Penang to Singapore

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How to get from Penang to Singapore

For such a small island city-state, Singapore is a huge tourist hub in Southeast Asia. In 2017, the number of tourists visiting Singapore was actually 3x more than its population!

This is for good reason. Head to downtown Singapore and you’ll find a number of tourist attractions, all connected by efficient and high-quality transportation.

To revisit your childhood, there’s Universal Studios and the resort island of Sentosa. For shopping, head to Orchard Road. For art, visit the Kampong Glam area. For an amazing night and light show, you have to visit Marina Bay Sands.

Are you planning to explore vibrant Singapore after a cultural immersion in Penang?

There are 2 options to travel the 710 km distance from Penang to Singapore: a 9.5-hour bus or a 2.5-hour flight (including transfers). Fares range from $23.50 to $30.50.

2 ways to get from Penang to Singapore

Transport ModeDurationCostsAvailability
Bus9.5 hours97 MYR ($20.50)Check Bus Tickets
Flight2.5 hours135 MYR ($29)Check Flights

The bus is a cheap and direct transfer from Penang to Singapore. It departs from Penang city centre and arrives just 3 km from downtown Singapore. You can get a ticket for $23.50.

The flight takes only 1.5 hours, but you’ll need to make extra transfers to and from the airports. Combined fares start from $30.50 if you book months in advance. Keep in mind that short-haul flights like this are not worth their emissions and are harmful to the environment.

Stuff you can’t bring in to Singapore

Do be careful about the things you try to bring into Singapore. They can be strict on customs checks. Allow me to share with you my own experience when crossing the Malaysia-Singapore border by bus.

“My friend and I had a big bottle of gin when we checked in for customs and immigration. We were taken to a separate room for around 30 minutes before they finally let us leave with the alcohol. All the time we were so scared our bus would leave without us!”

Later on, we found out that alcohol is not exactly prohibited when entering Singapore, but you can only bring up to 1 litre when coming from Malaysia. Exceed that and you’ll have to pay a hefty fine.

To avoid any hassle and the possibility of spending a fortune on fines, make sure you’re not carrying any of these when you cross the Malaysia-Singapore border:

  • Chewing tobacco and imitation products, including e-cigarettes
  • Chewing gum, except those used for medical/dental purposes
  • Any object that looks like a weapon (toy guns or cigarette lighters shaped like a gun, etc.)
  • Pirated materials (movies, software, etc.)
  • Illegal drugs, firecrackers, or any form of unlicensed weapon
  • Obscene materials (magazines, videos, etc.)

Visit Singapore’s Immigration & Checkpoints Authority website for more details.

PRO TIP: When travelling by bus, don’t even think about hiding any of these items inside the bus while you take the rest of your luggage to customs & immigration. The bus gets checked too and you might just end up in bigger trouble!

Itinerary from Penang to Singapore

Singapore to Penang by Bus

Duration: 9.5 hours
Cost: 97 MYR ($20.50)
Duration: 9.5 hours
Cost: 97 MYR ($20.50)

New Asian Express offers two bus trips from Penang to Singapore every day. A ticket costs 97 MYR ($20.50) when you book via BookAway. Travel time is 9.5-10 hours.

Bus schedules from Singapore to Penang

Bus CompanyScheduleCosts
New Asian Express09:30-19:30
97 MYR ($20.50)
Check Bus Tickets

Apart from being a direct trip, what we love about the bus is that it departs from Komtar Terminal, which is within walking distance from most hotels in Penang.

The bus arrives at Golden Mile Complex, located some 3 km northeast of downtown Singapore. From here, you can simply take the train, a bus, or a taxi to your hotel.

Customs & Immigration

Your bus will make two stops for customs and immigration – once in Johor Bahru for the Malaysian side and then another time at Woodlands Checkpoint for the Singapore side. Your first stop happens around 9 hours into your journey.

For both checkpoints, you’ll have to get off your bus with all your belongings, present your passport to the immigration officers, and have your luggage checked for customs.

Depending on the number of people at that time, the entire process takes 20 to 30 minutes on each side of the border. Remember which bus you’re with and come back as soon as you’re cleared!

Penang to Singapore by Flight

Duration: 2.5 hours
Cost: 135 MYR ($29)
Duration: 2.5 hours
Cost: 135 MYR ($29)

The flight from Singapore to Penang takes only 1.5 hours, but you’ll need transfers to and from the airports.

Step 1: George Town to Penang Airport by Taxi or Bus

Duration: 30 minutes
Cost: 30 MYR ($6)
Duration: 30 minutes
Cost: 30 MYR ($6)

From George Town, you’ll first have to take a taxi or a bus to Penang Airport, which is located 18 km south.

The taxi is more expensive with fares from 30 MYR ($6), but you’ll have the assurance of reaching the airport in around 30 minutes.

The bus, on the other hand, only costs 3 MYR ($0.60). However, they also make a lot of stops. Travel time could take an hour or more and you don’t want to be stuck in traffic when trying to catch a flight!

Step 2: Penang to Singapore by Flight

Duration: 1hr 25m
Cost: 70 MYR ($15)
Duration: 1hr 25m
Cost: 70 MYR ($15)

Air Asia, Jetstar, Silk Air and Singapore Airlines offer several flights daily from Penang to Singapore. If you’re looking for the cheapest rates, you’ll most probably find it with Air Asia. You can get a ticket for only 70 MYR ($15) if you book really early!

The flights depart from Penang International Airport and arrive at Singapore Changi Airport. Travel time is about 1.5 hours

Check Flights with Skyscanner

Step 3: Singapore Airport to Downtown Singapore by Minibus

Duration: 30 minutes
Cost: 9 SGD ($6.50)
Duration: 30 minutes
Cost: 9 SGD ($6.50)

From Singapore Airport, you’ll have to travel west for 20 km to reach your hotel in the city centre.

You have several choices to get to downtown Singapore: a city shuttle that costs 9 SGD ($6.50), a taxi from 25 SGD ($18.50), the train for 2.70 SGD ($2), or the public bus for 2 SGD ($1.70). For more details, you can visit our page on travelling to and from Singapore Airport.

We prefer the city shuttle because it provides a good mix of speed, comfort and budget. Also, they offer free drop-off to almost all hotels in the city. You can buy a ticket at the airport arrivals hall but if you want to skip the queues, you can also book your ride online beforehand on Klook. Either way, it costs 9 SGD ($6.50).

Check City Shuttle Tickets with Klook

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