in 1938 has grown to become Malaysia’s fourth busiest airport. Continuous improvements over the years provided the airport with better facilities, such as a new 2,454 metre runway. Today, the airport has grown to be one of the best in Malaysia, with a modern terminal and an ability to welcome five million passengers per year. It serves the Sarawak region of Malaysia as a secondary hub for Malaysia Airlines. The airport, which is about 10 kilometres south of Kuching City Centre, can be reached by bus, but only if the customer is carrying light luggage. Taking a taxi is a convenient option for those not familiar with the area.


To summarise, Malaysia has six international airports to facilitate foreign visitors. These are all in prime locations across the vast country. There are four on the Malay Peninsula and two in East Malaysia. These airports connect to other countries in the region and beyond, making them an essential part of any travel itinerary. Now that you’re aware of these, you can decide which airport is best suited for your Malaysia trip.

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