Penang International Airport is situated at Bayan Lepas. Seems to be the third busiest airport in Malaysia after KLIA and Kota Kinabalu International Airport. The Airport was under expansion for the past two years and now, its almost completed with some minor renovation work around the departure lounge.
I stayed in Tune Hotel Penang. I didnt take taxi from airport to Tune Hotel. From airport, you can take Rapid Penang. Go to downstair and find the Rapid Penang bus counter. Bus number is U401. You only pay 2 Ringgit (i was there last year).
Bus will go and stop to Komtar. From Komtar, you can walk 5-10 minute to Tune Hotel. Check on the google map. It will give you the direction clearly.
When you leave the departure hall at Bayan Lepas Airport, head for the taxi counter. Tell the lady behind the counter which hotel you are heading for and she will issue you with a voucher. You pay her for the voucher and you head for the taxi stand. Taxi driver takes the voucher and gives you the counterfoil. No worries about being fleeced! No worries about jumping meters when caught in a jam. If you are feeling generous, you may tip the driver.
If you really want to stint on the taxi, then take a bus to Komtar. Will cost you a song...but you have to WAIT...AND WAIT...AND WAIT!
When we arrived at Penang airport in April 2008, my wife's checked suitcase had been broken open and the contents rifled. nothing apparently was stolen but then there was nothing of intrinsic value in the case. We had flown from KL with a budget airline.
A week later we flew with the same airline from Penang to Bangkok. When we retrieved our checked suitcases in Bangkok we saw that the combination locks were missing from both suitcases and again the contents had been rifled. I found in my suitcase a dirty and damp towel which was not mine. Again nothing appeared to be missing.
The budget airline replaced the zip tag which had been broken off my case and said they were only liable for damage to the case. They compiled a report of the incident in case I needed to claim off my travel insurance.
We can only assume that the damage to our suitcases and attempted theft probably happened at Penang airport after check-in.
I was at the Penang Airport on July 28, 2006.
The taxi fare from airport depend on your destination on which of the 7 Zones in Penang Island that you are going.
Zone 1 - 14 Ringgit, Zone 2 - RM 22, Zone 3 - RM26 (Bukit Jambul, Hote Equatorial, Hotel Istana), Zone 4 - RM31, Zon 5 - RM38 (Geogetown, Hotel Berjaya), Zon 4 - RM47 (Tanjung Bunga (Hotel Copthorne), Zon 6 - RM60 Batu Ferringhi (Hotel Golden Sands)
1) Per taxi allowed 4 person
2) 50% surcharge during 12am - 6am
Taxi's fromr the airport are easy. Just go to the Taxi Counter on the right hand side of the terminal and purchase a voucher, cost to BF was 60MR in March 06, you then take the voucher outside to the taxi line where you are allotted a taxi.
Returning from BF to the Airport was 50MR, you can organise this from individual taxi driver or tour company, the hotels will charge you more.
Air Asia probably offers the widest selection of cheap flights for air travel in SE Asia. They are criticized for not being the most reliable carrier, however out of the 6 flights I took with them, only one was late by 10 minutes.
Air Asia usually has a daily flight between Bangkok and Penang, as well as 3-4 daily between KL and Penang. Depending on time of departure and how far ahead you book your ticket, a one-way flight from BKK (1hr 50min) will cost you as little as $50, and a one-way flight from KL (50 min) as little as $20.
Bottom-line: For the budget traveler, Air Asia is a great way to get around SE Asia. They might not always be on time, but you get what you pay for, and all things considered it's a good value.
Just take note that the newly renovated airport is some 20km from the city, Georgetown. You can either take a cab, a public bus or rent a car from the expensive rental car agencies over here. Here's some useful info:
Buy your coupons from the terminal. It'll cost you less than RM40 . The ride to town is about 20min, thanks to the new Bayan Lepas Highway.
Yellow Bus #83 goes to Pengkalan Weld and Chinatown hourly.
The ride to town is about 45min or so. The cost is below RM5.
AVIS, Budget, HERTZ, National, etc. It's cheaper a rent a car in town, trust me.
When staying at a hotel in Malaysia, and especially Penang, they all have mini buses that will pick you up at the airport and take you to your hotel. There is sometimes a surcharge for this service of between 20-30 MYR.
There is also a bus service from the airport to any part of Penang .
The white taxi's are available at the airport and cost between 25-48 MYR depending on where you are going on the island. You have to take a ticket from the desk and wait at the taxi rank. The taxi's are outside the main arrivals door.
Our flights were all with Malaysian Airlines... Unfortunately we didn't have a very good experience with them on the way over... One of my friends had her bag lost on the way (luckily she got it back later that night) and my bag was broken into...the lock was smashed off and the things inside were all messed up...the zipper was also broken on the suitcase (but Malaysian Airlines have since compensated me for that damage).
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