Travel Advice Please for Mel-Sin-Kul-Dps-Bkk-Hyd

Hope you all had a good Christmas 🎄!!

Happy bargains day hope you all score stunning deals 😎.

We are taking an Asia trip for 18 days before reaching India where we will spend 3 weeks or more and book a return back to Melbourne.

The process of finding the best flight ticket prices, accommodation and tour itenary was a tedious as I just thought about it a week ago. Hopefully the trip goes well and would all be worth it 🤓

Cool bargain people of Oz, hoping to get your expertise at things I'm stuck:

Asian Sim Card :
This deal only does for 15 days, would I be able to extend it? So that it suits for my 20 days trip which would cover all countries except India.

Was able to spote some on ebay, but unsure which one to opt, please suggest by your experience.

Also what do you think is better for long expiry sim card, Vodafone vs amaysim?

Currency & Visa💵: I have a Citi card, which I intend to use across all countries and not carrying any cash as yet but will be using the first atm in each country as I land to get sufficient to cover expenses (used ones in Thailand and thinking to do the same).

But will need to carry some money for visa's (gf on indian passport) so which forex trader would you suggest in Melbourne for currency exchange?

My gf needs visa to all countries, of which Thailand & Bali are on arrival but for Singapore & Malaysia need to apply ahead of our travel, I have checked online and it's not a straight and honestly little complicated process for me 🙃. Any better way or other way?

Car Hire🚙: I was thinking to drive from Singapore to Malaysia (one way) really want to do this, currently thinking to take a train deluxe sleeper at 9pm from Sin and arrival at 7am in Kul if car think doesn't work out.

a. Has anyone done this before or have suggestions about doing it?
b. Couldn't find a rental companies who provide one way rentals. Ones hired a car in Thailand and it was a shit car but that was only one available or scammed us lol.
c. For Malaysia visa check by land where should I set the port of entry to for car or train, I have checked for Johar which they do for train.

Travel Insurance🤔:
Was suppose to wait for my flashy new credit card which offers travel insurance but that was taking a bit of time so made booking without it, so need to pay travel insurance.

Which one do ozbargainers prefer? On my last trip I lost my bag and travel insurance didn't do much.

Hope to find answers 🙂


  • Use:

    Good itinerary manager. :+)

    • Yeah using that, will upgrade to pro at start of my travel.

      Thanks for suggestion mate

  • I doubt any company will allow you to do a one-way car hire from Singapore to Malaysia. You'd have to either find a Malaysian-registered vehicle in Singapore, or dump a Singapore-registered vehicle in Malaysia. Not to mention a Singapore-registered vehicle really sticks out in Malaysia. You're better off going over to Johor and finding a car hire there.

    I would suggest taking the overnight train to KL, and then hire from there though. There's nothing to see on the road from Johor to KL. Also, if you can, cross over to Johor first and then buy the tickets at the train station there. It's the same numerical value but in Malaysian Ringgit rather than Singapore dollars, so 1/3 the price.

    • Excuse my ignorance, but I thought there is no direct train to Kuala Lumpur. I was planning to do the same route myself and it appeared you'd have to stopover in Gemas regardless, somewhat destroying the "sleeper" function. And speaking of sleep, I thought you'd have to changeover at Johor Bahru regardless as well (whether you take the shuttle from Woodlands or a bus from anywhere else in SIN). Due to changeovers the cost of shuttling from Changi to KL and taking even economy train fares would have been about the same as a bus it seems (~$27). But even though the train in those parts is said to be nothing special, and the process is slow, I really do hate buses. And bus accidents in Malaysia still aren't considered freak accidents (apparently deaths by road accidents are only exceeded by Thailand and South Africa).

    • Thanks for that, I'll just book a train for overnight travel.

  • +1 vote

    Just fly from Singapore or Johor to KL, probably cost you less than $30-40.

    There is nothing to see on the road other than a bunch of car accidents which brings traffic to a complete halt more often than not.
    Overall it is a pretty dangerous stretch of road, personally I'd avoid the buses too.

    Malaysia has the worlds highest road fatalities per capita (by a very large margin too), so just let that sink in for a second.

  • +1 vote

    I'd use an ING card over Citi, once you satisfy the world wide ATM rebate don't have to worry about being charged to withdraw.

    • Yeah. Definitely for Thailand. When I was leaving Bangkok I only needed 60 baht extra at 7-Eleven but the minimum card spend was 300. I pulled out 100 baht with a refunded 220 baht fee (~$9.60) and I was upset about having to buy 40 bahts in snacks :)

      • I have just checked for ING, I can't open a account in 3 days and get the card posted for fulfilling 5 transaction this month so I can have no txn fee in January :(

        So most likely will be using Citi & Macquarie for atm withdrawls

        • Yeah, that sucks. For Citibank (in 2012, before Paywave and didn't even have a chip I think) I had an issue where I was departing in 2 days and hadn't received my card yet so I went to the George St Sydney Branch and they made it on the spot.

          To be frank, with only a few days per country in the SE Asian portion of your trip, you're better off researching which ATM brands will lower or eliminate your fee, rather than looking for a Citibank one (well, I suppose Singapore is an exception if they're everywhere). Thai fees will hurt the most but finding Citibank ATMs in Thailand is like finding needles in a haystack. If you're going to those areas anyway it's fine but I felt like an idiot in Buenos Aires (2012) when the Citibank ATMs charged a fee anyway.