Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Europe 2011 - Day 13 Munich to Paris

Date of travel: 19 April 2011

ICE trains from Munich to Paris, €39 per person

Comfy seats with tray tables for everyone
Having survived the 11-minute train change from Prague to Munich, we decided not to risk it again. Prebook your tickets from and you will have several options for trains from Munich to Paris. ICE trains takes approximately 5hr45mins whereas TGV took 6hr15mins without needing to transfer. We opted for the latter and had a much more enjoyable ride compared to ICE. Good choice seeing how much luggage we had. The doors to the train only opens 20mins before departure. It had tray tables on each seat, and luggage compartment in every coach. Only problem was, the toilets were airplane sized, and it ran out of water!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Europe 2011 - Day 10,11,12 Dedicated to Munich (Part 3 of 3)

Eating in Munich
Date of Travel: 16-18 April 2011

Of my entire trip in Europe, here in Munich lies my utmost favourite joint. I dedicate this post to only 2 restaurants in Munich, which left such a lasting impression on me.

1. 2ponti Caffe & Bistro
This small joint is located between the Isator Station and Deutsches Museum. It serves fabulous italian pasta and desserts for a very small price. The host is very hospitable, who will try to please you though he doesn't speak much English. I hunger for their pasta and Limone dessert, till today. Their official website is

Set Lunch came with a free salad with balsamic vinegar. Simple and delicious

Monday, December 19, 2011

Europe 2011 - Day 10,11,12 Dedicated to Munich (Part 2 of 3)

Date of Travel: 16-18 April 2011

Shopping in Munich

When I asked myself, what is there to buy from Germany, I didn't have a clue. I tried thinking of all the stuff in my house that is German made but I came up blank. Slowly but surely, things started to emerge. What do people buy from Germany?
- Pots & Pans brands like WMF and Silit
- German kitchen knives and anything made of German steel
- Army knives
- Jigsaw Puzzles by the original Ravensburger
- Outdoors equipment, like the brand Deuter
- Chocolates like Kinder, Milka and Ritter Sport

1. Globetrotters
Head to Isator for a huge Outdoors shop called Globetrotters. They sell anything from hiking, canoeing, to biking and camping gear. Even if you can't bring anything home, it's great seeing all the cool stuff they have over there.
Items bought:
Army pocket knives, Meru Brand: €4.99 each x 4 pcs (cool souvenir)
Water proof bicycle seat cover: €6

Friday, December 16, 2011

Europe 2011 - Day 10,11,12 Dedicated to Munich (Part 1 of 3)

Date of Travel: 16-18 April 2011

Sightseeing in Munich
Schloss Nymphenburg Castle - most visited tourist site in Munich

1. Schloss Nymphenburg Castle
This venue is supposedly the most crowded sight in Munich. Took tram 17 that led directly to the front, but be prepared for a long walk through the gardens to get inside. After all, what's a castle without a humongous garden. Very picturesque, but I wasn't into history. Entrance fees are €8.50.
No photos inside the castle - we didn't enter LOL!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

"Free" Pick-A-Seat on AirAsia

AirAsia charges for seat allocation on all their flights. Prices for AirAsiaX are much higher than AirAsia, but nonetheless, there will be charges. When I travel on a short 1-2 hour flight journey, I normally don't mind where I am seated. As long as I am seated together with my traveling party. And there have been many cases where we were separated apart.

This is a loophole that I chanced upon awhile back. It still works till today. Remember my Phuket booking this morning? This is the steps to take.

1. Login to AirAsia and Manage My Booking

2. View the particular booking you wish to allocate seats
Before: No seat allocated

3. Click on "Web Check In Now"

Operation AirAsia 10 cent succeeded

How was your booking experience? Did any of my tips help?

