Trains and Railways of Malaysia
I decided to write about his impressions of travel in Malaysia by train from Butterworth (near Penang island) to Kuala Lumpur, and at the same time to collect and share information about trains and Railways in Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand in the hope that it will be useful to someone. Photos is not much, but I think that the General idea of the trains, route network and how to use them, it will be clear and without a photo. Some of the information taken from the site seat61.com (a great website where you can find a bunch more information about trains), and official Internet sources mentioned later in the text.
Moving on trains in Malaysia, as well as trips to neighbouring Singapore and Thailand by train is the cheapest way to travel. Especially if you're not fussy and be prepared to inconveniences such sedentary travel or travel in the reserved seat (and as you will see below, to hypothermia). Ride in the coupe will cost almost as much as the flights Asian budget airlines. Well, if you are night crossings, it is possible to save on the hotel: to be discharged at 12 o'clock, take a walk while waiting for the train, night on the road and by the afternoon check in to the hotel in another city. And the ticket for the night train is cheaper than a night in a mediocre hotel.
When you plan your trip to Malaysia in October 2011, we (me and my companion) had already worked the entire route between the cities and the Islands, and bought the tickets for the domestic flights two months before you travel. Had only one open section of the route Penang–Kuala Lumpur. Initially planned to do it on the bus, buying tickets on the spot. But so eager to do and to prepare in advance, which was considered the question about the train ride. After collecting and analyzing the information, it became clear to us that the train trip will be even cheaper than the bus. Besides, you can take an overnight train that runs every night that will allow you to save time: to spend the night and sleep in the train, instead of having to sit all day locked up the car and look out the window at the passing scenery (and possibly very beautiful), it seemed a good idea...
Routes and lines
Trains in Malaysia only go for the mainland on the Malay Peninsula. There are two lines:
- Main line (Main line). The main line passes along the Western coast of Malaysia. Connects Singapore and Bangkok via Kuala Lumpur and other cities of Malaysia.
- The Jungle line (the Jungle line). Jungle Line is closer to the East coast from Singapore to Khota Bahru city (Tumpat), located near the border of Malaysia and Thailand.
Look at the railway map of South-East Asia are on the map, but the station it is only the largest (click on map to enlarge):
The main line
The main line starts at Singapore, through Kuala Lumpur and other cities in Malaysia, going on to Thailand and ends in the capital Bangkok. It passes along the Western coast of the Malay Peninsula, which you can see on the map. Of course, on the Thai side there is already a railway of Thailand.
On this line you can safely move between all three States, but to come all the way from Bangkok to Singapore or Vice versa, we have to make changes from train to train (excluding the Orient Express). Direct train between Bangkok and Singapore.
In order to plan your route is most convenient, use the table of scheduling the movement of trains here: http://seat61.com/Malaysia.htm. Using the table you can plan the entire route from Bangkok to Singapore do without the nights and long stops. If you have trouble understanding the data tables (everything in English), write in the comment to the article at the bottom of the page, will help you understand.
The Jungle line (the Jungle line)
Another branch of the railway Malaysia is closer to the East coast and romantic is called "Line Jungle" or "Jungle line" or "Line in the Jungle", as someone more like it. The train does pass through beautiful jungle and the trip will be very interesting, but long. The line originates in Singapore (or rather branches off from the main line at Gemas), and ends in the capital of the Malay state of Kelantan in Kota Bharu (Khota Bahru) at the station of Tumpat.
This city is located on the East coast and near the border of Thailand. Khota Bahru cannot be called a tourist centre. This is a very conservative town with strict Muslim traditions. Although to say that there is absolutely nothing to do with tourists, it is impossible. To spend the night in one of the hotels at Kota Bharu, to walk around the city or visit one of its many museums will be quite interesting.
To continue the path from Khota Bahru further North in Thailand, you need to cross the border by bus or taxi, and continue your journey by train from the station of Sungai Kolok.
Plan your route on this line, you can use the schedules listed in the table here: http://seat61.com/Malaysia.htm
To postpone the purchase of tickets did not, and as soon as the opportunity came to purchase the desired date (available for purchase 30 days prior to the date of departure) on the website http://www.ktmb.com.my/ we did.
To take the compartment were not fundamentally, because I wanted to save. All the hardships of moving to a sitting position and was ready to test. In the end I opted for the cheapest for the sedentary train second class air-conditioned car.
