|Home > Transportation > Getting there|
Malaysia Transportation - Getting there
Most international flights land at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), (AirAsia flights now land at the new LCC terminal situated 20km from KLIA) although some flights also go to Penang, Langkawi, Johor Bahru, Kuching, Kota Kinabalu and Malacca. KLIA's predecessor, the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang near Kuala Lumpur handles chartered and turboprop aircraft.
National carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS) has an extensive worldwide network coverage and regularly ranks high in airline quality assessments, while no-frill low-cost carrier AirAsia now covers an ever-expanding set of neighboring destinations like Cambodia, Indonesia, Macau, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
* AirAsia, +60 37884-9000 (hotline within Malaysia: 1-300-88-9933)
* Malaysia Airlines, +60 3 7846-3000 (hotline within Malaysia: 1-300-88-3000)
* Berjaya Air, +60 3 7846-8228 (ticketing only); +60 3 2145-2828
Direct sleeper train services connect Bangkok (Thailand) and Butterworth near Penang (Malaysia), also Hat Yai (Thailand) and Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia). There is also a less used eastern route from Hat Yai to Sungai Kolok on the Malaysian border, but there are no through trains to the nearest Malaysian station at Wakaf Bahru (near Kota Bharu).
Comfortable night sleeper and somewhat misnamed daytime "express" trains also connect Singapore to Johor Bahru, running on to either Kuala Lumpur or Kota Bharu. Bizarrely, tickets from Singapore are twice as expensive as those to Singapore; you can save quite a bit by taking the train from Johor Bahru instead.
Immigrating by train. For obscure historical reasons, if you arrive in Malaysia by train from Singapore, your passport will be scanned in but not stamped. Keep your train ticket until you leave the country again, or there may be some hassle on the way out. Likewise, if leaving Malaysia by train you'll get no stamp, but in this direction the Singapore authorities don't mind.
Long-distances buses or coaches into Malaysia run from Thailand, Singapore and Indonesian Borneo.
Major operators of international long-distance buses include:
* Aeroline +60 3 6258-8800 (Malaysia). Luxury buses with meal on-board, power sockets, lounge area etc, from Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya to Singapore from RM70 one-way.
* NiCE. Executive express buses from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore. Normal NiCE buses RM60, extra-roomy double-decker NiCE 2 buses S$47. Departures from the old Kuala Lumpur railway station.
* Transnasional +60 2 6294-7034 (Malaysia). Malaysia's largest bus operator, offers direct buses from through the peninsula to Singapore. Executive/economy buses RM60/26 to Kuala Lumpur.
* Transtar +65 6299-9009. Transtar's 16-seater First Class coaches from KL to Singapore are currently the best around with frills like massaging chairs, onboard attendants and video on demand, but they also cost the most at S$60 one-way to KL. More plebeian SuperVIP/Executive buses are S$25/39, direct service from Genting and Malacca also available. Many use local transport to get to Johor Bahru and then continue from there by long-distance bus, which usually works out cheaper overall.
Several companies operate services from Kuala Lumpur and other cities in Malaysia to Hat Yai in southern Thailand, where direct connections are available to Bangkok and many other Thai destinations. Kota Bharu, on the east coast and close to the border with Thailand, is also esily reached by bus, and there are regular bus services from Sungai Kolok on the opposite side of the border direct to Hat Yai, Phuket, Bangkok, and elsewhere.
* Biaramas Express and Tebakang Express operate express buses between Pontianak, West Kalimantan and Kuching with connections to other Sarawak destinations.
* Biaramas Express operates express buses from Bandar Seri Begawan to several Sarawak destinations.
* Miri Belait Transportation Company operates a direct bus between Kuala Belait in Brunei and Miri, Sarawak. A change of bus at the Sungai Tujoh checkpoint is necessary.
Land crossings are possible from Thailand and Singapore into Peninsular Malaysia, as well as from Brunei and Kalimantan (the Indonesian side of Borneo) into Sarawak. An International Drivers Permit (IDP) is required. See the respective city or state pages for more detailed information.
* Legal checkpoints are at Wang Kelian and Padang Besar in Perlis, Bukit Kayu Hitam in Kedah, Pengkalan Hulu in Perak, Bukit Bunga and Rantau Panjang in Kelantan.
* The two crossings are the Causeway which links Johor Bahru with Woodlands in Singapore, and the Malaysia-Singapore Second Link which links Tanjung Kupang, Johor, with Tuas in Singapore.
* The main crossing is at the Tebedu-Entikong checkpoint which lies on the main Kuching-Pontianak road. There are various other minor border crossings which are used by locals.
* The main crossings are at Sungai Tujoh on the Miri, Sarawak, to Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei) road, and the Kuala Lurah-Tedungan checkpoint which is on the Bandar Seri Begawan to Limbang (Sarawak) road. You can also access the Temburong district of Brunei by road from Limbang (Sungai Pandaruan) and Lawas (Trusan).
Ferries connect various points in Peninsular Malaysia with Sumatra in Indonesia and southern Thailand, Sarawak with Brunei, and Sabah with East Kalimantan in Indonesia and Mindanao in the Philippines.
* Several ferries daily between Muara Ferry Terminal and Labuan.
* Daily ferries between Muara Ferry Terminal and Lawas, Sarawak.
* Daily speedboats, mostly in the morning, between Bandar Seri Begawan jetty and Limbang, Sarawak.
* Batam (Riau Islands): Daily ferries from/to Johor Bahru, Johor.
* Bengkalis (Riau): Three ferries each direction per week to/from Malacca; Three ferries each direction per week to/from Muar, Johor.
* Bintan (Riau Islands): Daily ferries to/from Johor Bahru, Johor.
* Dumai (Riau): At least two ferries a day to/from Port Klang, the port for Kuala Lumpur; Daily ferries to/from Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan; At least two ferries daily to/from Malacca; Three ferries each direction per week to/from Muar, Johor.
* Medan (North Sumatra): Daily ferries from/to Medan's port of Belawan to Penang.
* Nunukan and Tarakan (East Kalimantan): Daily ferries from/to Tawau, Sabah.
* Pekanbaru (Riau): Three ferries each direction per week to/from Malacca.
* Tanjung Balai Asahan (North Sumatra): Ferries from/to Port Klang, the port for Kuala Lumpur.
* Tanjung Balai, Karimun Island (Riau Islands): Daily ferries from/to Kukup on the south-west coast of Johor.
* Ferries run between Zamboanga and Sandakan, Sabah.
* Daily passenger boats between Changi Point and Pengerang, Johor.
* Daily vehicular ferries between Changi Ferry Terminal and Tanjung Belungkor, Johor.
* Satun (Satun Province): Four ferries daily between Tammalang and Kuah, Langkawi (except at Ramadan - 3 daily).
* Tak Bai (Narathiwat Province): Vehicle ferries cross the Golok River (Sungai Golok) from/to Pengkalan Kubur, Kelantan.
Luxury cruises also run from Singapore and occasionally Phuket, Thailand, to Malaysia.
It's possible to walk across the Causeway between Singapore and Johor Bahru at the southern tip of Malaysia. You can also walk in/out of Thailand at Wang Kelian, Padang Besar (both in Perlis, Bukit Kayu Hitam (Kedah), Betong (Perak) and Rantau Panjang (Kelantan).