Category Archives: cheap flights

Hatyai Airport to Hatyai town by Mini van review by backpackies

With so many direct flights by the budget airlines to Hatyai (Hatyai by backpackies) , Air Asia flies direct from KL to Hatyai. Tiger Airways flies 10 times weekly direct to from Singapore to Hatyai.

With so many people arriving by flight to Hatyai on budget airlines, we thought the next question would be “So what is the cheapest way to get to Hatyai town from the airport” ??

Don’t worry, we at backpackies do think about you.

  1. Easiest way to get to town is of course by taxi. A cab will cost you around THB 250- 300. There is a taxi counter just outside arrival where you can get a cab – EASY.
  2. The cheapest way to town might not be the most ideal way either. There is a local Sawngteaw that runs past the Airport. They will stop just outside the airport. You will need to walk in which is like around 300 m. Cost around THB 50.
  3. We prefer to take the MIDDLE PATH. The express vans from the Airport to Hat Yai town is very often. (You can buy a ticket from the counter which is just outside the arrival gate) They are very reliable, fast and cheaper alternative to the taxi. It costs THB 150 and takes roughly 25 minutes

Van’s from Hat Yai town to Airport, there is a fixed time. You have to check at their office.The office is in Thanon Niphat Uthit 1 . Next to the Thai airways office. There is a phone number on the pictures down below.

hatyai mini van from airport to hatyai town

The Airport express van office is next to the Thai Airways office in town

hatyai mini van from airport to hatyai town

telephone number you need to remember

hatyai mini van from airport to hatyai town

the mini vans leave reasonably on time

hatyai mini van from airport to hatyai town

you will need to call and check on the departure times

hatyai mini van from airport to hatyai town

comfortable seats with air conditioning for the 25 minute ride. I cant complain

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Jonker Street, Melaka by Backpackies

Held like a weekly ritual, Jonker Walk is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The street heats up with electrifying atmosphere from as early as 5pm till late. Correct me if i am wrong, but i dare say, its as if the whole of Malacca is out here at Jonker Walk to shop.

If you are driving in Malacca, make sure you are not parked on Jonker because we did. And man, it was a nightmare because all the stalls were streaming in to start business and we couldnt get out. We had to wait till everything ended around 1 am before we could move the car. Luckily we were staying in Malacca for the night.
Here is a pictorial story book we did up to show you what to expect in Malacca. Jonker Street Market is a must see when you are visiting Malacca.

jonker walk

Entrance to jonker walk

Along the whole street, you can find some really nice Chinese temples, antique shops, and guesthouses hidden behind the overflowing stalls.
If you are tired of sitting at the side stall watching the crowd move by endlessly, you might want to check out the many activities held at the chinese temples. We were drawn to music coming out from this temple.
And another amazing thing is, if you are lucky you can actually get to watch the local lion dance troop practicing! The gong and the drum beats are so captivating that it will have you standing there for more. Lively and Hair raising is more the term to discribe watching a lion dance troop in action!

jonker street melaka

Very detailed crafting on the outside of a chinese temple

jonker walk chinese temple

delicate wood carvings on the temple doors and walls

chinese temple melaka

curious locals checking out what is all the music about

jonker street melaka

old ladies get together for line dancing session at the chinese association

jonker walk melaka

Chinese orchestra playing

jonker walk melaka

crowded street during the week end

wooden clogs melaka

tiny wooden clogs with cute cartoon characters

jonker walk melaka

Plenty of women acessories sold here

shopping at jonker street

We spotted Shin Chan showing his little wee wee in public here

One thing that i personally love about Jonker Walk is that, over here you can find all sorts of special” toys”. Battery operated helicopters, portable electric handheld fans, “baby milo” limited edition dolls, and some really nice money boxes are among the usual.

jonker street

interesting sweets they sell here

This stall was selling chocolate fruit fondue. Some of them was sugar coated and some was with chocolate rice. Kids will go crazy if they see this.

chendol melaka

delicious chendol melaka at restoran jonker 88

chendol so sweet and delicate, the ice will melt in your mouth ...the moment you put it in your mouth

nyonya laksa melaka

Nyonya laksa melaka

Laksa is a popular spicy noodle soup from the Peranakan culture, which is a merger of Chinese and Malay elements found in Malaysia and Singapore, and to a lesser extent Indonesia. The nyonya laksa here is served with a generous chunk of tuna meat with it. Tangy sourish and spicy taste to the whole bowl of noodles. Great and you need to give it a try while you are here!

