Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Getting to Johor Premium Outlets and Legoland Malaysia by Bus from Singapore

I've figured out how to get from Singapore's City Center to Johor Premium Outlets and Legoland, by bus, the Do-It-Yourself way because the Johor Premium Outlet Coach only runs on weekends, while tickets for the Legoland Coach service by WTS travel is a hassle to buy (you need to physically go to one of their branches) and you'll have to commit to a fixed travel schedule, which is not so ideal when you arrive past midnight - then go to dinner, the night before.

Taking the bus to get there is quite easy. It's much cheaper too. It's only harder on the way back because you're already tired by then and would willingly pay for the convenience of a coach, had a service been available.

There are several bus stops in Singapore that cater to buses that run the Johor Bahru - Singapore route. The most convenient one I've found if you're living near Singapore's city center is the Bus Stop on Queen Street (near Bugis).

Queen Street bus station.
You can just tell the cab driver to take you to where there are JB buses.
You can opt to take Singapore's local Bus 170,
but we prefer to take yellow Causeway Link (CW2) Bus.
Buses are quite frequent.
We've always seen a bus available for boarding.
You pay as you enter SG$2.40.
 (discount available for kids)
The bus normally leaves after 10mins.
We first tried this when my sister and her friend visited.
You get to Woodlands Checkpoint in less than 30 mins.
The bus drops you off, you clear immigration to exit Singapore, then you go out and board any Causeway Link Bus.

The ride is a short one which takes you across the water to JB.
After a few minutes,
you're already at the Malaysian Immigration.

It got a bit confusing after we cleared immigration because we thought we had to catch another bus to take us to JB Sentral. What we didn't realize is that JB Sentral is the mall connected to the immigration building. All you need to do is follow the signs, it will lead you to the next building where there is a bus terminal at ground level, and restaurants like KFC and Starbucks in the mall.

It's best to go check out the bus schedule first, then grab a bite to eat depending on how much time you need to kill.
This was the schedule for Johor Premium Outlets
the first time we went.
This was the schedule for Legoland,
when we went the last time.

If you have time to eat in JB Sentral, here are some places of interest.

Kopi Bun at RotiBoy.
I think it looks ans smells better than it is.
Sofia loves bread so she was happy.
There was also KFC.
They have potato wedges with cheese.
But Filipinos is Singapore cross the border for KFC because
they serve gravy in Malaysia.
The KFC in the Philippines is still so much better though.

If you are going to Legoland, you need to take LG1 from JB Sentral.

The bus does a quick stop at Larkin, but it generally leaves as scheduled.
Fare is RM5.00  or SG$2 (discounted for kids).

If you are going to Johor Premium Outlets, you need to take JPO1 from JB Sentral.

This bus hardly makes any stops from JB Sentral to JPO.
Fare is RM4.50 or less than SG$2.
It takes around 30 minutes to get there.

For both Legoland and JPO, the bus will also pick you up where it dropped you off for the return trip. The only difference is that Legoland is so new, there is no designated Bus Parking and no bus schedule posted. You need to go and ask Customer Services inside the theme park.

JPO is very organized.
The schedule and bus parking is clearly indicated.
Yahoo. Stores.

Finding bargains always has a degree of luck involved. I guess I'm lucky because every visit, we find a store with really sale stuff, that it makes it worth the trip. The tricky thing is normally, there is only one or two stores like that, so you can imagine, there are probably times when you might not be lucky enough to find something.

On my first visit to JPO, which you can read about here, we found a mother-lode of sale shoes at Vincci (VNC in Manila).
On our second trip, I only bought these.
On our second trip, the store that was really on sale was GAP.
 They were selling dresses at RM20 (SG$8) and tops at RM10 (SG$4).

I love this classy grey dress with cowl neck.
I can't resist a bargain so
I also bought the dresses with the frilly necklines.
I bought them in both colors. Hahaha.

I also bought a tailored black top.
and a Baby Pink Striped Boyfriend Shirt.
I also found a dressy top that fit well.
And a wrap blouse.
On our last trip, we had limited time so I only hit my favorite stores. Cotton-On was really on sale. Enough to make it worth our cab fare. Hooray.

The clincher when taking Causeway Link Buses is that they have no respect for the schedule for the return trips! Twice now, we have taken the JPO1 bus from the Johor Premium Outlets back to JB Sentral, and the bus left way before its scheduled departure time. This means that people who assume they are on time get left behind.

If you are interested in making a day trip out of both Legoland and Johor Premium Outlets, you can take JPO2 from Legoland to take you to Johor Premium Outlets (estimated travel time 45minutes), then you can take the JPO1 from there to go back to JB Sentral. The challenge would be to figure out what time the next bus will pass. We had a very stressful experience because while it sounded good in theory, we planned to take the last bus leaving Legoland at 7:50pm, knowing how unreliable Causeway Link is when it comes to scheduling, we were waiting for the bus as early as 7:30pm... and it never arrived!!! I honestly was quite stressed we would be stranded in the middle of nowhere in JB!!! At first, we were quite relaxed because there was a waiting cab that nobody was taking, so that was our insurance since we were not sure how far or how expensive it was to take a cab from Legoland to JB Sentral or to the Outlets, then the cab disappeared because someone took it!

