Information on the internet was overwhelming. I have to ask my friends some tips in crossing the border from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore. Despite that I have all the information that we need, we were not prepared to circumstances that we have not anticipate.
From our Hotel in Kula Lumpur to Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS)
Our hotel is strategically located which across to it is the Pudu Bus Terminal and LRT stations. Like any other first-time travelers, we get on a wrong train. We found out after 4 stops from Pudu because we were discussing our trip and a Filipina heard our conversation. She asked “Are you going to Singapore? You get to a wrong train!” Just in time for the train to stop and unload passengers. She told us which train to board once we get off and she waved goodbye and said, “take care.”
Whew! We almost missed our bus to Singapore.
Tip: Researched first or ask your hotel receptionist for directions.
From “I don’t know which train station we where” to TBS
Filipino’s are everywhere in Kuala Lumpur! 🙂 We already onboard to the right train going to the bus terminal. While talking to a fellow passenger, a Filipina interrupted our conversation and asked, “are you Filipinos?” Then she gave us tips on getting around Singapore and Malaysia. Her parting words, “amping mo. Malaysia is like Manila.”
We booked our tickets online thru http://www.busonlineticket.com. It’s the same online ticket reservation site for trains going to other destinations aside from Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. It accepts credit card and PayPal as mode of payments.
One way ticket to Johor Bahru cost us RM35.00 each. There are various bus companies going to Johor Bahru, but I suggest that you choose bus companies that are based in Singapore.
Beware of scam
Because we were overwhelmed by the information we found on the internet, we choose the first bus company that caters our preferred schedule – 9:00PM which was the StarQistna Express.
I know we were already in Johor Bahru because I saw signages. Our driver instructed us to transfer to another StarQistna Express bus that will take us to Singapore.
I was already dubious because nowhere in the blogs mentioned that you’re going to transfer buses and even in the fine print of the ticket mentioned about it. But, still, we follow his instructions and board on the next bus.
We have our passport stamped at the immigration office in Malaysia. Probably 5 minutes drive from the immigration office, he told us to go down and hurry up. He said something that we don’t understand except for one word – Indonesians then he gave us a smirked.
I have my passport stamped in less than 5 minutes at the immigration office in Singapore and followed the caucasian as she walked through the exit. When we arrived at the parking lot, our bus is NOWHERE TO BE FOUND.
I thought that there might be a delay on his end in processing his papers ‘coz what I have understood vehicles even commercial buses have to go through the same immigration process.
We asked the police officer at the parking area and she told us that our bus drove right away after his paperwork were processed.
Lo and behold, we paid additional RM15 each for a bus that will take us to Beach Road, Singapore.
Research and check online forum first
On our way back to Kuala Lumpur from Singapore, we booked our tickets through different bus company – Pacific Express & Tours for S$20 each.
This time, our Singaporean driver was very kind and courteous. He gave us tips and make sure that all our bags are with us every time we offload his van for the immigration process. He also told us that next time we should check the online forum first before booking our tickets to avoid being scammed.
There you have it! Our DIY crossing border story. Have you also experienced being scammed while crossing borders in Asia? Chime in! Share your story and tips through the comment section below.