Travel by train from Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS Bus Terminal) to Padang Besar is a good alternative way of getting from Kuala Lumpur to Hat Yai or to the Thailand / Malaysia border.
The ETS TBS to Padang Besar train departs from the Bandar Tasik Selatan (BTS) Railway Station which is attached to TBS Bus Station.
These fast Electric Train Services (keretapi laju) are much quicker than travelling by bus, but currently there is only one direct service from TBS to Padang Besar, so you may want to consider taking the short train ride to KL Sentral Station, where there are more departures heading north to the border.
New ETS Timetable valid from the 1st of December 2019 into 2020.
Latest new train Schedule valid for 2019 and into 2020 (Jadual Perjalanan):
|Train No||Departs BTS / TBS||Arrives P. Besar||Operating Days|
As mentioned above, you have a greater choice of trains departing from KL Sentral Railway Station.
To get to KL Sentral from TBS you can take a cheap KTM Komuter Train (duration 18 minutes) or a KLIA Transit train (duration 10 minutes).
For all trains on the KL Sentral to Padang Besar route (laluan):
EG numbered trains are ETS Gold Services.
Train numbers starting with EP (from KL Sentral) are ETS Platinum Services.
Another way to travel from TBS to Padang Besar by train if all direct services from KL are full (or you want the cheapest way to get to Padang Besar by train) is to take one of the trains on KL Sentral to Butterworth Penang Route and disembark at Bukit Mertajam (BM).
From BM you can then connect to the cheap KTM Kouter Utara (northern commuter line) to Padang Besar.
It's a longer journey, but will save you a few Ringgit (see the fares below).
For all trains heading north from TBS / KL to Padang Besar, see the full ETS timetable using the link below:
Fares for direct Gold ETS train from TBS to Padang Besar cost:
Adult - 77 MYR
Children - 43 MYR
Fares from KL Sentral to Padang Besar:
76 MYR for Adults - 42 MYR for Children.
102 MYR for Adults - 55 MYR for Children.
If you want to go via Bukit Mertajam the whole trip will cost (Adult fare):
ETS Gold 58 MYR plus 10.70 MYR for the Komuter train = 68.70 MYR
ETS Platinum 77 MYR plus 10.70 MYR for the Komuter train = 87.70 MYR
From Padang Besar to Hat Yai Junction Railway Station you can take one of the Shuttle trains:
For long distance trains from Padang Besar to Bangkok (stopping at Surat Thani, Chumphon, Hua Hin) you can take the International Express train.
Another option is to take a minibus / bus to Hat Yai Bus Station form the main land border crossing (located next to the railway station).
Travelling on the ETS trains in Malaysia means you will have to reserve a seat (there are no standing passengers allowed).
You also should book your seats as far in advance as you can as ETS trains are a popular way to travel and can often be fully booked.
To make a reservation / booking you can:
Visit any KTM railway station ticket counter.