Transportation - Get In
Langkawi International Airport is located at Padang Matsirat, on the northwestern part of the island. Over a million passengers pass through annually.
Direct flights are available to Langkawi from Penang, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Kota Bharu.
- Langkawi Ferry operates fast air-con boats from Kuala Perlis (RM18, 75 min), Kuala Kedah (RM23, 105min), Penang (RM60, 165min) (the ferry is freezing cold, so bring warm clothes), and Satun (RM30 or THB300, 75min), (Satun ferry to Langkawi: last boat departs Satun at 16:00.
- Tropical Charters operates ferries from Kuah Jetty to Koh Lipe twice per day during the high season (until 19th of April 2015) at 9.30am and 2.30pm from Langkawi and 11am and 4pm from Koh Lipe. During the low season, from April 20th 2015 to the 19th of May 2015, the company only has morning trips. After the 19th of May 2015, the ferry stops running until October 2015. Price is RM118 one way (RM100 if you book online), including the longtail boat transfer and Thai custom fee. Check in is at the inner entrance of the Jetty Point Food Court. Registration closes 30 minutes before departure. The trip takes 90 minutes. Arrival in Lipe is at the Bundhaya Resort.
- Telaga Harbour operates speedboats from Ko Lipe, Thailand twice per day during the high season, at 09:30 and 14:30 (RM128 1-way, RM248 return, 75min). These boats dock at the south end of Pattaya Beach. Bookings can be made online.
Transportation - Get Around
There is effectively no public transport on the island, so your choices are to use taxis or to rent a car, motorbike/scooter, or bicycle.
A taxi from the Airport to Pantai Cenang costs RM20. You can buy a coupon at the taxi desk in the airport. From the ferry terminal to Pantai Cenang the price is RM24. For those arriving at the Kuah Jetty and going into Kuah Town, the price is RM8.
By car or motorbike/scooter
Renting a car or motorbike/scooter is highly recommended due to lack of public transport. This can be done at the airport, the port complex, or from shops on Pantai Cenang. Refrain yourself from renting from touts, as many are operating illegally without permits and usually without insurance. Remember that accidents happen to tourists on motorbikes/scooters every day, so be careful although the traffic is not as chaotic as e.g. in Penang.
Renting an air-conditioned mid-sized sedan costs RM70-RM150 per day (depending on model, condition and length of stay) and a 150cc motorbike/scooter costs RM40 to RM45 per day. Cheaper but usually very used and older are the semi-automatic 115cc bikes for RM25 a day. A tired Proton with in Pantai Cenang maybe around RM60-90/day.
Remember to have regularly check on your fuel level, petrol pump stations, (gas stations) are far from one another. However, rental agencies do not care how much fuel is in the tank when the vehicle is returned so do not spend more on fuel than you have to. Fuel only costs about RM1.90 a litre and you should return the bikes with the same filling level as you picked it up. Some rentals do check the level and mark it when you sign the slip.
At the gas/petrol station for the first time will confuse you. You will need to guess how much fuel you need and pay first. Most saloon cars if empty are RM50 to fill up and motorbikes are approximately RM5. Sometimes you fill up your car/bike and you haven't used what you have paid for not to worry you can claim this back at the counter.
Remember to drive safely and slowly on the island and on the left side of the road. There are tourists, children and animals like chickens, cows and even buffaloes crossing. Take care not to run over the beautiful snakes or monitors. Cattle and snakes like to lie on the road at night; the blacktop radiates heat.
Laws you need to know.
- Driver's Licence needs to be with you at all times.
- Seatbelts are mandatory in all vehicles. Fines given ranging from 50RM plus if not wearing.
- Helmet mandatory. Fines same as above but more importantly the hospital does not have facilities to treat head injuries you will have to get medivac out to Penang 45min+ and that's if the helicopter is available.
- International driver's license not necessary but must have text in English.
Road blocks are commonplace in Langkawi; they are mainly interested in locals with no licence/tax disc. Make sure you have the above items and you will have no problems.
You can rent bicycles in many of the hotels. Expect to pay RM10-30 per day.