Johor Bahru Warnings and Dangers
The Malaysian city of Johor Bahru is a classic place to experience Malay culture. When headed to Johor Bahru, you also need to be mindful of local customs and pay close attention to your surroundings.
Be Mindful of Cultural Influences
Johor Bahru is generally more conservative than many places in Europe and the United States. Single women traveling alone have been known to get harassed by men. Solo women travelers should think about traveling with a group or with another female companion instead of alone. Women should also be careful to dress conservatively, even in the heat. Avoid bikinis and shorts, as they are frowned upon.
The Roads and the Police
Do not jaywalk. It is illegal and you could get fined. On the other hand, drivers tend to ignore the posted speed limits without consequences. Do not speed, but keep in mind that you may see cars going very fast all around you when on the expressways. Be particularly careful on the Pasir Gudang Highway leading out of the city, as it has narrow roads and many tanker trucks. Motorcycles are particularly common and drivers are often reckless. Watch for them if you are crossing on foot. Even if you are not breaking any laws, keep in mind that law enforcement officials here are not always honest. They may stop you for no reason. If you are stopped, you might be asked for a bribe. Do not try to fight the corruption in the city. If you go to the nearest station to report such bribery attempts, they may ask you for even more money.
There’s a duty-free zone in the city that offers alcoholic beverages at lower prices. Drink only a few drinks as you do not want to wind up drunk in public or you could get seriously hurt. In certain areas, drinking is not permitted. You will often see publicly posted warning signs that you should heed. Do not bring alcohol into such zones.
Johor Bahru is noted for having a slightly higher crime rate than the rest of the country. Muggings and robbery are more common. Keep this in mind when you are visiting the city. The odds of you personally being a victim of a serious crime are low, but it does happen. Do not wear flashy jewelry and lock all your doors. Many hotels have private security forces that will help you stay safe even in the center of the city.
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about warnings and dangers in Johor Bahru.