Friday, 25 March 2011

KLIA, Taxis and Trains (travel to and from airport)

Again on the forewarned is forearmed front, asked a question on the MM2H site about the options for travel to and from KLIA.  The responses have given me a pretty clear picture and answered another question in my mind as to which of the travel options was best.

Essentially there are two popular options.  An express train at a return ticket cost on RM 70 or a taxi at about RM 100. On the cost front alone it only really becomes better value to use a taxi if there are three or more people given that a single fare on the train seems to equate to RM 35 each.  For some, just being able to hop into a taxi may prove too much of an incentive but I understand the express train is easily accessible.  There is also the other issue to consider - time.  The express train will take 30 minutes to Kuala Lumpur City City Centre (KLCC) whereas a taxi will take about 50 minutes if there are no traffic problems and longer and if the traffic is bad, sometimes a LOT longer.

Something else which was pointed out, that is certainly interesting is that both at the airport, and around Kuala Lumpur you can buy pre-paid taxi vouchers which by all accounts were introduced so people were less worried about getting ripped off.  Once in KLCC for instance you can buy an RM 10 voucher that will get you to any KL hotel.  How it works and whether there are any problems getting drivers to accept these etc I'll report on when I'm there.  I certainly may look to keep a few of these vouchers in my pocket.

It does seem that in KL at least there are 2 types of taxi.  Blue cars where the 'flag fall' (the fare that the clock starts off at) is RM 6 versus the RM 3 of the other taxis that sound a little more  be of the 'take your life in your hands" variety.  At the airport the attendants will tend to push tourists towards the pricier taxis.  I may be wrong here but it seems you can get one of these taxi vouchers at the aiport too for about RM 100 which would presumably alleviate the problem and will get you to anywhere in KL.  Again I'll report when there and/or amend this post if it becomes clearer.  All taxis are also fitted with meters but getting the drivers to use them can sometimes be a challenge as they seem to prefer to give you a price.  Once you find a decent taxi driver it can be useful (I did this in the UAE a lot) to take their mobile number and use that/those driver(s) on an 'on call' basis whenever you need a taxi.

Thanks to Phil for pointing out (see comments) you could also take a regular bus from KLIA to KL Sentral (and no it's not a typo) Station for a fare of RM 10.

Once you are in the region you want to be there are of course buses which I gather are good, frequent and cheap at RM 2-5.  I will likely use the bus a lot (101 if I have it right) between Bathu Ferringhi, Gurney and Georgetown.


  1. The buses are great in Penang. There are several that work in that location 101 and I think 102 and one or two more maybe.

  2. Another option from KLIA is bus at RM10 taking about 50 min to KL Sentral rail station.


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