Getting ready for this trip was a lot easier than most of the other trips we’ve taken, probably because it was short and relatively inexpensive. We only spent two nights in Kuala Lumpur, so the packing was easy. We didn’t even pack check-in bags. We just had two medium-sized carry-ons. That was the first time I’ve ever taken a flight and not had check-in bags. It was actually really nice, not having to worry about waiting on the baggage to reach the carousels, and it saved us some money. Tiger Airways charges extra for checked in bags. I think that’s starting to be a fairly common practice with all airlines though. I remember reading something recently about a few airlines in the US taking up the practice as well, which came as quite a shock as it had been free for as long as I could remember.
The first thing we did to get ready for this trip was to book the tickets. We decided to take Tiger Airways because it offered the lowest price. Some people prefer to fly in style; we prefer to save our money so we can spend it at our destination. The flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur is only 30 to 40 minutes, so the quality of the seats or service on the plane wasn’t really a factor anyways. How much comfort do you need on such a short flight?
The next thing we did was find a hotel room to book. I’d never tried to book a room over the internet before, so I wasn’t sure where to begin, or what site to trust. The first website I came across mentioned a cheaply priced hotel called Hotel Chinatown 2. It had a lot of customer reviews on it. All of them said the place is a good deal for the money you spend, that the rooms seem a bit small, and that the air conditioning is cold. Some also complained about thin walls. We thought about it and realized that we were only going to spend two nights there. And it really would just be the nights. During the day and the evening we would be out and about, checking out Kuala Lumpur, so who cares if it’s a bit noisy, or a bit small? At least the air conditioning would be cold, right? We did a little more research (i.e. Googling) to assure ourselves that the hotel was actually real and not just some rip-off, and when we were both satisfied, we found a booking site that uses secure transactions and paid a 10% down-payment and a booking fee of 2 USD.
The next thing, and last thing, that we had to worry about was our cats. We love them, but every time we want to go on a trip, they’re a problem. I had sent a text to the lady that normally watches them for us, but she hadn’t responded. On Sunday, the day before our trip, my wife also sent a message, but again, no response. Not wanting to wait until the last minute, hoping we’d get a reply to our texts, I went ahead and asked the maid if she could watch the cats for us. I was surprised at how happy she was to help out. So, I guess things turned out for the best. The cats didn’t have to be transported to someone else’s house for cat-sitting and we got to save time and money. If you’re not familiar with cats, not having to move them is a good thing because cats really freak out in new environments they get dumped into, especially if there are other cats. It can cause a lot of stress and can even be hazardous to their health.
The night before our trip we were both excited and stayed up late. I don’t think I managed to get to sleep until 4:30 am, and then I was up again at 8 am to make sure we were ready to leave on time. Well, 8 am is when I actually got out of bed. My cats got noisy and woke me up at 6:45 am. I never managed to get back to sleep. I guess they knew something was up and they wanted us to know they didn’t like it. Not a good start right? Even so, I was pumped about our trip and didn’t let it slow me down. (That would come later.) Despite getting up early, we didn’t manage to get out the door until almost 10:30 am, so we had to take a cab to get to the airport in time for our flight.