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Budget for Langkawi?

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Budget for Langkawi?


I am travelling to the Pelangi beach resort soon and have been trying to work out how much to bring with me? The restaurants, Spas, Water Sports, Trips all sound fantastic but I wonder for a stay of say 5 days, how much should I bring? I'd like to be able to try most of the facilities at least once.

Can anyone suggest a budget?

Also is there anything that you should simply not miss when on Langkawi?

What is the shopping like? If I am also staying in KL for a few days should I keep shopping for there or is Langkawi just as good?

Any assistance would be appreciated.


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1. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Hi dudley06, I spent a week in Langkawi in 2001 and 2 weeks in 2002. I didn't stay at the Pelangi but I went for a stroll around one day and it seemed like a lovely resort. Langkawi is VERY cheap. Food and drink are so reasonable. (Check out Champor Champor restaurant.) Don't even worry about money. It will go a long way. Pelangi Beach is in Pantai Cenang which is a fairly quiet resort. Personally I loved it because it was so laid back and I had been doing a lot of travelling and wanted somewhere just to chill out. It probably wouldn't be for everyone. If you're into loud bars/nightclubs I wouldn't recommend it. There is plenty of sightseeing around the island and it's easy to get around. Taxis are dirt cheap. As for shopping, you won't get an awful lot. Shop in KL. There's some huge malls with plenty of shops. The only one I can think of offhand is LOT 10. (It's HUGE! I think that's the place that has telephones all around in case you can't find an exit!) All in all you'll have a great holiday. Malaysia is beautiful and the people are wonderful. I'd go back tomorrow!

PS Head down to Chinatown and Bintang in KL at night. Really buzzing.

Kuala Lumpur...
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2. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Dia dhuit dudley, your fellow countryman has provided some very good advice.

Pelangi beach resort is a lovely resort,as this resort was constructed to host and provide accommodation to the Commonwealth Heads of Government.

As you checked in to the airy lobby, the inviting pool is there,and further across is the blue yonder.

I assumed in your hotel booking, breakfast is provided--in this resort hotel, breakfast is not of the continental type, it is lavish American breakfast buffet.

My suggestion is to have it around 0900-0930, and hoping you have a big appetitie, then instead of breakfast , you could be having your brunch. Therefore, saving you to have a lunch meal.

Your fellow countryman is quite right to say that Langkawi and the most of KL is relatively cheap, especially taking into account FOREX.Let's take for example: your one Irish Punt is equivalent to Ringgit Malaysia 5.66 (of course Ireland has also adopted the Euro currency).

For RM5.66, you could have a can of coke and also a plate of rice with chunks of vegetables and meat.

As for taking the watersports (e.g. jet-ski, parasailing), do negotiate with the vendors. They will first start off with an exhorbitant price, as they are aware of the power of your currency. A 30mins jet-ski should be around RM60.00 but not above RM80.00, whilst for parasailing, it is around RM80-100.00.

Do please be very careful when indulging watersports and be alert of your surrounding at all times. There could be novices out there.

There is also one reason, why they will start off on a high price, is the place that you are staying. For the locals, Pelangi is considered a high-end resort hotel. For the price you pay for a night, the locals could rent a house for a month. Do bear this in mind.

But of course, given the economics of things, let's be reasonable to them also--most probably what you pay to them, certain percentage has to pay towards the loan they took out for the jetski and also to feed their family.

As for spa, and in all cases, spa in Malaysia's luxury hotels is very cheap in comparison to European countries. Of course, it is not the Sothy's. As a general guideline, a spa session for an hour, including usage of the jacuzzi, sauna, body massage is around RM150-RM200.This rate is applicable in KL luxury spa resort too, maybe RM50-100 extra.

Coming back to meals--a decent meal in a hotel F&B outlet where you have a soup, salad, T-bone steak, dessert and coffee& tea, and a can of beer, is around RM65.00/person, whereas in eateries across the road from your hotel, for the same, maybe around RM40.00. Then again, in all things said, quality of the preparation, presentation of the food, ambience, attentiveness of staff, all have a bearing at the end of the day.

Some eateries' food may taste like overnight leftover, but your table is right on the beach, with the opportunity for a captivating sunset.

What is shopping like in Langkawi, if to compare with KL, well then it is very mellow, not much selection and fashion may not be uptodate.

I personally do not care much about shopping in Langkawi, except for the duty free cigarettes and liquors. It is cheaper to drink lager than coke on this duty free island.

there are few shopping places in the town of Kuah (about 15 minutes drive from the hotel) and also at a place known as Oriental Village (northwest of the hotel). It is also the point for the cable ride up to mat cincang mountain. This could be one thing not to miss whilst in langkawi.

There is also an Underwater World, few metres in the south from the hotel, but I think you could give it amiss, since you will be in KL, and visit the latest Aquaria(90metres in length underwater aquarium). We will come to that later.

Since you are into watersports, and if you do snorkelling and/or scuba diving, I suggest taking the catamaran to Pulau Payar Marine Park. The cost is about RM150.00 for an 6 hours excursion, i.e. transfer from your hotel to the Kuah jetty to board the catamaran to the Marine park (about 30-45mins depending on sea current condition), there is a plankton, where the catamaran takes berth, then your adventure begins. You could snorkel all the way from the plankton to the shoreline and be mesmerised by the corals.

Just few yards away from the shoreline, baby sharks and other fishes will swim up to your feet. And even at waist level, you could still see your feet. Crystal clear.

Then on board the plankton, buffet lunch is served and there is even shower facilities.

Scuba diving can also be arranged and a certified PADI instructor is also onboard the catamaran. Do not forget your dive logbook. For full set of equipment rental and three dives, the price is RM350.00

This is the proper way to go to Pulau Payar and do the activities.

