7 Hacks How to Plan for your Next Trip

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Planning a long trip can be a daunting task to most of us. Where to begin? How to start? What is the best time? How to save money? It’s easy to get overwhelmed in the beginning, especially when this is your first time travelling. In this posting, i will try to help with some ideas how to move forward.

1. Decide where do you want to go.

This is the most crucial part of your travelling. Defining where you want to go sets a goal to work towards it. A lot of people talk about travel. They never say where they are going, just that they are going. Picking a destination is immensely important, as it gives you a definite goal. It’s a lot easier to mentally get behind “I am going to London” than “I’m going to Europe.” Not only will your trip become more concrete for you and easier to commit to, but it will make planning easier as well.

2. Decide the length of your trip

How much does it cost to travel? You can’t figure out how much you need to save if you haven’t decided on how long you’ll be in your destination. After you decided “I’m going to London,” add “for 10 days.” By doing this you can start planning the details costing.

3. Plan your budget or costs

Your task now is to research the costs in your destination at the style of travel you want. Do you want to backpack or would you rather stay in luxury hotels? How much to spend for hostels, hotels, restaurants and attractions? Knowing these will allow you to estimate how much money you may need for your trip.

4. Start saving money

I personally prefer to write down all my current expenses so i can determine my spending money and how i can cut back. We spend a lot of money every day through small purchases for a bottle of water, the dollar for that snack and that coffee shot at Starbucks. All of that adds up and creating this breakdown can let you know where you need to cut and save. You can start reserving a small amount of money on daily basis.

5. Book your flights, accommodation & check for last minute deals

Okay, you’re inspired, prepared, and on your way to saving money for your trip. So don’t forget to buy that flight or book your accommodation. Check out for some last minutes deals from those travel websites such Booking.com, Agoda.com or Expedia.

6. Plan your activities

Sketch out the main activities you want to do and how much they cost. Make any last-minute adjustments to your savings so you can ensure you have enough money. This will also help you figure out if you need any reservations for your chosen tours or activities. Based from my experience planning is crucial when it comes to control your expenses.

7. Buy your travel insurance

While a lot of people think “I’m healthy, I don’t need travel insurance and I won’t get sick,”. Travel insurance is much more than just medical protection. It covers you when your camera breaks, your flight is canceled, a family member dies and you have to come home, or something is stolen.
Travel insurance is something you will need on the road. You never know what might happen, and most health plans won’t cover you overseas.
Hope this will help you to start planning for your next trip.

5 Free Things To Do In KL

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Sometimes the hardest part about travelling to some of us is the cost. I share with you some guide to these free things to do in Kuala Lumpur so that you don’t have to worry about budgeting.

Walk in the Park
Bless with the tropical weather, Kuala Lumpur offer you nice green park all year round. Enjoy greenery and fresh air in the middle of the urban jungle at some of the city’s large green lung parks. Both park you can reach by the MRT/LRT.
If you prefer slightly further from the hustle and bustle of the city, check out Perdana Botanical Gardens it was once known as Lake Garden, where you can cycle or jog around the pretty fountain lake. While KLCC Park located at Petronas Towers.
The view at Perdana Botanical Garden
Perdana Botanical Gardens, Jalan Kebun Bunga, Tasik Perdana, Kuala Lumpur
KLCC Park, Jalan Ampang, City Centre, Kuala Lumpur
Walking Tours
Slip on some comfortable shoes and take in Kuala Lumpur’s essential sights on foot. Potential trails include the historical Merdeka Square; Kampung Baru, a green Malay village within the metropolis; and Brickfields, KL’s vibrant Indian district. Free walking tours are available for each of these parts of the city (usually run by KL City Hall). Feel free to tip your guide.
Visit Religious Sites
Malaysia is unique culturally in two ways – it is home to three of Asia’s most elaborate cultures (i.e. the Malay, Chinese and Indian cultures) and most of the world’s major religions, all coexisting together in harmony. There are plenty of religious site that you can visit. So take your time to choose.
Jamek Mosque, Kuala Lumpur
Situated at the confluence of the Klang and Gombak Rivers in the very heart of Kuala Lumpur, Jamek Mosque is undoubtedly one of the oldest mosques in the Malaysian capital. Construction of the mosque began in the early 1900s and was completed in 1907, being commissioned by the British colonial government as part of efforts in developing the capital.
The historical Masjid Jamek
Batu Caves, Selangor
Although the limestone caves of Batu Caves have been utilized as shelters by some of the indigenous tribes (Orang Asli) for centuries, the Hindu temple that lies within it did not come into existence until 1890, when K. Thamboosamy Pillay, one of the most prominent figures in the Malayan Tamil community, installed a consecrated statue of Lord Murugan there.
Thean Hou Temple, Kuala Lumpur
The Thean Hou Temple, located atop Robson Hill in the Malaysian capital, is one of the largest Chinese Buddhist temples in Southeast Asia. Originally dedicated to Goddess Tian Hou (Heavenly Mother), worship of Goddess Guan Yin (Goddess of Mercy) and Shui Wei Sheng Niang (Goddess of the Waterfront) is also common in the temple.
Go Hiking
If you are into something challenging than a walk in a park calls out to you, then head to the hiking trails of Bukit Gasing or Bukit Nanas. These natural jungle trails will bring you closer to experiencing the tropical Malaysian rain forest. Go early in the morning because it gets hot later in the day. Also bring lots of bug spray, as mosquitoes thrive here. The best part both of this hiking trails is not far from the city centre.
Hiking trail at Bukit Gasing
Canopy walk at Bukit Nenas or known as KL Eco Park
Bukit Gasing, Petaling Jaya, Selangor
KL Forest Eco Park, Hutan Simpan Bukit Nanas, Jalan Raja Chulan, Kuala Lumpur.
Visit the Free Museums
Stop by to some under rated museums that detail Malaysia’s history. The Royal Malaysian Police Museum will take you on a tour of the local police force, from its beginnings in 1807 to its current incarnation, National Textile Museum and the Bank Negara Malaysia Museum and Art Gallery offers an insight into Malaysia’s financial system, including old Malayan money and educational displays on how money works in the Islamic Shariah system.
Muzium Polis Diraja Malaysia, Jalan Perdana, Tasik Perdana, Kuala Lumpur, +60 3-2272 5689
Bank Negara Malaysia Museum and Art Gallery, Jalan Dato’ Onn, Kuala Lumpur

