Traveling from KL to Penang

2018-06-08T02:00:01+08:00By |Lifestyle, Travel|

Tips & choices comparison for optimising traveling from KL to Penang (and vice-versa or back again)


KL to PEN Options

  • Drive
  • Bus (Coach)
  • Train (Eletric Train Service)
  • Fly






  1. More luggage space in boot & back seat
  2. Cheaper costs if you have 3 or more passengers
  3. You get to drive your own vehicle at the destination (not needing to reply on public transportation/others)
  4. Stop at any rest stops for however long you like on the way


  1. Costs more including fuel & tolls especially if traveling alone
  2. Tiring drive of ~4 hours each way


  1. Take turns driving with your partner
  2. If tired/micro-napping, take a quick 10 min rest at a break area which helps tremendously!
  3. Use the time to listen to podcasts (especially on personal finances ;))



Bus (Coach)


  1. Affordable at 60 (or less)
  2. You can rest/read/play with your phone while on the bus
  3. Served drink/snack + toilet on board


  1. Fixed bus schedule which may not meet your preferred travel times
  2. Safety concerns (pick a reputable bus company like Aeroline or Nice!)
  3. Travel time may be longer at 4-5 hours


  1. Best bus seats are in the middle (front feel inertia, back the bumps & road condition) & left side (turnings are slower)
  2. Choose a single seater if you are traveling alone else the aisle seat so it’s easier to go in/out of your seat
  3. Aeroline & Nice have frequent member programs which may be worthwhile if you travel frequently



Train (ETS)


  1. Affordable at 59 (Gold) / 79 (Platinum – less stops)
  2. You can rest/read/play with your phone while on the bus
  3. Relatively fast & comfortable with shared TV screen, wifi, washroom & f&b (at a price)
  4. Multiple trains available at different times


  1. Travel time may be longer at 4-5 hours
  2. It is a hassle to take the ferry / drive to the mainland if you are coming from Penang Island
  3. If you’re afraid of the cold… It’s pretty cold!


  1. Select seats facing in the direction you are traveling for better comfort
  2. Did we mention the cold? Remember to bring along a jacket/shawl/hug partner 😛
  3. Don’t take the silver/older trains unless you are looking for a “long & scenic” ride
  4. Besides friend/public transport to the ferry terminal, consider driving to Butterworth / BM & parking your car at (~RM12 daily) /nearby (~RM5) the train station





  1. Faster – arguably as you need to factor in early arrival pre-departure/check-in & traveling from the airport (KLIA/2 are quite out of the way) to your destination
  2. Increased comfort
  3. Can be potentially cheaper during promotions/sales (Sign up as a member for notifications + member points). Especially for AirAsia sales


  1. Higher costs especially if booking last minute
  2. Limited free luggage space (and expensive to purchase additional luggage space)


  1. Fly using Fireflyz if you are heading to a location nearer to Subang (Also eligible for BonusLink points/redemption)
  2. Malindo is often the cheapest but often flights are cancelled/delayed. Caveat emptor!
  3. MAS is an option to consider as well as now Economy flights are priced to be quite competitive with budget airlines (Business & First class still competing with full service airlines)
  4. Read more tips on Travel & Flying




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