In fact, Penang where we had to go, there are no railroads. Because it is an island. Penango the nearest railway station is located in the city of Butterworth (Butterworth), from the tickets and bought. Two tickets Butterworth-Kuala Lumpur cost us 68 ringgit that about $ 680, so many have written off credit / debit card. Paid Visa Electron card with your local provincial Bank, meekly swallowed.
Before booking you need to register on the website to enter passport details, gender, and select a car number and location. After payment directly from the screen were printed out e-tickets. They are, incidentally, still preserved there (on the website) under my account.
All the tickets were purchased, hotels booked, only had to wait for the promised hour...
Classes of cars
Cars/tickets for trains in Malaysia are divided into classes, among which the sitting (seat) or lying (sleeper). If you decide to take a sitting, then you can take the 2nd class (2nd class), and not to pay for first. They are almost identical. For short trips on some trains have 3rd class that also can book if you want to save. Before booking tickets on the carrier's website you can see pictures of all cars on the inside. All cars are air-conditioned.
- Seated first class (1st class seats), AFC. Air-conditioned cars with LCD TV, a fairly comfortable wide seats with reclining backs and rotating around its axis so that you can look forward or backward during the movement of the train at will.
- Seated second class (2nd class seats), ASC. Different from the first class a little more narrow seats and can't turn around a vertical axis. Decent recline. Much cheaper than first class.
- Sedentary third class (3rd class seats), AEC. As in the first and second sitting class, soft seat, located just tighter and look a little more modest. And so, it is ideal for short journeys.
- Second sleeper class (2nd class sleeper), ADNS. Something like our reserved seat.
- Sleeping first class (1st class sleeper), 2PLUS. As a coupe from us.
- Bedroom Deluxe (deluxe 'Selesa' sleeper with private shower & toilet), ADNF. Compartment with its own shower and toilet.
There are still classes ADNFB, ADNS2, etc. which are derived from ADNF, ADNS, etc., respectively.
After spending four days in Penang, it's time to say goodbye to this wonderful island. In Penang we loved it. More than Langkawi, with whom he is often trying to compare. But, in my opinion, this is a completely different island. It is impossible to compare them.
After having left the hotel at 12 o'clock and leaving things at the conservation reception last hours decided to walk to Georgetown. But on the street he met his new friend from Holland, with whom and then we have fate on Langkawi, Penang. As a result, these final hours we spent talking to him about anything, and finally photographed.
The time of departure of the train was coming, and not to run after the departing train (the train left at 23 hours) 18 hours we said goodbye to the Dutchman, perhaps now forever, taken from the hotel a modest Luggage and moved to the station in Butterworth.
Station in Butterworth is located directly at the pier of the ferry, which shuttles regularly between Penang and the mainland approximately every 20 minutes. To the jetty in Penang Weld Quay ferry, got on the free tourist bus, on the way, mentally saying goodbye to all the attractions of the city, we clambered over the last few days. Coming near the ferry landing, we rushed after the crowd, and ran right where I need to be sent to the Butterworth ferry. For the ferry we paid nothing, but simply passed on Board. Somehow, for steam you need to pay only from Butterworth to Penang, and back, it's free.
Everything happened very quickly and we knew it: just got off the bus, and now the ferry sails away already, and separates us from Penang. Happily, a cool island of Penang...
Where and how to buy tickets? The cost of tickets
The purchase of tickets for trains in Malaysia, starts 30 days before the date of departure of the train.
Buy tickets the easiest way on the official website of the Railways of Malaysia www.ktmb.com.myby paying their credit card. To pay quite suitable plastic cards Visa and MasterCard, issued by Russian banks. You will receive an e-ticket type e-ticket on the plane. Before buying, you will need to choose the train and class of carriage, type of ticket (adult/child) to register, specify your passport data, choose the number of the car (label) and place in it (the slot). The whole procedure is very simple and straightforward. The interface is in English. Unfortunately, you will not be able to purchase online tickets to/from Bangkok.
You can also buy tickets at any railway station in Malaysia or Singapore. In the checkout you will be able to purchase a ticket to Bangkok, but will not be able to buy from Bangkok.
You can book and buy your ticket via e-mail or the phone numbers listed on the website www.ktmb.com.my. In this case, you will have access to tickets to and from Bangkok including.
Children's tickets for children from 4 to 11 years and seniors over 60 years, sold almost two times cheaper than adults. Children up to 3 years old inclusive travel free of charge.
