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Friday, August 21, 2015


Nobody would reject a freebie when they are given one, right? But, finding a freebie in Malaysia is rather tough, unless the lucky guardian is with you! Here are 13 great ways to help you save a few dollars on, ranging from food, grocery to transportation, accommodation and even flights when you're in Malaysia!

1. GoKL Free City Bus

As a budget traveler, or just anyone, freebies are always welcomed. What could be better when you have free transportation around KL with free Wi-Fi on the bus too! There are 4 lines (green, red, blue and purple) that run in different routes around KL. You can visit this website to take a look at the detailed bus route.

2. NSK

NSK is the top choice for grocery shopping and cheap daily necessities. Unfortunately, there are only a few NSK branches in Klang Valley area, 13 to be precise. NSK prices are at least RM1 ~ RM5 cheaper than those you will find in other places. With thousands of different products, you will definitely go home with a few bags full!

3. Day / Night Markets


If you don’t mind wearing cheap shirts or eating cheap beside the road, then, day / night markets will be the right place for you. You can easily find cheap clothing at the markets from RM5 onwards. And there are various kinds of foods for you to choose from, all cheaper than eating in a restaurant or cafĂ©, maybe at the expense of stomachache. 

4. LRT


LRT is like “MRT” in Singapore, and although Malaysia have a lousy LRT route, it is still the best option to travel around KL. It’s way cheaper than public bus or taxi, but don’t expect it to be as timely as the ones in Singapore, Seoul or Tokyo. It may take some time to wait for one, 20 minutes maybe? However, it’s much more time efficient than public buses.

5. Daiso


Daiso is cheap everywhere, and, in Malaysia, all prices are fixed at only RM5 (exclude GST 6%). Don't get too excited too soon because some items are not even worth RM5. So don’t just grab anything you see in the store and choose wisely instead.

6. Nasi Lemak


Food expenditure causes a lot of misery to travelers other than air fare and accommodation. If you don’t mind eating really simple and cheap, try heading to Mesra shops (usually located just beside Petronas petrol station), and grab some pre-packed nasi lemak. It may be just rice, anchovies and sambal chili paste, but where else can you get RM2 nasi lemak?

7. Roti / Banana Leaf


Another cheap food option will be Roti Canai and Banana Leaf. Roti doesn’t cost too much (RM1~RM1.50) but the portion is small that it will barely be enough to take your hunger away. Banana Leaf can be pricey if you were to add on dishes like meat, but one can refill rice and side veggies (that usually served along with rice).

8. Guest House / Couchsurfing

Accommodation is the second most costly item for travelers. But fret not, there are still cheaper options for those who are traveling on a budget. You can choose to sleep in motels, or guesthouses from as cheap as RM25 in some places. Or if chances permitted, you can also try Couchsurfing which additionally gives you a chance to stay with locals and be friends with them!

9. Air Asia


I can’t hide the fact that I’m very proud of Air Asia for being the best low cost airlines in the world. I believe that Air Asia has the cheapest air fares for Asian countries. And it’s much cheaper if you are flying out from Malaysia compared to flying in.

P/S: It may be cheaper if you book your return ticket separately (one way tickets), so, remember to check both methods before purchasing!

10. Free sewing

A hole in your pants? Then you might want to visit Hobby N Coffee Cafe. You will first have to order some drinks or food to be entitled for free sewing. Though, you can get a traveler sewing kit from Daiso at a price of RM5 too, just compare both to see which is worthy!

11. Groupon

You might actually be able to save some money especially buying dining, haircut or accommodation vouchers through Groupon. Try browsing their webpage to find some great deals and make good use of that extra money you saved!

12. Burger Ramly

Yearning for some western but with a touch of a local taste? Then, you should try Burger Ramly! It’s really cheap comparing to McDonalds, Wendy’s or Burger King. The cheapest is around RM3 and portion is slightly bigger than McD’s burger. Depending on which one you order, the burger may add on egg, sausage too!

P/S: They are selling at roadside stalls.

