Having come up to Singapore just a day earlier by flight, I opted for a cheaper and slightly more accessible mode of transport back to Kuala Lumpur. There are a multitude of operators running buses between Singapore and KL everyday with varying levels of service quality and timing, leaving the choice of services up to the passengers themselves.
Aeroline is one of the more premium operators, offering more onboard frills than other operators do. With Aeroline, for starters, you get better seats, onboard entertainment, hot food, and a hot drink. I had been intending to try their bus services for quite some time, so I opted for the 3:30 pm Aeroline departure from the HarbourFront Centre.
First posted 12 April 2020. Updated 15 March 2023.
Buying my tickets
I bought my ticket from the Aeroline website. This ride cost me RM 120.51, which, while more expensive than the promo fare for my Malindo flight to Changi, is cheaper than an average fare on Air Asia.
Passenger check in at HarbourFront Centre
Aeroline departs from the HarbourFront Centre in downtown Singapore, accessible via the Circle Line and Northeast Line on the MRT network. Passengers have to “check-in” for the bus service at least 30 minutes before departure at the Aeroline office on 2nd floor.
I was slightly delayed here as I made a detour to purchase some snacks, but I’d still recommend adhering to the 30 minutes rule as it can take some effort to navigate from the MRT station to the Aeroline office.
Check-in requires passengers to present their “Pin Number, Confirmation email, and credit card” at the counter. The Pin Number here refers to a code that is generated and included in the confirmation email. A boarding ticket/boarding pass will be presented to you upon check-in. This is required for you to be able to board the bus, which makes the check-in an essential step.
The office has a small waiting area for early passengers. As it was close to boarding time, we were soon led downstairs to the bus boarding area by a member of staff.
Departure from HarbourFront Centre
We departed on time, and were soon cruising on the Ayer Rajah Expressway. Aeroline utilises the Tuas Second Link which is usually faster than the Causeway. It took us just over 35 minutes to reach the Tuas Immigration Checkpoint.
A tip that I’d previously received from a Singaporean immigration officer is that as long my biometrics were recorded on my arrival into Singapore, I am able to utilise the Singaporean autogates on my exit from the city-state. I availed myself of the autogates at Tuas, and I must say they were much quicker compared to queuing up for the manned counters.
Once across the Tebrau Straits, we were met with a massive traffic crawl heading into the Sultan Abu Bakar Complex for border control. This was personally unprecedented as the previous times I took the bus across the Second Link, the traffic was usually clear on the Malaysian side. I’d estimate the crawl took up around 45 minutes of our journey time, which had the effect of pushing our journey time into the 7 hour range.
Cabin & Onboard Amenities
Aeroline’s coaches accomodate only 30 passengers on the upper deck in a 2-1 seat configuration, which translates into 10 rows of seats.
The seats themselves are the most comfortable coach seats I’ve sat in so far, with a huge amount of legroom and padding.
There is a side table provided for every seat, as well as USB charging ports. If USB ports are not your thing, then there is also a wall plug located on the side wall.
Onboard Amenities – In-seat entertainment
Every has an entertainment unit attached to the seatback. Headphones are provided though I didn’t utilise them. The choice of films and music was relatively limited, but its inclusion is already a step up from most operators.
Plus, I think most passengers would prefer to stream movies and music from their own devices these days.
Aeroline provides a hot meal and a hot drink, served by a friendly onboard steward. The meal on my bus was a simple 3 dish meal with rice, consisting of a fish in some sauce, green beans, and some fish paste wrapped in dried tofu skin. It was actually quite a tasty meal, and beats the meals served aboard KTMB’s intercity trains.
An Aeroline branded bottle of water is also given to every passenger upon boarding, which is a really nice touch, although this is actually common practice for bus operators. Coffee was also available for passengers to order.
Arrival at Sunway Pyramid
The journey ultimately took 7 hours, no thanks to the crawl after the crossing. I’d manage to sleep for most of the journey until our arrival into Sunway Pyramid.
I’d initially expected Sunway Pyramid to have a dedicated bus platform. However, it turned out to be the regular public bus stop right outside the mall by the NPE. Its not exactly an ideal arrangement as the stop is usually crowded with taxis hogging the bus bay, which means buses cannot approach the kerb.
Sunway Pyramid is a mall located in Subang Jaya, a suburb of Kuala Lumpur. It is connected to the transit network via an elevated Bus Rapid Transit line. I won’t recommend this particular route unless Sunway Pyramid is convenient for you personally. Aeroline also runs buses to 1Utama (listed as Bandar Utama on their website) and Jalan Ampang in central Kuala Lumpur, which is far more convenient for tourists than 1Utama or Pyramid.
It turned out to be a very comfortable ride on an Aeroline bus. It is also worth noting that they also serve other destinations beyond Singapore, namely Penang and Johor Bahru, from a variety of stops in the Klang Valley (including Sunway Pyramid of course). If you don’t mind paying more than the usual fare, I’d certainly recommend Aeroline as an option for the longer distance bus routes.