Many of you might know that I am a Software Engineer, and that entitles me to fix people’s computers for free. (Nobody knows what they are signing up for when they apply to an IT school, yeah). Just like that, because I am also a travel blogger, that makes my friends and family think that I know all about planning a trip. I am often approached by people with different queries about a certain destination, so when one of my friends asked me what would be the perfect destination for herself and her family on a mid-priced budget, I blurted out loud and clear: Malaysia!
The story doesn’t end here. She’s a working woman with hardly any time everyday to extensively research about hotels, tickets and tours, so I was their go-to person to research and plan everything for them. Now planning a trip is a no-brainer nowadays (thanks TripAdvisor, Hotels.com, booking.com – basically thanks to the INTERNET!). Knowing the family’s budget and preferences, I tailored an itinerary for them which I believe others can also benefit from.
So boys and girls, down below you will find an itinerary for Malaysia. I have also researched on the costing for this trip, but the prices may vary depending on when you visit and what type of accommodation you book. Please don’t kill me if your trip costs more or less than my suggested cost, cause I am not an expert. Also, my intention was to give only a rough estimate of the costing and not a definite one.
7 Nights 8 Days Itinerary for Malaysia
(3 Nights in KL + 1 Night in Cameron Highlands + 3 Nights in Langkawi)
Day 1: Arrive in KL. Check in to your hotel. Relax and have a nice dinner somewhere.
Places to explore: Berjaya Times Square Mall and Hotel (My #1 choice for affordable shopping! I bought SUCH GORGEOUS bags from Bonita @ Berjaya that are still going strong even after 4 years!)
Day 2: Go out and about the city.
Places to explore: KLCC Mall, Petronas Towers, Bukit Bintang, China Town.
Day 3: Explore more in KL.
Places to explore: Bird Park, Zoo Negara, Batu Caves.
Day 4: Take a bus from KL to Cameron Highlands. (4 hours bus ride from KL). Explore the highlands all day and stay overnight at a budget hotel.
Places to explore: Strawberry farms, Tea Plantations, Butterfly farm, Cactus Valley.
More info: Check this. And this.
Day 5: Take a morning bus from Cameron Highlands back to KL. Catch a local flight to Langkawi and check in at a fancy resort.
Day 6 & 7: Go out and explore Langkawi or simply just relax on your resort’s beach or poolside 🙂 Read more about fun stuff to do in Langkawi here.
Places to explore: Langkawi Cable Car ride and Sky Bridge, Parasailing, Ziplining in forest, Mangrove Forest and Eagle Watching, Night Market, Pulau Payar Marine Park
More info: Check this and this.
Day 8: Check out of your hotel in Langkawi and catch a local flight back to KL, and then fly back to your home country 🙂
Below is the cost of travel and accommodation for ONE person keeping in mind the above mentioned itinerary. Please note, that if you are two people travelling, then the ticket cost would increase but the room rate would remain same as most hotels have rooms having a capacity of 2 people.
|Tickets KHI-KUL-KHI (Srilankan Airlines)||PKR 55,000 per person|
|Tickets KUL-LGK-KUL||PKR 1500-2000|
|Visa||PKR 8000 per person|
|Roundtrip Bus Ticket (KL to Cameron)||PKR 2000 per person|
|Accommodation in KL (Berjaya Times Square Hotel KL)||PKR 8000-9000/night|
|Accommodation in Cameron Highlands (Budget Hotel)||PKR 1500-3000/night|
|Accommodation in LGK (Berjaya Langkawi)||PKR 20,000-30,000/night|
|TOTAL APPROX COST||PKR 150,000-200,000 approx.*|
|* Cost does not include food, activities and airport transfers.|
Tips to Save Money
Can this be done in less? Totally. But with a few compromises.
1) Choose an even cheaper hotel in Kuala Lumpur
E.g. a hotel apartment/airbnb etc. You will have to research on it. Check out One Stop Residence, they are offering cheaper rates and I can personally vouch for their rooms as I stayed there myself.
2) Spend money on only one large meal a day!
If your hotel package offers free buffet breakfast, then eat like a giant at breakfast, manage hunger during the day through cheap snacks (go Maggi noodles!) and have a large early dinner. Be sure to stay active during the day so that you burn all the calories you eat at breakfast. Carry filling snacks on you, like dry fruits, biscuits, chips etc, so that you can curb untimely hunger pangs.
3) Choose a Cheaper Hotel for Langkawi
A major chunk of our money goes into the accommodation we choose for our stay anywhere, so you can make a tiny compromise and go for a cheaper option when choosing a hotel. I personally believe that if I’m going to a pretty place like Langkawi, I would want to make the most of it by staying at a luxury-loaded resort (personal choice, I mean no harm). If that doesn’t work for you, you can definitely explore other options! People on SWOT Travel Group are recommending The Frangipani Resort a lot, which no doubt is cheaper on the pocket, but I have read some questionable reviews about it on Trip Advisor so I can’t say for sure if you should go for it.
4) Or – Opt out of Langkawi!
Yes, skip the island from your travel plan altogether in order to not only save up on accommodation cost but also on ticket, activities and food cost. It’s a hard choice to make when a place is so pretty, but you can have truck loads of fun in Kuala Lumpur on a limited budget as well!
5) Plan for Less Number of Days!
The itinerary I have suggested is pretty long. You can plan for a shorter trip and that could cut down your cost dramatically.
6) Choose Cheaper Flights
My suggested cost includes estimates of tickets on Srilankan Airlines (for KHI-KUL-KHI) and Air Asia (KUL-LGK-KUL). You can choose a cheaper airline for your flights, but you will have to research which airline is offering a cheaper ticket from your source destination. For people flying from Karachi, I know PIA is giving a very cheap fare, but I am not sure of their reputation lately. I recently read a blog where they had a really bad experience with the carrier and ended up losing a LOT of money so I am not sure if I’d recommend PIA. (Not shaming the carrier, just sharing an experience).
Hope this guide helps you guys in planning your trip. If you’ve already been to the destinations above, feel free to add your valuable tips in the comment box below! 🙂
Until next time.
+ All photos are by my sister @elarte_doodles who also accompanied me to my trip to KL.
+ All opinions are my own. The cost and pricing is just an approximation. Your actual expenditure could vary depending on your travel dates and preferences. This guide is just for reference and has been put together after extensive research and personal experiences. It is also meant to help people who have zero experience in researching about travel.