13. Shopping bags

Going for a grocery shopping on a Saturday? Bring a shopping bag along! Or else you will be paying RM0.20 extra for each plastic bag. So it’s either you bring a bag or you’d have to buy one to pack your things. With the money you've saved here, you might be able to buy a couple of pre-packed nasi lemak for a meal!

More Malaysia

Written by Elley

Born, fed and grew up in Malaysia and have a strong interest in Korean language & culture too. Love travelling and taking pictures that doesn't seems attractive to others and believe that determination brings success in the future.

Thursday, August 13, 2015



Korea is the only divided nation in the world. Some people seem quite worried saying the ceasefire can be broken anytime, while Koreans themselves look completely carefree. They insist actually there is no country safer than South Korea. Sure enough, in a survey to the foreign visitors in 2014, public safety got the highest satisfaction index of 90%.

Let me explain why.

1. It’s in wartime?

The Korean War has not officially ended, but it is nowhere close to a state of hostilities. There have been very few cases of engagements on the Military Demarcation Line, but you will never face anything about it in any part of civil residences.

2. Kidnapping by North Korea?

Some South Koreans still think Kim Jong-un’s North Korea kidnaps civilians, like his grandpa did long ago, but it’s a complete mistake. Recently, the North usually sends the people back through the Panmunjeom truce village with prior notifications, even if they willingly sneaked into the border. ("N. Korea sends two S. Koreans back home via Panmunjom" - Arirang news)

3. Terrorism?


Terrified of possible terrorism by North Korean secret agents? That kind of things never happened ever since 80s. Don’t forget the northern part of the peninsula can hardly afford spies these days. Moreover, South Korea is completely free from internal ethnic or religious conflicts, and also it is very difficult for terrorists to access this little insular country isolated by the sea and the communist regime.

4. 24-hours awake


Koreans absolutely love to drink, sing and dance all-night-long. Inevitably, therefore, whole lots of pubs, restaurants and stores are open 24 hours and people are everywhere even in the very middle of the night.

5. Dense population

The population of South Korea is very high compared with its rather small land size, so you can hardly find any unfrequented places except in very remote rural areas.

6.  Fingerprint database


It might be a controversial issue, but all the South Koreans have to provide their fingerprint samples linked to the resident registration numbers to the government upon issuing resident cards at the age of 17. This database of fingerprints of the whole national citizens actually plays a major role in the high arrest rate of violent crimes in S.K.

Written by Karly

She graduated in a university in Korea double majoring in social studies and political science. After graduation, she worked for a while at the Nation of Assembly of Republic of Korea, but now she is working as a reporter. Having a life goal of being a Asia-specialized travel reporter, she travels around the world in her spare time.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Malaysia has a number of tropical mountains which make good hiking trails, and the most popular one is, of course, Mt. Kinabalu. Being the highest in Malaysia, locals and foreigners challenge themselves to conquer the peak of this sacred national asset. Nevertheless, Mt. Kinabalu is not even No.1 among these toughies!

Tips: Always register with local authorities if possible, prior to your climb, and bring salt to loosen yourself from the blood sucking monsters.

10. Bukit Kutu, Kuala Kubu Bharu

Bukit Kutu is the least difficult trail in this list. Though it’s not tough to climb, it’s filled with lots of bamboo trees that grow in all directions, vertically and horizontally, you will have to duck walk or do some matrix moves just to get across these thick bamboo “forest”.

9. Fraser Hill

Fraser Hill has 8 hiking trails, and the toughest one will be Pine Tree trail. Starting at 1,200m, a 300m climb to the peak might sounds easy. But, never underestimate something that looks simple. There’s a part where you have to pass fallen tree logs and steep stones that you need to climb with ropes before you reach the top.

8. Bukit Tabur, Far East & Extreme Trail

Nazir Amin/flickr

Different from the popular East & West trails, there isn’t much info about Far East. However, it has a more picturesque view than East / West trail which has been mostly obscured by thick forest.

The least climbed Extreme Trail have softer grounds and loose rocks that will make your footing unstable. Due to lack of cleaving of the paths, plants with lots of thorns will prick you and cut into your flesh.

