TRIP REPORT: Air Asia, Kuala Lumpur - Penang


Submitted by B. Krtolica

I know this isn't a trip that involves destinations within Ex-Yu but it's always good to see what's going on in the rest of the world. My wife and I planned a one day food trip to Penang on Air Asia. Penang is well known for being a food destination. We had a 08.35 departure which meant getting to KL Sentral by 06.00 to catch the KLIA Ekspres. This train takes roughly 25 minutes to Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (a 60km journey which can take over an hour by car) and costs RM55. And for your reference, RM1 works out to be 0.25 USD. KL Sentral was practically dead at this time. Fun fact: it is the largest train station in South East Asia.

KLIA2 was built as a replacement for the previous low cost terminal, which was known as LCCT. It is a well organised terminal and was much better than the LCCT, which was essentially a converted cargo building.

Air Asia have a pretty straight forward self check-in process. As we checked in on their app, all we had to do was to use the machine below to print our boarding passes. And given that this was a food trip, the only baggage we had were our empty stomachs.

A lot of construction going on within KLIA2, which only opened a few years ago.

We arrived at the gate about 10 minutes before the scheduled boarding time of 0835. However, boarding didn't happen till about 0850 and they already had "FINAL CALL" on the FID. Air Asia boasts about having great on time arrival performance but they never seem to leave on time.

Boarding was very orderly and the crew were friendly. The flight was full to the last seat.

If you didn't have a WIFI-enabled device, your entertainment will only consist of the below magazine or staring out the window. The magazine was actually quite well written.

Those with WIFI enabled devices were in luck with on board WIFI being offered. Given the exchange rate, the prices are on par with other airlines. The 10 MB plan works out to be 2.50 USD, where a comparative plan on Air Serbia is around the same. You can however, use the WIFI for free if you only use, which provides an onboard meal/drinks menu, travel guides, games, music and some selected video content.

The lavatory was pretty clean, if basic. That said, this is still a low cost airline.

We arrived about 5 minutes behind schedule at PEN.

Penang Airport is Malaysia's third busiest, after Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu. Fairly busy at this time of the day.

There are a few choices for transport to/from PEN. We opted to use Uber, which is very well priced and you're almost always guaranteed to have a good experience. Taxis in Malaysia are notorious for gouging passengers and refusing to use their meters. Uber, and a local competitor called Grab, have been well embraced by locals and tourists.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed our small trip report.

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  1. Anonymous09:33

    Nice report and I'm happy to see foreign airlines/destinations will also be featured.

    Having flown through Asia a bit I find that Asian LCCs generally have much better standards in terms of service than European ones and are less stingy when it comes to what they offer.

  2. Anonymous11:03

    "I know this isn't a trip that involves destinations within Ex-Yu"

    I think you could have left this out. Of course it's interesting to see destinations from the rest of the world.

  3. Anonymous11:59

    Very nice trip report. It's nice to see whats happening outside Ex-Yu. Hope you've enjoyed your meal in PEN.

  4. Anonymous16:32

    I flew Air Asia in 2009 on KUL-BKK and BKK-SIN, the latter on Thai Air Asia. I remember it as being extremely cheap and an overall good experience.
    Glad, though, that the LCCT is no longer there.

    1. Anonymous16:33

      Oh, and thanks for the nice report.


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