Monthly Archives: April 2012

Malaysia. Purchase Denied Updated

Malaysian Travel Advisory.

World Wide acceptance of MasterCard & Visa? I think not. Since I have been in the Kuala Lumpar metro area. I have been denied purchases from a grocery store up to a brand name outlet (Canon) at a mega mall. All accept MC & Visa, but if you do not have a “Chip” on the front of your card it will not be accepted at establishments that only have the “Passover” (Scan) method for your card. These chips seem to be only for cards (Credit / Debit) issued within Malaysia, which seems to be most if not all cards.

The establishments who use this method claim they cannot swipe your card. Maybe, but I find it hard to believe there is not a backup such as typing in your credit card number. Most establishments do not solely use the Pass Over method to charge your card though. But if they do, be prepared to have a wad of Ringgets in your pocket.

Well, I guess I will be buying that Canon on my next visit to the U.S. But what the hell, they are cheaper there as well as most electronics.

Is this method good for the Malaysian economy with the mass of Tourists who now visit MY? I think not.

This is the first country I have visited with this restriction.
Are all banks here owned by the Govt.? Hmmm…

As I mentioned, most shops do not employ this method, but be prepared for it.

Update to the Original Post:

As I entered ACE Hardware recently in Malaysia I noticed they had the device for reading credit cards via the Pass Over Chip method. Eager to test out another establishment, I proceeded to buy something I really didn’t even need. 🙂

Upon presenting my chipless MasterCard, the clerk asked for help on how to process it without asking me for a card that did have the chip. I liked this, the clerk was making an effort. The ACE employees, still unsure how to process the card, waved over a supervisor who seemed confused also and promptly disappeared into a back room “with” my card, didn’t like that part.

The store manager soon appeared and instructed the clerk on how to enter the card number manually by utilizing the 3 digit security code on the back. The backup method I have always seen in the past, U.S. or elsewhere.

It seems it is up to the establishments discretion on whether to go through the “hassle” of manual entry using a keypad to complete the sale. ACE did handle the process professionally and apologized for the inconvenience. This was a matter of training the staff and of an establishment desiring to make the sale and gain a returning customer.

I still carry a wad of ringgets though.

I would love some feedback on this from anyone.

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Categories: Solo Travel

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Categories: Solo Travel

The Batu Caves, Malaysia

My visit to the Batu Caves, which is approximately 13km north of Kuala Lumpar turned out to be a great cultural learning trip and is possible in a half day.

When pulling into the parking area you can’t help but notice the 42.7 meter high of Lord Murugan, built of concrete and covered with 300 liters of gold paint.

Directly behind this huge statue are the 272 steps leading up to the Batu Caves, made of limestone and reported to be as old as 400 million years old.

The entrance to the caves is through the main cave named “The Temple Cave”, spawning off from this cave are smaller ones such as “The Dark Cave” which require a tour guide. The Temple Cave is 100 meters to the top and has one large hole and several small holes which provide natural light inside during the daytime.

The Temple Cave is lined with Hindu Shrines and Hindu Deities built over the years and is considered one of the Hindu’s largest places of worship outside of India.

You definitely want to bring your camera for this; there are smaller structures outside of the caves along with Indian vendors selling their wares, and swarms of Long Tailed Macaque monkeys.  Be careful not too feed them though, you may lose a finger as they can become aggressive when being fed.  Otherwise, they will come close enough for great pics.

On our way out we stopped for a snack of pressed seaweed and fresh coconut water, quite good.

I highly recommend the caves for a local excursion if you’re in the Kuala Lumpar area.

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Categories: Solo Travel