If it is your first time driving in Penang, it helps to get a Satellite Navigation app on your smartphone before heading to the island.
If you are the adventurous sort, there are plenty of free and cheap public buses you can board to travel around in George Town. Taxis are also relatively cheap. Airport transfers with Penang Airport Limo service advertise a fixed fare with a standard 4 passenger sedan to a 10 seater van. But, if you are thinking of driving or planning to hire a car, use one or a few of the apps on your smartphone to get you around.
A quick way to get around is to take a taxi from a designated taxi stand, found mostly near hotels and main roads. As the distances on the island are pretty close wherever you choose to go and depending on the time of travel, traffic can sometimes be a nightmare, Taxis tend to charge a fix fare rather than go on the meter. Ask for a quote before you jump on.
Airport Transfers – Limo Service
There is a table of fares at the Penang International Airport and a service counter at the arrival hall where you can purchase a ticket for your travel and head out to the stand for a pick-up. Pass the coupon to the driver and tell him where exactly you are going. Airport transfer limo service are marked differently to the standard taxis, and is the quickest and easiest way to get to your holiday accommodation.
Public Transport – Bus
There are free as well as paid public buses that plough the main routes in George Town and further afield on the island. Taking the bus is a cheap and great way to explore Penang like a locals. Most busses heading to town will end up at the either the Penang Jetty and/or Komtar complex in George Town. Plan your trip, choose your destination and find the routes serviced by the different busses, you may have to take more than one bus to get to your destination but that is all part of the experience. Most busses are also air conditioned, so travel off peak and enjoy your journey.
Driving in Penang
To find your way around, while in Penang, we recommend the following apps:
- NLife Singapore and Malaysia – Apple | Android an offline GPS Navigation App with Maps preloaded. There is 14 day trial period before it locks up so perfect for short holidays. [FREE TO TRY]
- Waze Social GPS Maps and Traffic – Apple | Android get live feed from the people around your route with traffic information requires data (sometimes roaming) on your device to access live maps [FREE]
- Google Maps – for Android devices. We favour this over Apple’s own Map even on iOS devices as it has multiple route feature and sometimes live traffic information depending on your location [FREE]
- Apple Maps – for iOS devices, iPhone and iPad with cellular connection, why not use what is already there. Use of the app for navigation requires data (sometimes roaming) on your device to access live maps [FREE]
- Sygic Singapore & Malaysia: GPS Navigation – Apple | Android an offline GPS navigation app similar to NLife with Maps preloaded. [USD29]
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- TomTom South East Asia [USD49]
- Papago! GPS Navigation SG&MY [USD25]
- Malaysia Map by Streetdirectory [FREE]