I finally managed to get this at approximately 1.30am. For a public holiday weekend, I'm quite happy. Do or die, I wanted to get the cheapest tickets possible, and refused to pay the convenience fee. Miraculously, Direct Debit worked for me via RHB.
Even with Fuel Surcharge, this is one of the cheapest air tickets to Phuket I've ever gotten

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

AirAsia vs Scoot Airlines

Have you heard of Scoot Airlines? They are based in Singapore and is a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines. Set to launch their inaugural flight to Sydney in mid-2012, bookings is rumoured to begin in the first quarter of 2012. Could AirAsia have a rival at last?

Coming 8 Dec 2011: 10 cent seats on AirAsia (updated)

I was wrong with my predictions on Coming 8 Dec 2011: RM10 seats on AirAsia?

The good news is, it's not RM10 but RM0.10!
The bad news is, they have yet to open the Christmas 2012 travel period.

For those who have yet to try, in conjunction with AirAsia's 10th Anniversary celebration, they will be offering 10 cent seats, i.e. RM0.10 seats for certain destinations. Their teasers claimed it as:

(From AirAsia Facebook Page) 
"Bangkok, Bali, Hanoi, Langkawi, Phuket, Kuching, Hadyai, Penang, Medan and so much more are on sale from RM0.10 onwards!"

SMS received for Citibank-AirAsia card members. Yet another awesome benefit of subscribing

(From SMS for Citibank-AirAsia Credit Card Holders)
"AWESOME Sale! Fly to Bali, SG, Hanoi, Jakarta, Phuket, PG, KK &more from 10sen! Book 8 - 11 Dec. Fly from 1/7 - 27/10/12."

Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #5

Tip #5: Prepare Your Payment

AirAsia offers 2 major forms of payment for Malaysians:

1) Direct Debit
If you are trying to purchase tickets at midnight, I would advise against using this method because it is an extra complication added to the booking process. The booking page would need to connect to the bank you had selected, wait for you to authorise the payment with your login and password, then hope the bank website will then send the payment confirmation back to AirAsia's page and hope it will refresh the booking. Too many extra steps, when millions of people are actively accessing their website. Also, you need to check if your bank closes their Internet banking facilities after midnight. Overall, not worth the RM8/person/way saved

Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #4

Tip #4: Prepare Your Data

Every account comes with a list of "My family & friends". For every person you intend to book for, make sure his/her name is included in your list. Have all the required details ready:
  • Title
  • Gender
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Nationality
  • Date of Birth
  • Passport Number
  • Passport Issuing Country
  • Passport Expiry Date
Even though you have all of them included in the list, you need to have a physical copy of this as well. This is because during the booking process, if you are unable to retrieve that list for whatever reason, you still can type it in manually if you had to.

Related Posts:
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #1 
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #2
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #3 
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #4
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #5

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #3

Tip #3: Prepare Equipment

Historically, 9 out of 10 times, AirAsia will launch their cheap tickets at midnight at Malaysian time (+8:00GMT). Only one time did they launch at noon a few years back, and their servers could not handle the load. Ever since then, it has always been at midnight.

Therefore, make sure you have access to a reasonably fast computer and fast Internet at midnight. As a matter of preference, I use Mozilla Firefox with all my AirAsia bookings. It seems to be well supported and more stable than using Internet Explorer. Clicking on Refresh can also help to Resend the data without have to start all over. Make sure your software is updated with the latest version!

Also, getting cheap tickets are like going to battle. Try to control your work environment, and be prepared to stay up till 3am if you have to. Let it be as peaceful and calm as possible, in order for you to concentrate on the booking process.

Related Posts:
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #1 
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #2
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #3 
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #4
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #5

Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #2

Tip #2: Keep Informed

So how do I know when AirAsia's flights are open for booking? Find out whatever means of communication that AirAsia has with the public, and sign up for it! A basic must is to sign up for an account with This is also to keep track of your itineraries, which I will stress on its importance later.

Next up is, find out whatever card AirAsia is affiliated with, and sign up for it! At the time of writing, there is the AirAsia Citibank Mastercard and CIMB Bank AirAsia Savings Account, and the latest BIG Shot loyalty program. What many people may not realise is, that these cards get SMS notifications about deals and launches before the email gets to you. If you aren't online several times a day, SMS would be a necessity.

