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If you are planning to spend your holiday / vacation to Kota Kinabalu or travelling for a business trip, information on how to get to KK i...

How To Get To Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia

If you are planning to spend your holiday / vacation to Kota Kinabalu or travelling for a business trip, information on how to get to KK is one thing that you need to know. The best way to reach Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia is by airplane.

Travelling by air is the most convenient and fastest way to reach Kota Kinabalu. If you are travelling from Brunei, you can do it by bus, by ferry or by airplane. You have three options to reach KK but I highly recommend to book a flight because you would save a lot of time.

If you are from the Philippines, there are many airlines operating flights to the Kota Kinabalu International Airport including AirAsia, Malaysian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Royal Brunei and Cebu Pacific. There are direct flights to KK if you are coming from Manila, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Bali, Seoul, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Singapore, and other cities in Asia. By the way, I got my plane ticket from Cebu Pacific which is less than Php2000 (37.5USD).

The aircraft usually landed in KK airport which is the second busiest airport of Malaysia. We landed on T1 which handles full-service airlines. There's another terminal in the airport which is T2, one operates the budget airlines.

I arrived in the airport at around 2AM. There's no available bus at that time so I decided to book an airport taxi. I payed MYR45 which was too expensive. I tried to use the grab app but it's not working (I don't know why it keeps loading on my phone). I recommend to use the grab when leaving the airport because it's cheaper. Grab fare from the airport is estimated MYR10 or less. On the other hand, bus ticket fare is estimated MYR5.

If you don't carry Malaysian Ringgit upon arrival, there are ATM and Money Changer facilities available in the airport. You will use Malaysian Ringgit to pay the bus and taxi. I highly recommend to exchange it in your country or outside the airport because currency exchange at the airport is extremely expensive.

Getting to Kota Kinabalu by Ferry (Brunei to Kota Kinabalu)

If you will travel from Brunei to Kota Kinabalu, the only way to reach KK by sea is through Labuan, a federal territory of Malaysia. You can ride a Muara express bus from Bandar Seri Begawan bus station. Bus to Muara leaves every 30 minutes and runs from 6:30 am to 7:00pm. Bus fare is 2 Brunei Dollar. You can take a ferry in Muara (Brunei) going to Labuan. The ferry fare is RM35 for lower deck and RM39 for upper deck.

There are two ferries ply Labuan to Kota Kinabalu every day, the first one starting at 8:30 a.m. and the second one at 1:00 p.m. Ferry fare for Non-Malaysian is MYR44.60 including the tax (business class). The journey takes 3 hours to complete and drops travelers at Jesselton Point Ferry Terminal which is walking distance to my hotel, Grandis Hotel and Resort.

Getting to Kota Kinabalu by Bus (Brunei to Kota Kinabalu)

Another option to reach Kota Kinabalu is via land transportation (by bus). You can take an Express Bus Service from Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei to Kota Kinabalu, Malausia. Bus leaves at 8:00 am and is stationed near BSB (Bandar Seri Begawan ) bust station and Chinese Temple. Bus Fare from  Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei) to Kota Kinabalu is B$45.

If you are travelling to other cities in Malaysia  like  Sipitang, Lawas and Limbang, you can also ride the same that's bound for Kota Kinabalu.

If you have review, blog, opinion or any questions on how to get from Brunei to Kota Kinabalu or  going from Kota Kinabalu to Brunei, please leave a comment below.


  1. Hindi ba malaki alon papuntang Kota Kinabalu?

  2. Hi Lorie, super kalmado po ang alon..It's safe to travel by ferry. You can also save a lot of time.