Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Calcutta to Kuala Lumpur

We took an overnight flight to Kuala Lumpur. It was the first time we'd used Air Asia, a low cost airline here. It worked out fine. I had paid a few dollars extra to sit in the exit row and Shelley and I ended up being able to take over 3 seats each which meant we got a little more sleep (for me anyway) than otherwise. I still can't say I'm a fan of overnight flights. The flight left at 0:45 and was about four hours, but there was a time difference so we arrived around 7:30am. Immigration, baggage claim, and customs were all quick and easy thankfully. We stopped for coffee in the airport before braving the transit system, although it turned out to be simple also. The airport express train took us into town to KL Sentral and from there we took a taxi to our hotel (The convention center Impiana)

We were planning to take the train from KL to Singapore and it turned out we could buy tickets at KL Sentral. We thought we had it cased. Except the trains were all full - multiple trains per day and we checked a day either side. So much for the that plan. When we got to the hotel and got internet we had no problem finding a flight instead. We went with Air Asia again since we knew it. It seems backwards to me that there is no shortage of flights, but the trains are all full (it seemed the same in India). Theoretically it should be easy to add cars to trains to accommodate more passengers. And presumably cheaper to run trains with extra capacity than airplanes. Maybe they've gotten into a misdirected efficiency mode where they measure their effectiveness by how full the trains are (rather than how many people get satisfied).

By the time our room was available all we wanted to do was have a nap! We did wander around the area a little bit. It seems even more shopping oriented than Hong Kong. Huge endless malls. Yuck.

Our hotel restaurant got good reviews so that was an easy choice for our first night. As well as good food it turned out to have great views of the city night skyline, including the Petronas Twin Towers.



And of course, once I had my camera out I couldn't resist a few more artsy shots.



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