.tang yuan melaka

tang yuan in a slightly spicy ginger soup

Tang Yuan are “Glutinous balls cooked in sweet flavoured soup”

Chinese usually eat Tang Yuan together with their families, during the Lantern Festival. They believe that the round shape and smoothness of the balls symbolise family togetherness and that everything in the New Year goes well and smoothly without any problems.

tang yuan at jonker walk

nyonya food melaka

freshly made Popiah rolls

bak chang melaka

bak chang- glutinous rice dumplings that come with assorted fillings

backpacking melaka

selling the famous freshly made heong pheah

jonker walk

fake food along side the real food

shopping at jonker walk

assorted watches sold

One thing that i told my self, that i would be getting my son( when i get one) is a BEN TEN watch. Man, do you know how cool these things are? Some of them can shoot out laser light and others plastic discs at your enemies! And how much do these watches cost? RM 10 only. I wished we had these, back in my time.

jonker walk melaka

chinese caligraphy by a handicap artist

melaka souvenirs

melaka souvenirs

Gold inggots that seemed to have chinese caligraphy, mostly wishing you good luck and wealth.

musician on jonker street

happy musician performing

Off course all along the road you can see how artsy Melakans are. We managed to snap this happy local performing.

 

trishaws at jonker street

There are plenty of those “twinkly boom box blasting” trishaws parked at the start of Jonker street, offering services to take you home.
Its actually quite an experience to ride on one at night. Although we personally would recommend taking it during the day to visit the attractions.

toilets jonker walk melaka

STOP!! and pay..

There are no such thing as free things in this world. You still need to pay to pee. Funny how this man really takes his job so seriously.

crowded but filled with so much to see

With all the crowds, you are bound to get sweaty in no time. Make sure you dress down. We still see the occasional “local” tourist in high heels and mini skirts. Just remember, its too crowded to be dressing to be seen. You know the saying ?” The nicer you dress, the more you pay for something”. The hawker might think you are a rich shopper from Hong Kong or Singapore. He might not be so relunctant to bargain with you. Thats why i always dress like a bum with no money.

shopping on jonker street

cart selling antique money

No wonder this vendor didn’t really serve me because of my dressing. I still got my photograph though. This place was selling all sorts of antique money notes. It does add to the whole feeling of Malacca’s historical title.

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Filed under backpacking, backpacking melaka, being happy while backpacking, cheap flights

LCCT – Air Asia Low Cost Carrier Terminal KL so whats new 2011 by backpackies

LCCT Air Asia

So what's new at LCCT Airport?

It has been quite a while since we have seen any improvement to LCCT – Low Cost Carrier Terminal in KL Malaysia. LCCT is the hub for all budget airlines in Malaysia. You can basically call this the base for all Air Asia flights.
This blog is an extension of our bestselling blogs >>

Low Cost Carrier Terminal LCCT Air Asia KL by backpackies 

and Air Asia Self Check In- Step by Step guide to checking in at the “self check in kiosks” by backpackies

So we went around recently (June 2011) to check out the latest additions to this airport.

And once again, we at backpackies only show you what you will get. No editing or made up story was done to this review.
Backpackies supports No Bullshit campaign.

Air Asia flight schedule

Flight schedule on the display system

There are  a few number of digital display screens located strategically around the airport. The information is pretty accurate. So chances are that you wont be missing your flight.

But again, please do not rely 100% on the system. Always be aware of your flight time and try to be on punctual.

backpackies backpacking penang

Air Asia Check in counter for Air Asia

Chances are there is always a long queue at the check in counters.  So make sure you get to the airport on time.

A minimum of 2 hours 30 mins before flight time for International Flights and 2 hours for domestic flights.
(most people will tell you its 2 hours for International and 1 hour for Domestic. But LCCT experiences high volume of passengers compared to other airports. So we had to take this in to account)
 

For International Flights. The main queue is at the check in counter, the immigration check and security check. This will slow you down the most. On average its a 5 minute walk to from the Immigration to the Departure Gate.
**This picture is an example of the Air Asia check in counter**

But of course the queue works to your advantage. If there is still a long queue of people checking in, they wont close the counter until every one is cleared. So if you see there is a long queue, means you still have plenty of time.
To avoid the queue at the check in counters, you can always check in online or now check in with your phone. MOBILE CHECK IN!

air asia mobile check in

Air Asia mobile check in counter

After you have done your check in using your Mobile Phone. You will be given a bar code. Which you will then need to scan on to these scanners here to get your boarding pass printed out.

mobile check in air asia

Check in using your mobile phone!

Air Asia mobile check in

Whats the mobile check in for?

Seems like there are some dedicated check in counters also for different locations. But these are the only ones that we have seen.
But after all the mobile check in, internet check in ….and dropping your baggage at the  baggage drop counter. You still need to come to this counter to verify your boarding passes. This is only applicable for International flights. So beware of this. This counters are located on the right of the International Departure Gates.

Air Asia check in

After you have done all your check in's...you still need to come here

air asia tickets

Buying your Air Asia tickets from the kiosk

If you need to buy a last minute ticket, there are kiosks that you can operate yourself.

