Friday, November 23, 2012

From Kuala Lumpur to Chengdu

Day 1 (22 October 2012)

The flight from Sibu to Kuala Lumpur left at 10:35 a.m. However, it arrived at the Kuala Lumpur Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) on time at 12:15 p.m. I hurried to the bus parking lot to catch a 12:30 p.m. bus to KL Sentral so that I would be able to reach Bukit Bintang as soon as possible to change my US dollars to Chinese Reminbi. The exchange rates offered in Sibu was very unattractive, worse than the rates offered by Maybank as at 18 October 2012.

The particular money changer I was looking for was no where to be found when I arrived. It must have relocated elsewhere due to the ongoing construction work there. A friend told me that this particular money changer offered very competitive rates.

Fortunately, there were other money changers on both sides of Bukit Bintang Road. The first two money changers had no stock and the third offered RMB6,100 plus MYR26.50 for my USD1,000. The selling rate was RMB100 for MYR49.50, the same as those offered by money changers at the airport. The buying rate was USD1 to MYR3.0460 while those offered by the money changers at the airport was USD1 for MYR3.000.

For my effort, I saved MYR46 and spent MYR20.20 for bus and monorail fares, a saving of MYR25.80 only for my time and effort. It was not worth it!

The flight from Kuala Lumpur to Chengdu was delayed also. Instead of departing at 6:15 p.m., it departed only at 7:30 p.m.

I arrived at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport at 11:40 p.m. and by the time I exited to Arrival Hall, it was mid-night. As I came out, a lady was holding up my name on a placard. That was great from Traffic Inn. It did not forget to send someone to pick me up. The lady was with the driver.

Thinking that Traffic Inn staff would speak good English, I spoke to her in English. She could only speak in halting English. We spoke little.

After sending me to Traffic Inn, I thought she would come together with me to the reception. Instead, she stayed in the pick up van and I never saw her again. She was quite a looker!

After taking my shower, I only went to bed after 1:10 a.m., 23 October 2012.

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