On my recent trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, I delighted in using many of the public transportation options the city offers. In fact, a trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is a wonderful destination for anyone but particularly for budget travelers. With one of south east Asia’s best public transportation systems, it’s easy to get around Kuala Lumpur (KL) with minimal effort and small cost.
Kuala Lumpur Monorail System – One of my favorite public transportation options in Kuala Lumpur is the monorail system. Cheap and accessible from many of the downtown areas, it also links up with KL’s train system in several areas, making it easy to switch from one rail line to another or a bus line to a rail line. With the average price of a ticket only 1.30-1.60 ringgit (40-45 cents), it’s a cheap form of transportation. You also get to see much of the city as you travel, as the train is so high up. If you want a hair-raising but fun ride, stand at the front of the train behind the driver, where you can see the road and traffic whizzing along on the road directly below. Best place to get on is at the main train station, KL Sentral.
Kuala Lumpur Rapid KL Light Rail – The other popular train system in Kuala Lumpur is the KL Light Rail line. This is a traditional train that runs two lines to and from separate areas of the city. The train system’s two lines are the Ampang Line and the Kelana Jaya Line and, with both lines, they cover much of the downtown area and some of the outskirts. There are 48 stations on the two lines, which cover around 55 kilometers of line so, as you can imagine, most of the important or interesting tourist destinations are accessible from here. Again, the best place to get on the train is KL Sentral as both lines come through here. Tickets are 1 ringgit and up (35 cents and up). My favorite trip is from KL Sentral to the KLCC mall.
Bus Systems in Kuala Lumpur – There are several bus companies running buses throughout KL and beyond. Metrobus and Rapid KL run most of the local buses, with stops around every area of the city. Main bus interchange areas included the Central Market area, (next to the Rapid KL line, where you’ll see lots of bus shelters and buses coming and going), Medan Pasar (near the Masjid Jamek train station), and the Titiwangsa station (connects to KL’s Monorail and train systems). To figure out how to ride the KL buses, buy a bus map at any convenience store or book store. They’re easy to read and list bus numbers for every route. Fares begin at 1 ringgit (35 cents).
KL Ekspres and KL Transit – These two train systems are set up to get to KL International Airport (KLIA) and back. The only difference is the KL Ekspres goes directly to KLIA with no stops. The KL Transit train stops at Bandar Tasik Selatan, Cyberjaya/Putrajaya and Salak Tinggi so, whereas, the KL Ekspres takes 28 minutes to get to the airport or from the airport to Kuala Lumpur, the KL Transit line takes 36 minutes.
Taxis – Taxis in Kuala Lumpur are everywhere and easy to either flag down on the street or climb into at taxi stands all over the city. Fares start at around 3 ringgit ($1) and go up depending on distance and time in the taxi. This means, during rush hour, you’ll spend more as the taxi will simply sit in traffic. Make sure too the driver turns on the meter. It’s mandatory in Malaysia, although some drivers do try to overcharge tourists.