Tuesday, September 11, 2012

ARRIVAL AT KUALA LUMPUR INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (KLIA)

I arrived early at Brunei International Airport on 3 September 2012. Not that I’m “uber” excited with my solo traveling challenge but I was anxious on possible problems that may arise with my pass; with my multiple pass to expire on 14 September 2012, I thought of the possible scenarios that could happen such as not allowing me to board in my flight. Positively, everything went well.

Meanwhile, one of my friends named Raul, a well-known and professional photographer in Brunei, was on the same flight as mine. He’s bound for KL to do a two-day photoshoot. With his presence, I kinda felt relieved. In my mind, I said, “Buti at may makakasama sa flight.” Apparently, as Kuya Raul and I conversed, I found out that he’s also staying in Bukit Bintang, a place where I booked my accommodation. In end, we agreed that we’ll just help each other in finding our hotel once we reach KL. Soon, we boarded and our journey to KL began.

I was clueless on how does Kuala Lumpur International Airport look like. In fact, I didn’t even google it. To me, the only objective is to land on the country of destination and fulfill one’s itinerary with a big smile plastered on one’s face. Surprisingly, Kuala Lumpur International Airport is one of the world’s best airport for three consecutive years. I tell you, I was so shocked to see the colossal, modern and cosmopolitan architecture of the airport.

Wanna know more about it? Read on.
 





I was on a Royal Brunei Airlines flight for my recent KL Trip. The travel time from Brunei to Kuala Lumpur is estimated at 2 hours and 5 mins. Since our plane took off 20 minutes earlier, we arrived in KL at around 4:30 in the afternoon.

Inside RBA, while I was busy listening to some in-house music and watching TV shows, I enjoyed our smooth travel yet I was breathing with a bit of anxiety. Despite having someone, whom I know, in the same flight, and whom I will arrive with at KL, the reality of traveling alone was bugging me. However, despite the paranoia, I eventually got tired of scaring myself with negative thoughts and just let go. In end, I just thought and felt that traveling alone will be a benchmark in my life. With years of staying in my comfort zone, I said to myself, finally, I’m trying something different and definitely slightly spontaneous.


In Cloud 9 feeling!
The moment I relaxed and started to enjoy the cloudy skies, the food was served. I had chicken spaghetti, an orange juice and a chocolate brownies. I quiet liked my food. Ubos mga kapatid! Gutom much!

Spaghetti and Brownies!

Soon, we arrived in Kuala Lumpur. And so I started to compose myself and uttered, “This is it. There's no turning back.The challenge is on.”

Once the door opened and we all headed to the arrival hall, Kuya Raul followed me. Since it’s my first time and his as well, we just followed airport signages to direct us to the immigration and baggage claim.
Kuya Raul on a flat escalator!

Beautiful, detailed and modern interiors slowly allured my eyes. In the arrival area, high ceiling paired with natural lighting and spacious floors welcomed locals and tourists. Then there’s a “Jungle Dome” which houses trees. Parang Jurassic park ang peg!

Digital Information Counter

Jungle Dome!
As we walked further, souvenir shops waved and tried to attract the shopper’s spirit in us. But since we’re in a hurry and we’re at a loss, we just walked and followed the arrows.

Shops!
The information counter

As we arrived in one hall, we realized that we have to ride a train going to another building. The other building has  the immigration counter and the baggage claim. So, we waited to hop on in what they call the “Aero Train.” Apprehensive that we have to ride the aero train, I inquired in the information counter. True enough, the aero train will serve as our key to exit KLIA.

Different Time!
Aero Train Tunnel
People waiting to get in

Amazing. That’s what I said when we got in the train. Together with tourists of different age, race and religion, we all comfortably calmed down in the aero train and consumed 3 minutes of travel time on going to the other building.

Boarding Door
As the train stopped and everyone went off, we queued for immigration and claimed our luggage. The immigration counter has a finger scan. And the immigration officer didn't only stamped my passport, she (it was a girl) also plastered a digital sticker. Eventually after a few minutes in the immigration counter, Kuya Raul and I went to the baggage belt and took our bags. 

Arrival after Immigration Check
Baggage Claim Belt
Since I got my research and plan, Kuya Raul followed me. We went down to the first floor of the building and rode another train. This time, we bought a ticket at KLIA Ekspres for a price of 35RM. The train brought us to KL central where we walked and rode another train – the KL Monorail. We paid RM1.20 going to Bukit Bintang. All in all, the travel time from KLIA to KL Central is 30 minutes and from KL Central to Bukit Bintang is less than 10 minutes. It’s actually a good idea to get on the train as it saves times and more cheaper than getting a taxi and taking the road, which at that time would be congested because of the rush hour.
The lift going down to the first floor where KLIA Ekspres is located.

KLIA Ekspres Counter
KLIA Ekspres Tunnel
As we reached Bukit Bintang, Kuya Raul and I searched our hotel. And finally after 30 to 45 minutes of fat-burning walk while carrying our bags, we found Replica Inn near Jalan Alor, where Kuya Raul is booked, and La Comme Budget Hotel, which is in Jalan Angsoka, where I’m booked.

After checking in, since Kuya Raul had no itinerary for the night, he decided to just join me for dinner. He also followed me on the first to-do in my itinerary: to visit and have one’s picture taken at the famous Petronas Twin Towers.

UP NEXT: La Comme Budget Hotel

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