Hotels and flight tickets
Hotel reservation tips Malaysia
When you are traveling to Malaysia for the first time you might be overwhelmed by all the different choices in airlines and available hotels. At our hotel review section we have published all the hotels we have ever visited. Our reviews combined with the personal opinions of our readers may help you in finding the right hotel at each destination within Malaysia. Besides our own reviews you could also check Tripadvisor.com for personal opinions, but beware those most of the user reviews are highly subjective (which is ok of course, but one bad review doesn't make a hotel or resort a bad one to stay at).
Making hotel reservations is usually cheapest at the hotel booking websites. Examples are Booking.com and Agoda.com. Remember to always check all of these sites to find the best deal. Sometimes Agoda has a great offer, other times you are better off at Booking.com. Compare all prices before making your reservations.
In some cases you will not be able to make reservations through the booking websites. This especially goes for the smaller resorts at the tropical islands and the more basic accommodation throughout Malaysia. In that case the only option to make reservations is to contact the resort (operator) directly via their website or via email or telephone. In many cases you are asked to email or fax a copy of your credit card. Banks and credit card companies would probably advise you not to do this as it might jeopardize your credit card. This means you are not able to make reservations up front, as the resorts offer no alternative methods of payment.
Some places in Malaysia are so popular that almost all accommodation is fully booked during peak season. Backpackers or travelers that do not like to make beforehand reservations will have a hard time to find a place to stay for the night. This only goes for certain destinations in Malaysia, other places have ample accommodation available and there you will always be able to find something suitable. Examples of places where things get quite crowded during peak season (or where there is a lack of available accommodation) are: Perhentian Island, Langkawi Island, Tioman Island, Taman Negara National Park, Cameron Highlands, Malacca, the area around Kinabatangan River and some popular guesthouses around the city of Sandakan.
Examples of places in Malaysia where you might need to make reservations directly at the resort or guesthouse are: Perhentian Island, Kapas Island, Tioman Island, basic accommodation at numerous other islands, most guesthouses in Kuala Lumpur, guesthouses in Malacca and most other popular cities.
Flight ticket tips Malaysia
How to find the best or cheapest flight tickets to Malaysia? We also listed all airlines that fly either directly to Malaysia, or with a short stopover. Usually the choice of airline boils down to the location you are departing from. One tip is to consider the great Arabic airlines like Qatar, Emirates and Etihad. All of them have won numerous airline awards the last few years, all fly with a very modern fleet and they offer tickets to Kuala Lumpur for real competitive prices. Possible downside is that you will always have a short stopover at the home base of each airline, but this is also the case with almost all other airlines (except for Malaysia Airlines).
Our personal favorites are Malaysia Airlines for the direct flights and fantastic in-flight service, and Singapore Airlines for the high quality of their overall service and their attractive ticket prices.
There are many websites that allow you to search for available flight tickets between the numerous airlines. Among those websites are Cheaptickets.com and CheapoAir.com. Most airlines offer great discounts via their own official websites too. Singapore Airlines for example often has great fares to Kuala Lumpur, the same goes for Etihad Airways and Emirates; both offer really affordable tickets and a first class service.