Friday, February 19, 2010

Port Klang, Malaysia, Star Terminal-brickbats

I am a great fan of Malaysia, however recently I found myself very embarrassed on 3 counts among a ship load of people visiting Port Klang.

First was the taxi's at the Star terminal (non of which I saw had meters) who were charging US$100 to Kuala Lumpur (RM350). Here I saw many passengers turn around and go back on board ship. Nobody was happy about it. We opted for US$10 (RM35) trip to Port Klang station where we had a good trip into KL "Sentral" for RM 4.40. on KTM

Once in the city, the group with us expressed their disappointment to see so much rubbish and
filth littering every possible corner, let alone the habit of spitting in the streets. So much so that
they opted to not eat anything anywhere. My second embarrassment especially as KL is now the
dirtiest city in S.E.Asia.

Shops and shop keepers were the saving grace as without exception were pleasant and
accommodating and goods sold generally well priced. As foreigners they generally were not fleeced as in nearby countries.

Third embarrassment was the return ride to Port Klang on KTM. We purchased 8 tickets in one lot from the ticket counter at Kuala Lumpur station from there to Port Klang and paid the correct fee. The embarrassment came when 2 senior KTM inspectors came to us before Klang station and found that we had been given 5 correct tickets and 3 tickets to Sugai Buloh. They immediately demanded we pay fines of RM30 each to them. In return we demanded they accompany us to the Police station to make a report. Thankfully common sense prevailed and although they kept the offending tickets, we were allowed to continue our journey.

Once aboard ship we could only find 1 couple who would come to Malaysia again and that would
be for shopping and NEVER via Port Klang again.

I see little point is the country spending huge amounts of money on promotion, when a visitor has nothing but disappointment. This was reinforced by my son, a top travel agent in Brisbane, who having just completed a 3 month tour of S.E.Asia, said to me “I know you love Malaysia, but I can't put hand on heart and promote Malaysia ahead of other S.E.Asia destinations.” I guess that was a fourth embarrassment.

I'm way too embarrassed to post any photos at all.

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