There will be cheaper option, for much lesser price, but it is on fisherman's trawlers, a simple styrofoam packed lunch and no shower facilities, and in terms of safety, whether the boat is properly insured and allowed to carry passengers for this trip.

Do bear this in mind.

Another thing you may not want to miss whilst in Langkawi, is to rent a simple car (for about RM60.00 aday) and drive round the island at your leisurely pace and take in the sights of the scenic shoreline roads. Fuel will be at your cost, but it is unlimited mileage. Fuel is priced at RM1.92.litres. Roads are well posted and all in good condition--asphalt.

Hope that covers Langkawi.

Now onto KL, and the Aquaria. As mentioned earlier, quite an interesting worthwhile visit,whilst in KL, besides stretching the neck to take in the sight of the Petronas Twin Tower.

Aquaria is linked through an air-conditioned tunnel within SuriaKLCC. SuriaKLCC is one of KL shopping haven.

Have you decided where to stay in KL?

Then I could provide assistance with your mode of transporttation to get to certain places from your hotels.

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3. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Hi Kiara,

That was great, really informative, in KL I am staying in the Mandarin Oriental so can you help me too? Sorry Dudley. I know the KLCC is next door but I think it might be very high end prices, is this true? and what other malls are must visit places? I want to pay high st type prices, or somewhere in between those and Gucci. Interested in shoes and dresses etc?

Kuala Lumpur...
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4. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Slainte juicyjules, yes, Mandarin Oriental is at the high end price.

Well for its locality being adjacent to the Petronas Twin Towers, linked to Suria KLCC, 5 minutes stroll to LRT station through SuriaKLCC(KLCC-Putra Line), a nice park with a fountain to stroll on, linked to the 90metres length underwater aquarium-- there is a price to match.

Suria KLCC has a mixture of shops catering for various levels of demographic: there are boutiques and also high st shops and two department stores-Isetan and Parkson grand.

For a wider choice and as you mentioned between High St and Gucci, another mall is the MidValley Megamall.

Frankly, it is the perception of people, Marks and Spencer is a high street store in England, but over here, it is considered a store warranting presence in SuriaKLCC--and even had Her Royal Highness to open it--the plaque with Her Royal seal is displayed proudly at the entrance to the shop.

Just to give you an idea, as being British educated, I still go to M&S for my clothes and biscuits. Three pairs of M&S cotton socks goes for RM70.00, a pair of short sleeve linen shirt goes for RM280.00, whilst the richtea biscuites goes for RM7.80. A can of M&S range of soup is RM7.00-9.50.

Leeds, United...
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5. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Yo Duds,

We stayed at the Pelangi last August for 9 nights. I took £1000 worth of MR in cash.

We ate at every meal time in the resort and drunk four or five cocktails in the lounge in the evening. I changed £300 worth of MR back into sterling at Changi airport.

Regarding the shops - better bargians and bigger choice in KL.

We even had three spa sessions in the resort.

We found it hard to spend the money - far cheaper than any Spanish type holiday.

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6. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Hello Dudley,

I think one of the greatest things about Langkawi, and all of Malaysia really, is how cheaply you can have an excellent time. It’s not to say you can’t spend a lot of money but you certainly have the option of having an excellent vacation for very little.

Since everyone is so different I can’t really tell you exactly what you will need but I can give you an Idea of costs. This will hopefully let you figure it out for yourself or at least get close.

Eating and Drinking

If you eat the exotic and tasty local food you will be hard pressed to spend more than RM 8 per person per meal. There are many places around the island serving Malaysian and Chinese food in authentic Asian style. Expect to get excellent rice and noodle dishes for around RM 4. You can have the world famous Satay, wonderful skewers of grilled meat, for RM 0.30-0.50 per stick or less. Langkawi is the cheapest place in Malaysia to get alcohol as well since the entire island is duty free. Beer at a resort will be about the same price as in Europe and beer in town will be cheaper. Eating at a resort or hotel will range from RM 25 up to RM 120 or more for the nicer places. It’s not hard to get a nice meal at a resort at the lower range though.


Snorkel tours start at about RM 80 and go up to RM 240 for the really nice ones. Again prices depend on time of year, how busy they are, and your bargaining skills.

The go cart track costs RM 35.

The cable car costs RM 15.

Underwater World is RM18.

Galeria Perdana RM2.

Croc farm RM 5.

Getting Around

Rental cars start at RM 50 and you can get something very nice for RM 80. Free parking is readily available. The island is small and gas is cheap so you won’t spend a whole lot of cash on petrol.


Shopping is generally good in Langkawi. Yes you won’t have the huge selection of KL just because of the size difference but there should be more than enough for the tourist shopper. The shopping is very cheap and they should have many great souvenirs for you. There are very cheap t-shirts which make great gifts for friends, children, and neighbors (RM 5 and under). Clothes in general are pretty cheap, strangely luggage is also VERY cheap in Langkawi. You can find electronic toys and all kinds of nic-nacks cheaply as well. There are numerous liquor and cigarette shops as well. Langkawi also has night markets that you should not miss. They are a great mix of food, fake items, and stuff you will never need but wind up buying. The night markets typically start at around 6 PM and can go until after 10 PM. Its in Kuah most nights but in Cenang on Thursday and Tanjung Rhu on Fridays. You also have a mall with name brand shopping on Langkawi but I’m not big on that. “Most” of the time name brand goods are cheaper or the same price in your home country. My advice is that if you see something you like in Langkawi or KL buy it. The price difference between the two may be RM 1 which isn’t worth passing it up. That way you wont miss out.

Good luck and enjoy your trip.

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7. Re: Budget for Langkawi?

Hi all,

Just wanted to say a big thanks for all your help and advice. We're prepared for bargaining and generally having a good time.