This crazy feature with the cost of tickets, if you are going to buy them, departing from Singapore. For some strange oddities the ticket price will be converted from the currency of Malaysia in currency of Singapore one-to-one, and as a result, acquiring the ticket out of Singapore, you will be forced to pay for the ticket twice. Even if you purchase tickets on the website of the shipping carrier and your itinerary starts in Singapore, still overpay, and the site has almost three times more expensive. To circumvent this injustice can getting two separate ticket on the same train from Singapore to Johor Bahru on the Malaysian side (and pay for it on the Singapore prices, but a small distance), and a second ticket from Johor Bahru to Kuala Lumpur at Malaysian prices already. If we fail to purchase a ticket Singapore - Johor Bahru on the website, buy it at the box office in Singapore. You can also buy a ticket from Johor Bahru to Kuala Lumpur at Malaysian prices, and to Johor Bahru bus or taxi.
The ferry ride from Penang to Betterworse took about 20 minutes. And now we are on the mainland and confidently "float" along with the human flow under a covered walkway to who knows where. A stream of people rushed to the left for the exit to the bus station and we only two of us turned right at the sign for the Railway Station.
Already crept into the idea that we go somewhere. But finally it seemed to the railroad with wagons, and it became clear that we are on the right track.
Inside the station was completely empty and quiet. Before departure of the train was still quite far away, but on the platform the train was not. The cashier station is also empty, and again crept into the idea: "something is wrong. Maybe we're not on the station we came from." After all, in the hands of the us was just unhappy e-ticket printout unconfirmed by anything. When did the cashier and confirmed that everything is in order and train our tickets sent out, we finally relaxed.
To pass the time before sending it, decided to take a walk on the Butterworth, but at the same time and dinner. A little down the surrounding streets, we found at the bus station "street court" where the food was delicious at 15 ringgit for two.
Back at the station, we found there's still a few people, but their number is clearly not inferior even to fill one carriage. The train was already standing on the platform, but the landing hasn't opened yet...
How to get on the train to...
The main railway station in Kuala Lumpur is the KL Sentral station. This is the main transport hub of the city, where the city's metro, monorail, airport Express train, commuter trains.
When searching for and booking of tickets, you need to search the station Sentral Kuala Lumpur (though there is a line in Kuala Lumpur, it's not what you need).
Read more about the station in Kuala Lumpur see here, and on other ways to get to Kuala Lumpur here.
To get to Penang, it's best to go to the station in the city of Butterworth (Butterworth). The station is located within walking distance from the ferry that takes you to the pier Weld Quay in George town in Penang for 20 minutes and 1.2 ringgit (12 rubles). The ferries run very frequently. To get from the station to Penang by taxi or bus makes no sense, because you have to make a big detour.
Station in Butterworth is a stub. Trains No. 20 and No. 21 Kuala Lumpur – hat Yai (Hat Yai, Thailand) passing through Butterworth on the station does not drive and make a stop at the station Bukit Mertajam at 11 kilometers from the city.
Information on how to get to Penang, read here.
To get on the train to Langkawi island, you will need to buy tickets to Arau or Alor Setar. With these stations will have to take a little trip by taxi to the Marina and then by ferry across to Langkawi.
Read more about how to get to Langkawi, please click here.
Through Malacca does not pass the railway, but the nearest railway station is Tampin is located only 30 kilometers away. The station is at Pulau Sebang (railway station Tampin on the map), and through it passes the main railway line to Malaysia, which stretches South to Singapore and North to Bangkok.
To get from the railway station to Malacca by bus or taxi. The fare is unreasonably high for such a short route (about MR50), so it is better to use the bus which is slightly more than RM4.
Read more about how to get to Malacca, please click here.
In Singapore, the final stop of this train station to Woodlands Train Checkpoint. The station is located about 20 kilometers North of the city of Singapore. Here is passport and customs control. To get to Woodlands you can take a taxi (about 30 Singapore dollars from downtown), metro (station is Woodlands MRT and then bus, about 3.3 SGD). On the road it is necessary to establish at least an hour.
When they announced boarding, a few passengers flocked to the platform to the carriages. And we followed. As I said earlier, there were very few passengers. We found his car, and was it the only passengers.
After a time, came two passengers and a young malies, like our guide who showed us no interest and went about his business. When the car was already moving, he approached us and asked for tickets. I stretched out a trembling hand print our e-tickets, expecting that now begins the scandal and he will say something like: "This is not the right tickets, I don't know" or "You have to change those prints for real tickets at the box office". But our guide almost not even glancing at the outstretched paper, validated them making a couple of holes and ran on. No passports, no questions asked. E-tickets worked. Guess he just had a list of passengers, and so he "nafig" did not need any passports and tickets. Now ahead of us was waiting for Kuala Lumpur. There we rode for the first time...