Air asia ticket sales

Air Asia Sales Office

And if you have any questions, you can always approach the staff at the sales counter just beside the kiosks

FREE WIFI! one of the most used and sought after facility after the toilet.
God knows we cant live without it nowadays. *Need to chat with mum, dad, girlfriend 1, girlfriend 2, wife 3…..”

lcct free internet

Login enables users to use free internet for 2 hours

Its easy to connect and apparently the connection is everywhere around the airport. But they do TRY to limit you to 2 hours usage.  We don’t see anything hard about by passing this. Just log off and log on again!

LCCT internet

Login to the internet is tracked

And nowadays..they try to make you fill up forms… that will supposedly help to improve the system. Well you all know how efficient the Malaysian Government is. So fill it up you guys!!!

Internet at LCCT with backpackies

Questionnaire to fill up before accessing the internet

Being the lazy arse’s we were. ..we scrolled down …..CLICK

Air Asia LCCT

Go straight to the bottom clause

Next up is the first or probably the second most important facility after the internet. *TOILET*. Of course it would be awesome to have a Wifi enabled toilet..Imagine while you do your business, there is a touch screen beside to facebook and chat! **CHECK IN*  or LIKE maybe? ha ha ha Wow….. But no. But they did do away with the plastic pail and broken water hose. Bidet system!!!

Air Asia toilets

Auto Cleaning System Installed

And in case this isnt good enough to shout about. Check out the disinfectant liquid which you can use to clean the toilet seats! No more…. bending over, holding the door and ….xxxxxx.

LCCT toilet

Clean your toilet seats

*************************************COMMERCIAL BREAK******************************

LCCT food

The nasi briyani on board is pretty good

The Briyani Chicken Rice was awesome!! Just in case you are thinking of what to eat on board Air Asia.

***************************************BACK TO REVIEW****************************************

restaurants in LCCT

Dunkin Donuts outside the terminal

Just outside the terminal there are 2 new stalls. Dunkin Donuts to get you on your sugar high.

LCCT restaurants

Sugar colored donuts! Yummy!

Although the airport has managed to supply more seats but the growing number of passengers has out numbered it. During peak periods, most passengers are forced to sit on the floors.
Some smart entrepreneurs have come up with an idea to open spas. There are a few spas offering body and foot massage at the airport. (One of the spas is just by the toilet in this picture)

LCCT terminal air asia

One of the waiting places in LCCT.

The Emporium is still the cheapest place to buy drinking water, chocolates, and other travel essentials.

LCCT shops

Emporium is the cheapest place to get necessities

Air Asia low cost carrier terminal

Picking up your Sim card, buying products from the Air Asia Mega Store

Once you buy your Tune Talk sim card online, you can collect it at this counter here. They also sell cheap mobile phones, t shirts and other souvenirs from Air Asia.

Teddyyyyyyyy!!!!! 

Air Asia Teddy Bear

Wow check out the free gift on board!

So this concludes our update of Air Asia LCCT terminal KL.
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Filed under Air Asia, Backpacking Kuala Lumpur, being happy while backpacking, cheap flights

Air Asia flights, now you can call while you fly!

Yes folks, you read it right – now you can make phone calls, check/receive sms and surf the web with your mobile phone 30,000 ft up in the air.

Technology is progressing faster than we thought, gone are the days when NOT turning off your mobile phone is a big NO NO, a taboo even.

 

turn off mobile phone during flight

Uncle Sam is warning you!

 

Air Asia has quietly upgraded it’s flights to be mobile friendly, something we only recently found out. We noticed all seats were equipped with leaflets from Maxis.

 

Air Asia is mobile friendly

For those important moments as mentioned on the leaflet

 

And when we look up, the NO SMOKING signal has been replaced by PHONE USE IS PROHIBITED sign.

 

Call from Air Asia flights

The surefire way to tell if your flight is mobile phone friendly

 

Of course, you are not allowed to switch on your phone until the signal is off – that means during take off and landing. Other than that, you are free to call or text. And if you’re lucky, you might receive an sms from Maxis which entitles you to a FREE DRINK on board! Just show the message to any of the friendly Air Asia cabin crew to redeem it. Maybe some Milo or a boxed drink?

 

Call from Air Asia flights

Step by step instructions on making calls

 

Before you go crazy calling everyone you know 30,000 ft up in the air, a gentle reminder that the calls made during your Air Asia flight comes with a price – at RM11/minute! Same goes for web browsing, unless it’s a do or die situation, we seriously advice you guys to hold on the urge to go online. Because you might end up watching a clip on YouTube and pay RM125 for it!

 

Expensive to call from Air Asia flights

Think first, call later!

 

You’ve been warned. Happy traveling!

So if you are flying on an Air Asia flight, most likely you will be landing at one time or another at the Low Cost Carrier Terminal- LCCT. Guess what? We also wrote a blog about what to expect at the LCCT and also how to use the self check in kiosk! Check it out!! >>  click here.
And remember, for more whacky budget tips log on to www.backpackies.com or join us on facebook at backpackies is now on facebook ya’ll!!

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Filed under Air Asia, Backpacking Kuala Lumpur, cheap flights