I even chatted with the cops to ask them if they could give us the number to call a cab, but it seems people don't call for cabs in JB. It's a good thing I saw a cab pass by so we immediately flagged it, this was already a few minutes before 8:30pm so we were waiting and stressing for close to an hour. It's not really easy to ask for an estimate on how much it takes to get to JPO because the cabbie says they are required by law to use the meter. The estimate he gave me was around RM100+ (around SG$50) but it turned out to be a 20 minute drive through the toll-way and the total cost was just a little over RM70 (less than SG$30).

So I suggest, if you want to do both places, and there are cabs available, just take one.
If there are no cabs, you may want to email/ call Mr. JJ who drives a blue Executive Meter Taxi Service.
(+60 13  7881010 jj_mas78@yahoo.com) He's the nice driver who took us from Lego land to Johor Premium Outlets. He told us to just give him a call if we get left by the bus again because he lives 10 minutes away from JPO.

I hope all this information comes in handy. Getting stranded in the middle of nowhere in JB is a very scary thought. just saying.

BTW, to go back, all you need to do is get to JB Sentral, walk to clear immigration, then catch any Causeway Link or Bus170 to cross the border. You will need to pay before boarding. After clearing immigration on the Singapore side, the easiest way is to look for the taxi queue and take one. If you are not tired or in a hurry, you just need to go to the bus stop and take the correct Causeway Link Bus (CW2) or Bus 170 to drop you off back at Queen Street Station.

33 comments:

  1. Hi! This is a very helpful post, thank you!

    We are going to Singapore this May 2-6 and I have also planned an overnight stay in a hotel in JB Sentral for our trip to Legoland and JPO. I would like to seek for your advice on how do you think should I plan my schedule? In Singapore, we are staying at Fragrance Hotel Emerald (since it offered the cheapest price, hehe) I have been informed that it is located in a red light district, but we don't mind :) more important is the price hehe

    I have read some blog posts that buses are found in Jurong East or in Kranji, but I read in your blog that there are also buses in Queen Street bus station. Would you know which train station should we get off to if we will take your advice to ride the causeway link buses from Queen Street bus station? Thanks!

    I hope to receive a reply from you. If possible, I would appreciate it very much if you could kindly send me an email at mcpfernando@yahoo.com.

    Many thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi! I am not 100% sure but i think the bus station is very near Bugis Junction (MRT). You can check the GoThere Singapore website for more specific transport directions from your starting point which includes bus and train options plus estimate cost if you take a cab. Hope this helps! Enjoy :)

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  2. I found myself reading through all your travel posts! Super informative! :) I am envious of your travels with your daughter, it looks really fun! plus of course all the shopping :)

    Oh and I saw Tim in your posts as well! I know him from college and ACLC (Ateneo Christian Life Community)

    Anyway, I just had to share hehe such a small world :)

    Keep on posting! I dream to be able to travel like you do too! :)

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  3. Brilliant post! I certainly like the way you’ve succinctly presented the information. Keep posting great reviews like this! Absolutely fabulous

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  4. Hi, Very elaborate and informative post. Thanks.

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  5. Hi your post was really helpful as we are planning to go malaysia as a side trip in our singapore vacation next week. we will stay overnight at tune hotel, johor and will go to legoland the following day upon check out.
    In going back to singapore, would you happen to know if we can catch a bus from legoland to jb sentral (around 2 - 3 pm) or do we really need to go to JPO for a bus ride to jb sentral? i hope to hear from you as there are no other website i can get any information on how to go back to singapore from legoland. thank you very much!

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    Replies
    1. Hi, you can take the same bus back to JB sentral, but I suggest plan on catching an earlier bus than the one you need as they have a schedule- but they don't really follow it. You might end up cutting it too close if you have any commitments. Enjoy your vacation :)

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  6. I went to JPO but didnt really buy anything. Didnt really find good discounts there. I guess it's luck.

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  7. Hi, May I know if there are a cabs available at Legoland? We plan to book a hostel at bukit indah, but worried cabs are not available at Legoland(6pm). Thanks

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    Replies
    1. There are 1 or 2 cabs, but not a lot. Nothing like a cab line, but that was in November 2012. Maybe your hostel can help arrange one. Happy trip!

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  8. Hi Coley,

    This is exactly what I was looking for. Thank you!

    I'm taking a small kid, too, so wondering how long does the trip takes from the bus terminal and how Sofia managed the long trip.

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    Replies
    1. If I remember right, the bus trip just takes 45mins to an hour from JB Sentral, so it's manageable for an excited kid.

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    2. Good to hear. Thank you!!

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  9. Very informative post! I would like to do two places in JB, probably Hello Kitty Town and JPO... do you know if there are buses from JB Sentral to Hello Kitty Town? Sounds like it would be a hassle to go between the two places.

