Bus from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur

How to Take the Bus Between Singapore and KL

Street view of Kuala Lumpur
Luiz Felipe Castro/Moment/Getty Images

Taking a bus from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia is an easy and less-expensive alternative to flying between the two countries.

Forget about the typical Southeast Asia "chicken" buses; the bus between Singapore and Malaysia comfortably plies the five-hour route along smooth roads.

Taking a Bus From Singapore to KL

Although there are a few exceptions, a majority of bus companies operate from the lot in front of a large shopping compound known as the Golden Mile Complex. A string of bus agencies occupy the front of the complex; buy your ticket at one of the counters inside.

The Golden Mile Complex is located south of Little India, not far from Arab Street. The nearest MRT stop is Nicoll Highway on the orange CCS line. Exit the MRT station, cross the pedestrian platform, then turn right onto Beach Road. The Golden Mile Complex is a short distance on the right; you must cross the road again at the elevated pedestrian walkway.

Bus Prices

Prices and levels of luxury vary widely between bus companies. Tickets can be had for as cheap as S$20, however, these buses take a different route and add an hour or more to the journey.

The more comfortable buses can cost upwards of S$50 or more and come equipped with leather seats; some have personal LCD entertainment systems in the seatbacks so that you can choose your own movies.

Booking a Bus from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur

A few of the more expensive bus companies offer online bookings, although visiting a counter at the Golden Mile Complex is still the safest way to ensure a reservation. Always book in advance and know about the big festivals in Asia that could affect transportation.

Many companies terminate the journey at Kuala Lumpur International Airport where you can take the KLIA Express train into the city. Read about getting around in Kuala Lumpur.

Some of the better buses running from Singapore to KL are:

Around the Golden Mile Complex

Some of the more luxurious bus companies have waiting lounges, or alternatively you can enjoy some cheap food in the food center directly opposite of Golden Mile Complex. The fourth floor of the food center contains a small market frequented by soldiers where travel, camping, and army equipment can be purchased.

If you have an abundance of time before your bus, consider walking left along Beach Road for 10 minutes to Arab Street where you can sit in one of the many pleasant sidewalk cafes.

The Golden Mile Complex area is considered the "Little Thailand" of Singapore; this is the neighborhood to find inexpensive Thai food and supermarkets.

Crossing the Singapore-Malaysia Border

Crossing the Singapore-Malaysia border by bus is straightforward, and the process is usually expedient.

First, you will exit the bus to be stamped out of Malaysia; leave your luggage on the bus. After being stamped out of Singapore, the bus will continue across the Causeway bridge for another 10 - 15 minutes, then you will exit at the Malaysian border to be stamped into Malaysia. Bring your luggage with you this time, as it must be screened before you enter Malaysia. The same bus will be waiting for you on the other side of the border as you exit.

Tips for Crossing the Border

  • Have your exit card ready, and preferably marking the page in your passport that has your last stamp so that the border agent doesn't have to search for it.
  • Take off your hat and sunglasses.
  • Have your immigration card for Malaysia completely filled out before getting into the immigration queue.
  • Bring your daybag/valuables with you rather than leaving them on the bus while you queue.
  • If coming from Malaysia into Singapore, remember that Singapore has very strict customs laws -- and fines -- for bringing in alcohol and cigarettes.
  • Smile, be courteous, and answer any questions: the agent's stamp wields a lot of power!

Alternatives Ways to Get to Malaysia

Although AirAsia flights can occasionally be found on sale, prices are surprisingly high for the 55-minute flight. Taking a bus eliminates the hassles of negotiating two airports for such a short journey.

Budget travelers can save a little money in exchange for more effort by paying for their bus in Malaysian ringgit rather than Singapore dollars. Do this by taking a one-hour bus from the Queen Street Bus Station in Singapore across the Causeway bridge to Johor Bahru in Malaysia, then a book a new bus ticket in Larkin Station onward to Kuala Lumpur.

From KL to Singapore

Many of the same bus companies offer return tickets, or you can book direct bus tickets between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.