MY HUNT FOR CHEAP TICKETS AND ACCOMMODATION
I bought two one-way tickets on December 15, 2011 (10 months from planned departure date) to get cheap fare Rp.568,000 for me and Alif. Three months later (January 13, 2012), I bought Tiger Airways tickets 2 x SG$ 30 = SG$60. Finally I got Air Asia tickets to go home, KL-Jakarta, only RM183 in total for both of us during the promo week (February 16, 2012) including 15 kg of baggage allowance.
I booked a private room at ABC Hostel through online reservation at http://www.abchostel.com.sg/, located conveniently in Bugis area. The hostel would be easy to reach from Changi Airport, and only few minutes walk to Masjid Sultan where I wanted to do Shalat Idul Adha.
For Kuala Lumpur, I booked a room via http://www.agoda.com/, price for “Joy Double Room with Window” was US$ 27.65 charged to my credit card. It’s conveniently located less than 400m from KL Sentral bus/train station, and one minute walk to KL Sentral Monorail Station, I will save the transportation cost significantly because no need to use any taxi. Not much good online reviews about the hotel (small rooms, noisy, surrounded by brothel etc e.g. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g298570-d2240909-Reviews-Joy_Inn_Hotel-Kuala_Lumpur_Wilayah_Persekutuan.html), but I think it will be good enough for us to get some sleep (which probably will not be more than 6 hours anyway).
I purchased online two-way tickets from/to LCCT to KL Sentral, RM14 (adult) + RM8 (child) = RM22. My flight from Kuala Lumpur will be 7:00 AM on Sunday morning (October 28, 2012) means I have to be at the airport before 6:00 AM. Refer to http://www.aerobus.my/Home_en.aspx, I must catch 4:45 AM bus not to miss the check in (Air Asia is very strict on this matter, few times I saw late passengers were just denied from getting on board).
Got cheapest tickets for Universal Studio Singapore from SCOT Online Travel (PT Duta Wisata Dunia), http://scot-onlinetravel.com/. Official price from http://www.rwsentosa.com/ = SG$ 76 for adult + SG$56 for child. SCOT’s price = SG$65 for adult + SG$49 for child = SG$114. Means, I have saved SG$18. Cool, got extra budget for our meal!
DAY ONE (October 25, 2012)
Air Asia flight from Jakarta to Singapore on Thursday evening was scheduled for ETD 6:50 PM, but the plane didn’t take off until 11:30 PM. Alif and I should have arrived by 9:30 PM, but it was almost 2:00 AM when finally we got to Changi Airport.
No more cheap MRT after midnight, then Alif and I took shuttle bus from airport to ABC Hostel at Jalan Kubor. The fare was S$9 for adult, S$6 for child. Already 3:00 AM when we checked in, it’s a private room (S$55 on regular day, S$60 on peak day, with S$20 refundable deposit for key).
DAY TWO (October 26, 2012)
We started the day by going for Shalat Idul Adha at one of big mosque, Masjid Sultan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masjid_Sultan). Located at Kampong Glam, Sultan Mosque is one of Singapore’s most impressive religious building with its massive golden dome and huge prayer hall. Built in 1824 by Sultan Hussain Shah, the first sultan of Singapore, with a grant from the East India Company. The main prayer hall can hold up to 5,000 worshippers. The dome base is formed out of many glass bottles collected by devotees and is a great sight to behold.
I wanted to eat nasi beryani from the famous Zam Zam Restaurant (http://www.alexischeong.com/2012/05/alt-tour-singapore-zam-zam-restaurant.html), but it closed because of “Hari Raya Haji” national holiday. So we went directly to Sentosa Island by MRT East West Line from Bugis Station near our hotel to Outram Park, then changed train to MRT North East Line until Harbour Front. A bit walk through Vivo City, we got another train ride to Sentosa Island until Universal Studio.
Within 7.5 hours (10:25 AM-5:55 PM), Alif enjoyed 13 attractions.
– Transformer The Ride (Sci-Fi City)
– Accelerator (Sci-Fi City)
– Rapids Adventure (The Lost World)
– Treasure Hunters (Ancient Egypt)
– A Crate Adventure (Madagascar)
– King Julien’s Beach Party-Go-Around (Madagascar)
– Enchanted Airways (Far Far Away)…3x!
– Shrek 4D Adventure (Far Far Away)
– Magic Potion Spin (Far Far Away)
Shows and street performances:
– Sesame Street’s New York Street (New York)
– The Rockafellas (New York)
– Monster Rock (Hollywood), 25 minutes of highly recommended musical show
– Daddy O’s (Hollywood)
DAY THREE (October 27, 2012)
On the sunny Saturday morning, Alif and I checked out from hostel then went to Singapore Flyer (http://www.singaporeflyer.com/) by MRT (from Farrer Park to Dhoby Ghaut, then Circle Line to Promenade, go out from Exit A). Alif got boring during 30 minutes flight in the cabin we shared with two other families (US and Indian), while I was so excited to see Singapore from eye-bird view.
We left from Promenade before 11:00 AM, took MRT to Paya Lebar, then continue by East West Line to Changi Airport for our Tiger Airways flight, ETD 12:50 PM.
We arrived at LCCT by 2:05 PM as scheduled, after immigration process then we took Aerobus to KL Sentral and checked in to Joy Inn before 4:00 PM. After shower and a quick rest, we got on trip by LRT from KL Sentral to Pasar Seni.
After bought few souvenirs (fridge magnets, keychains) then we walked to Masjid Jamek. A bot more walk, we passed Masjid India on the way to Mydin where Alif bought a car toy with remote control and I packed some South Asian masala and spice, ghee (butter made from cow mik) also atta flour (whole wheat, perfect for paratha) and basmati rice (special long grain from India) which cost much cheaper than price in Indonesia (maybe because they imported in bulk amount considering high population of South Indian migrants in Malaysia).
I planned to take Alif to check toys at Toys R Us at Suria KLCC (and make some photos of him in front of the twin towers) but it was too late, 9:00 PM already when we got back to KL Sentral for dinner at McDonalds and walked to Joy Inn.
DAY FOUR (October 28, 2012)
We were awake since 4:00 AM, checked out from hotel and walked 15 minutes to KL Sentral. The Aerobus left at 4:30 AM then enough time before our Air Asia flight, ETD KL 7:00 AM. It was 50 minutes delayed then we arrived at Jakarta at 8:50 AM. A breakfast at T3 Soekarno-Hatta International Airport before got home, we ended the trip safely as expected, alhamdulillah.