7. Mt. Santubong

Dustin Iskandar/flickr

A most climbed mountain in Sarawak, but it’s only 810m tall. Tiny huh? But do not judge it before you actually climb it. At the final phase, you are required to show some rock climbing skills (90 degrees steep) and maybe some hawk eyesight to watch out for poisonous snakes and tree saps, creepy crawlies and also monkey thieves.

6. Mt. Ophir (Gunung Ledang)


It’s the highest mountain in Johor and ranked 6th most difficult to climb mountains in Malaysia. Starting with concrete steps, you will then come across with jungle trails.

Trail after CP5 (Check Point 5) gets even steeper, as it is known as KFC (not finger lickin’ good fried chicken, but Killer For Climbers). Heed this: totally not for Acrophobiacs! My legs are trembling when I see the pictures of ladders at CP6 to CP8!

5. Gunung Nuang

Irwandy Mazwir

The starting point is at 190m, but imagine hiking all the way up to 1,439m. Gunung Nuang is ranked 5th toughest to climb in Malaysia. There's a trail called the “never-ending-winding-road”, which already sounds boring to me, and so to say, this mountain has nothing much to see. Be prepared for a strenuous hike when you reach False peak. It’d be a 40 minutes steep climbing and crawling down, and back up again before arriving at the peak.

Psst, there’s 2 stray dogs on the mountain too, but don’t freak out as they are a friendly pair. Maybe bring some food to feed them?

4. The Pinnacles, Mulu National Park


People who have climbed the Pinnacles will recommend you to challenge this mountain. Why? The peak itself is the reason. Pointy and grayish limestones enormously jutted out from the forests. Hiking this mountain is not for beginners, though it doesn’t sounds harmful. ONE misfooting is enough to take your life away.

The trail is terrifyingly steep and requires lot of rock climbing. Piece of cake? The sharp limestones are actually the ones that you should be worried about. It may cause deep cuts if you are not careful and it’s also a reason that guides wouldn’t bring climbers up when it rains. So, pray for good weather!

3. Gunung Tahan


The highest mountain in West Malaysia with the height of 2,187m tall, you can expect a breathtaking view from the peak. The trek can last as long as 7 days, and the toughest part? Carrying a 20~30kg bag with you when you climb those steep trails, 'cause there's no base! Ooh! I can’t imagine how one can climb those 90 degrees stone walls with that bag on.

During descending, there are muddy spots where you need to watch your footing so you don’t slip. And watch for bugs too! I heard some bugs will cause itchiness for at least 1 week!

2. Mt. Kinabalu


I guess most people have heard about the name, Mt. Kinabalu. Being the tallest mountain in Malaysia, it has been a must-climb for all hikers. People tend to train before they actually hike it and there’s no way you can climb it without a guide due to safety reasons.

Temperature can get quite low in the evening. Bring along warm jackets and windbreaker so you don’t freeze. As for the spoiler: Don’t expect any flat trails, and you have to climb the steepest part in the dark at the final phase!

Tips: Don’t go naked, else you will make the forest gods angry and might trigger an earthquake!

1. Mt. Trusmadi

Ta-daa! Mt. Trusmadi has come face to face with Mt. Kinabalu, with a little more challenge. Being second highest mountain in Malaysia, it is nicknamed as Terus Mati (Straight Die), and meant for hardcore hikers.

Mt. Trusmadi is Sabah’s best kept secret (oops, sorry for exposing it), and you need to request for permit at least 2 weeks before the climb. You also need to bring all necessities to survive through the days, and get a 4WD to bring you to the starting point (1,600m).

It doesn’t have any flat trails, and when you need something to grab on for support, you might end up pricking your hands by thorns! I guess this is the more challenging part compared to Kinabalu climb. 

*All content provided here is for informational purposes only. Tempting East will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the use of this information. Please be extra cautious.*

More Malaysia

Written by Elley

Born, fed and grew up in Malaysia and have a strong interest in Korean language & culture too. Love travelling and taking pictures that doesn't seems attractive to others and believe that determination brings success in the future.