Cheapest Way to Kuala Lumpur – By Bus or Cheap Flights?

by Su-Ann

Bus to KL, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur (KL) is a popular weekend getaway destination for many Singaporeans. Unlike going to Johor where the typical transport is by land, there are many ways to go to KL – by land or by air. However, which is a better option? Is taking a bus to KL cheaper than flying to KL? And if it so, how much cheaper can it be?

Let’s do a quick comparison on the total cost and time required to travel from Singapore to KL by the different modes of transport available.

Bus to KL from JB

This is the DIY-route: take a bus into Johor Bahru (JB) by Malaysia’s Causeway Link. Bus services that go into JB are yellow Causeway Link buses (CW1 and CW2) or Singapore bus 170. The trip cost S$2 one way. After clearing immigration in both Singapore and Malaysia, continue on the bus to Larkin Terminal. Here, you can get coach transfers to a number of destinations within Malaysia. I have seen prices as low as RM20 to KL from JB.

Total Travel time: Arrive at Larkin terminal 30 minutes before departure (have some time to eat breakfast – there’s a Dunkin’ Donuts here!) + Singapore to Larkin travel time 1 hour + coach travel time varies, from 4.5-8 hours depending on number of stops to be made.

Cost: Under S$50. Can go as low as RM20 for return trip + transfer from bus terminals to final destination.

Book Your Bus Tickets Online
Whether to travel from Singapore or Johor Bahru, bus tickets to Kuala Lumpur and other destinations in Malaysia can be booked online at or

Express Bus to KL from Singapore

Express buses are the dedicated coaches that take between 20-40 passengers per coach. Prices are competitive as there are a number of established companies: Try Grassland Express, Konsortium or Transtar. Each company has their own arrangements for drop-off and pick-up in Singapore and KL, so factor this in when selecting which company. Some buses might drop off at your hotel destination, but few will guarantee, unless previously stated.

Total Travel time: Arrive terminal at least 30 minutes before departure + coach travel time 6-8 hours

Cost: Between S$50-S$75. Coach fare can start as low as S$28 and averages S$60 for return trip depending on timing + transfer from pick-up/drop-off to final destination.

Luxury Coach to KL from Singapore

Luxury Coaches are separate class from Express Coaches: these luxury coaches feature plenty of comforts such as designated supersized, ergonomic /massage-chair seats, meals, Wi-Fi, entertainment (video-on-demand). They also take fewer passengers per coach, and typically have more or centralized pick-up/drop-off locations. Try Aeroline or Five Star coach. You can also call the other coach companies and ask for their “premium” or “business-class” coach rates.

Total Travel time: Arrive at least 30 minutes at designated pick-up point + coach travel time 6-8 hours.

Cost: Between S$75-S$100. Coach fare typically averages between S$60-S$100 for return trip + transfer from pick-up/drop-off to final destination.

Cheap Flights to KL

There are always cheap flights to KL offered by Jetstar, Tiger airways or Air Asia, especially if you book early, or at the last minute. I have found return flights to KL from S$52. These are no-frills flights: you pay extra for checking-in baggage, for changing flights, for a drink, and so on. Be alert and read all “add-on” charges – they can add up and make it less value-for-money.

Air Asia

Total Travel Time: 30 minutes before flight + 30-45 minutes flight + 30 minutes to KL Sentral

Cost: Between S$50-S$100. Airfares can go as low as S$35 (including taxes) but averages S$75 (including taxes) for return flight + airport transfer to final destination

Fly Premium from Singapore to KL

These are the two traditional options: Malaysian Airlines, Silkair and Singapore Airlines. Popular with business travelers or luxury-seeking travelers. The date of travel can affect the price, as does the airline of choice. This option also offers the greatest flexibility among the other options.

Total Travel time: 30 minutes before flight + 30-45 minutes flight + 30 minutes to KL Sentral

Cost: Between $250-S$375. Airfares can start as low as S$150 but averages S$250-S$300 (including taxes) for return flight, depending on airline + airport transfer to final destination

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