Orient Express (Orient Express)
There is only one direct train from Bangkok to Singapore and back. It is a tourist train that runs for three days. In the way of entertain tourists tours with a stop at the river Kwai in Kanchanaburi (North of Bangkok) and a walk in Georgetown Penang. The cost of this pleasure starts from 2 440$. The train 1-3 times per month according to the special schedule. Information about the schedule, cost and booking can be found on the website http://www.orient-express.com
Inside the train of the second class everything was quite decent, though, and the seats were shabby and old. Right in front of us on the wall was pinned a huge TV that all the way around the circle showed tourist videos about Malaysia and advertising. I wonder who designed the tourist spots?
Neighbouring car was seated first class carriage. There was not even a single passenger. A little walk along it, I appreciated the notion that we knowingly opted for second class and saved almost half. First class from our car differed only other chairs (there are three in each row instead of four and they rotate around its axis), and the fact that the transfer carriage is separated by a glass door, and we had plastic. There was some kind of bar, but what they sell is not clear, because everything was closed (passengers do not).
All the way the train made a dozen short stops where our car is stopped by other passengers (all to the end of the trip we were in the car eight).
We planned to sleep during the overnight trip, and in the morning with new strength to start walking around Kuala Lumpur to the moment until you settle at the hotel. Of Luggage we had at least, so this idea was quite feasible, if not... if not for the damn air conditioning in the car. They were working at full capacity and not regulated.
We were not ready for this turn (we have absolutely no warm clothes), and froze as dogs. Sleep failed. I never would have thought that a tropical country can be so cold. It was cold concrete, and the local passengers were ready for it, podstawa from bags, jackets and blankets. And we had all the way to huddle to each other, and at bus stops to go to get warm outside. In short, the advice is: if you are recovering on a train in Malaysia, especially at night, take warm clothes.
In General, the impressions from trains to Malaysia remained good, only messed up the air conditioning. In Kuala Lumpur we arrived starved and not slept, and another half hour sitting basking in KL Sentral before heading further into the hotel. Finding on one level KL Sentral station, the underground city of Kuala Lumpur, we waited for the train and went into the car. "And it's cold here. Damn air conditioning!"...
🕒 December 6, 2018
In this topic, we discuss and ask questions with regards to movement around Malaysia by train. The full report with practical information about trains and Railways of Malaysia to be on a separate page http://nashaplaneta.net/articles1/malaysia-poesda.php. Hmm ... here is just a review of the trip with photos. When you plan your trip to Malaysia in October 2011 we (me and my companion) had already worked the entire route between the cities and the Islands, and bought the tickets for the domestic flights two months before you travel. Had only one open section of the route Penang–Kuala Lumpur. Initially planned to do it on the bus, buying tickets on the spot. But so eager to do and to prepare in advance, which was considered the question about the train ride. After collecting and reviewing the information it became clear to us that the train trip will be even cheaper than the bus, besides you can take an overnight train, which runs Agence that will allow you to save time: to spend the night and sleep in the train, instead of having to sit all day locked up the car and look out the window at the passing scenery (and possibly very beautiful), it seemed like a good idea. To postpone the purchase of tickets did not, and as soon as the opportunity came to purchase the desired date (available for purchase 30 days prior to the date of departure) on the website http://www.ktmb.com.my/ we did. To take the compartment were not fundamentally, because I wanted to save. All the hardships of moving to a sitting position and was ready to test. In the end I opted for the cheapest for the sedentary train second class air-conditioned car. In fact, Penang where we had to go, there are no railroads. After all ...
Help to understand! Everywhere write about a night train from KL to Singapore, but if you go to the KTM website, they show this route only one daily train # 1 and everything! And this is only the preliminary search, if you go under the registered name, the system even station Kuala Lumpur does not issue already in the list of stations of departure.. ...
Check again on other dates. I just did a search on KTMB under your login. On 21 October between Singapore and KL is given from three trains, including night (see screenshot). You as the station of departure it is necessary to specify Woodlads, the terminal station to KL - Sentral Kuala Lumpur. All the trains to and from Kuala Lumpur look at the station Sentral Kuala Lumpur. All tested personally, no doubt. PS if you asked the same question in the next branch as a guest, I said to you, too. And again the link How to get to Kuala Lumpur by train, where I about it (Sentral Kuala Lumpur) had been writing.
Hello, I would Like to know what is the duration of the journey from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore? Thank you in advance. ...
8 hours ...