Coming 8 Dec 2011: RM10 seats on AirAsia?

The teasers are out, my predictions are moving closer to reality.

Login at midnight, 8 December 2011 to secure your Christmas 2012 holidays!
Teasers for launch of new booking period
I stress again, do not expect free/extremely cheap seats. It's for Christmas. As long as you are prepared to pay a little more for your holiday, you won't leave empty handed.

Prepare yourselves with the booking process:
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #1
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #2
Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #3

Booking Cheap Tickets on AirAsia #1

Tip #1: Know Your Travel Date

What's the very most important thing when booking tickets? Knowing your travel date. As mentioned in my previous post about Coming Soon: Free Seats on AirAsia?, this month will see the launch of 27 Oct 2012 until XX Jan 2013. Therefore, it is best to plan your travel date for this period only. Anything earlier would not be as cheap as the previous round of bookings.

Oct-Dec includes a very hot period of School Holidays, Christmas and New Year's. For starters, you need to know when are the public holidays and school holidays. If you must travel on those dates, then come up with a list of possible dates. Or if you hate crowds, know which dates to avoid!

Public Holidays 2012
Sun  1 Jan 2012 - New Year's Day
Mon 23 Jan 2012 - Chinese New Year
Tue 24 Jan 2012 - Chinese New Year
Sun 05 Feb 2012 - Birth of the Prophet Muhammad
Tue 07 Feb 2012    - Thaipusam
Tue 01 May 2012 - Labour Day
Sat 05 May 2012    - Wesak Day
Sat 02 Jun 2012 - Agong's Birthday
Mon 06 Aug 2012    - Nuzul al Quran
Sun 19 Aug 2012    - Hari Raya Puasa
Mon 20 Aug 2012    - Hari Raya Puasa
Fri 31 Aug 2012 - National Day
Sun 16 Sep 2012 - Malaysia Day
Fri 26 Oct 2012 - Hari Raya Haji
Tue 13 Nov 2012    - Deepavali
Thu 15 Nov 2012 - Awal Muharram
Tue 11 Dec 2012 - Sultan of Selangor's Birthday
Tue 25 Dec 2012 - Christmas Day
Tue 01 Jan 2013 - New Year's Day
Thu 24 Jan 2012 - Birth of the Prophet Muhammad

Monday, December 5, 2011

Coming Soon: Free Seats on AirAsia?

Based on my experience with AirAsia:
  • Free or RM1 or RM10 seats are offered once a year
  • Booking 1 year in advance is the cheapest, 90% of the time
  • Bookings for specific dates are opened 3-months at a time
Currently, bookings on AirAsia are available up to 27 October 2012 only. They should be opening up the next block of booking dates within this month. Their website is already preparing for it, look at the picture below. Since it will be for the peak season of Xmas, New Year's and School Holidays, I do not believe it will be "Free". Nonetheless, it will be cheaper to book it now than later (90% of the time).

Saturday, December 3, 2011

3D/2N Guilin-Yangshuo Itinerary

Date of Travel: 14 March 2009

Yangshuo, surrounded by karst peaks and 2 rivers, makes it a popular destination

Thanks to AirAsia, we can now fly directly to Guilin, China. A surprisingly high number of people are now turning to Guilin for its picturesque beauty and cool weather. Here's an itinerary that will show you the highlights and how much it costs.

3 Days / 2 Nights in Yangshuo

Day 1

  • Arrive Guilin Airport and met by driver
  • Transfer 2 hours by car to Yangshuo, check-in to a hotel near West St
  • Walk around town for some shopping, eating etc.
  • Pickup from hotel 6:45pm to go to Liu Sanjie Lights show. There is a 15-min walk from the main gate, and the show lasts 1 hour.
  • Meet your driver and transfer back to hotel

  • Outdoor seating area of the Liu Sanjie Lights show

    With the Karst mountains as a backdrop, it is my MUST-SEE activity in Yangshuo

    Even if you don't know the Liu Sanjie story, you can still appreciate the massive scale of this performance