Handshakes are generally suffice for both men and women, although some Muslim ladies may acknowledge an introduction to a gentleman with a nod of her head and smile.
The traditional greeting of “salam” resembles a handshake with both hands but without the grasp. The man offers both hands, lightly touches the visitor’s outstretched hands, and then brings his hands to his chest to mean, “I greet you from my heart”. The visitor should reciprocate the “salam”.
Greeting by hugging and kissing is not generally practiced in Malaysia. However this is becoming more common amongst the western educated and young. It is also customary to remove one’s shoes when entering a Malaysian home.
The right hand is always used when giving and receiving objects. Pointing is normally done using the thumb as using the right forefinger is considered rude.