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    Replies
    1. I had a more difficult time looking for transport information to Hello Kitty Town, but I think it's very close to LegoLand (based on google maps). What you may want to do if there are no buses to HKT from JB Sentral is you can take the bus for Legoland and take a cab from there to HKT. You can also get the number of the cab so he can also pick you up if there is no cab queue at HKT.

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    2. Thanks Coley for your prompt reply. Very useful information.

      http://www.causewaylink.com.my/shopping-bus#/-1/

      I checked the Causeway link website. Found that bus JPO2 can go from HKT to JPO but like you suggested, it doesn't run often and there is a very good chance of missing it. May have to settle for a much more expensive cab ride from HKT to JPO

      Do you know what time JPO is open until? their website is down at the moment.

      Last time (Sep 2012) I went to Legoland from SG (opening day too), I booked with WTS (Groupon) and it wasn't too bad. I never had to go to a WTS office (plus I couldn't, I don't live in SG), everything was done via email.

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  10. Hi! This page was really helpful and very informative as well . I have been to Singapore two times but I had never thought of taking a side trip to Legoland Malaysia but now I will. Thanks for all your input in this page..

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  11. Hi this page has been very very helpful and informative . I have been to Singapore two times but I had never thought of taking a side trip going to Legoland Malaysia but now I am considering it. Thanks for all the wonderful and informative posts..

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  12. very helpful post. Thanks for sharing.

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  13. I just want to clarify something since our hostel is just 10mins walk to Woodlands Checkpoint. From checkpoint, after clearing with Singapore immigration,we'll just ride the Causeway Link Bus that will drop us off at the Malaysian Immigration/JB Sentral? Is this correct? Thank you for your informative blog - Jean A.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, that's correct. Enjoy your trip!

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  14. Hi Coley! This blog will really help me with my "date" with my 7-year old son in a few weeks time. Could you still remember what time is the earliest Causeway Link bus leaving Queen Street Bus Stn.? What is the latest time we can leave JB Sentral to make it back to SG?

    I hope you'll reply. Thanks! :)

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  15. Hi, You can check the bus schedule from their website: http://causewaylink.com.my/singapore-bus#/-1/ but I suggest that you plan with buffer time as the last bus may arrive earlier than their published time. Enjoy your trip! :)

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  16. Hi ü very helpful blog. Was planning on taking the kids to Legoland and Hello Kitty town on November and we want to travel from Singapore to Malaysia via bus ü are there buses from Legoland to HKT? Then we plan on going to JPO after HKT ü then head back to SG after JPO ü until what time do buses from JB operate to take you back to SG? Thanks ü hope to hear from you soon. You can email me at katriengayle@gmail.com ü

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    Replies
    1. Hi Kate, when we went last year - there were no buses from Legoland to HKT but I looked at the map and it seemed close enough. I think you can just take a cab. From our experience, the cab fare is meter-based. enjoy!

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  17. For a group trip to places other than Legoland, for example Johor Premium Outlet, Hello Kitty Town or a seafood dinner elsewhere, the most comfortable and convenient transport option is to hire a private vehicle at your disposal.

    Also, the most popular hotels nearby Legoland are - Traders Hotel, KSL Hotel and Thistle Hotel

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  18. Hi Coley,

    You have a very informative and interesting blog. I'm from a local travel agency specializing in Singapore and Malaysia tourist attractions and hotels.

    Legoland and Universal Studios Singapore are among our top tourist hits. Hence I was attracted to this post in particular.

    Since your blog focuses on travel, it seems like we have some room for collaboration. Would you be interested?

    Cheers,
    Travel Delight
    http://traveldelight.biz
    ask@traveldelight.biz
    +65 8282-1312

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Thanks for your comment. I would be interested in collaboration. Let me drop you an email. Cheers!

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  19. Really Nice outlet. But my Choice is Premium Outlets .I think you should try it once.I am sure you will love it. Well thanks for sharing your blog here...Join The dignitary Shopper Club for on-line access to exclusive coupons,a free dignitary Coupon Book,corporate executive data from your favorite designer brands and additional.

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  20. Hi Coley. Thanks for your information. After I read your blog I still have questions that still not clear. From JB Premium Outlet to JB Central is there a regular bus ? And from JB Central is there a regular bus directly to Singapore ? and until what time ?. What currency you use to pay the bus in JB. Do they received S$ ? Do they give the change ? Thanks before Coley, I hope you can give me the answers of my doubt. GBU.

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    1. There's a bus from JB Premium Outlet to JB Sentral and vice versa. From JB Sentral, there are multiple buses that go to Singapore. I am not sure until what time though because normally the outlet stores close early, so you can leave just after they close and still make it back to Singapore. I remember using Malaysian Ringgit in Malaysia and SGD in Singapore. There are a lot of money changers in JB Sentral. Hope this helps!

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  21. Other than bus, transport to Legoland Malaysia is also possible through taxi and private vans.

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  22. book a private transport at around S$ 180.00 for same day round trip without having to alight at custom. pickup and drop off at your doorstep.

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