Hostel vs Hotel : Which one is Best for you?

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What are the biggest differences between hostels and hotels? Unfortunately, it’s a little more complicated than taking away that “s.” There are a few important differences between hostels and hotels to consider when planning your trip. In this posting, i will help you pinpoint key concerns and help you decide which option is best for you.

Hostels vs. Hotels
Here are five factors for you to consider when deciding what kind of lodging is right for your next trip.
1. Privacy
One of the major differences between hostels and hotels is shared rooms. Yes, you are sharing with strangers. This means that you are not only sharing your sleeping space but you are also sharing bathrooms. Having said that, before you write off the hostel option due to privacy concerns, however, check for hostels that offer private rooms and bathrooms. Most of the time they are much cheaper than a normal hotel rates. If privacy is an important part of your trip, a hotel will be a better choice for you. But sharing a room with strangers is not bad at all. After all, your roommates are travellers just like you. They may have helpful tips or entertaining stories to share. If your goal is to meet new people, a hostel will make a great option.
2. Security
Sharing a room with strangers does, of course, come with risks. Some hostels provide safety measures like a lockable cage that slides under your bed, but they don’t always offer locks. If you are travelling with valuables that you want to leave in your room, always pack a sturdy lock. Some hostel do provide safe room or dedicated room to store your valuables.
Most hotels, on the other hand, provide a locked private room and a safe. Some hotels also offer a front-desk safe deposit box for precious items.
3. Price
In general, a room that you have to share will cost less than a private room. But there are more factors that go into pricing accommodations.
A hostel right in the city centre, for instance, might be more expensive than a hotel far from the city centre. Don’t assume that just because it’s a hostel it’s your cheapest option. Always make sure to do your research and explore your options for your particular dates.
4. Amenities
Some of the things you may take for granted in a hotel. Items like iron or hair dryer, are the kinds of things you may have trouble finding in a hostel. You may not have the luxury watching your favourite TV show as you may need to share with other guest. If amenities are important, a hotel will likely be your best bet. But to be fair, nowadays most hostel provide all of these facilities in the common areas it just you need to share with other guest as well. Common areas with shared amenities create a social environment that’s at the heart of the hostel experience.
5. Location
One of the largest differences between hostels and hotels is accessibility. Hostels are abundant in most major cities, particularly throughout Europe, but are less common in smaller towns and off-the-beaten-path locations. However, sites like Hostelworld and Hostels.com make it easier than ever to do a quick check to find out if there’s an affordable and appealing hostel option in your destination.

Best Hostel in Silom, Bangkok

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Whatever plan that you may plan to do in Bangkok whether to check out its incredible street food, tour the city’s countless Buddhist temples, or simply shop until you drop. You may also want somewhere comfortable and affordable to rest your head. There are thousands of choices from budget to 5 star accommodation. In this posting i will share some of my personal preference when it come to pick the best hostels in Bangkok effortlessly combine design, atmosphere and value. The list below are not in order. It is random and you may read and pick for yourself which one you like the most.

One of the most famous hostel in Bangkok is Lub D (which translates as ‘sleep well’) now has two locations in Bangkok. Lub D’s Siam and Silom hostels are close to BTS Skytrain allowing you to hop around the city with ease. While dorms are bigger than some hostels (private rooms are also available), facilities are extensive.
Lub D Silom is located 800m away from BTS Skytrain Chong Nonsi Station. Situated 1 km from Patpong Street and Night Market in the heart of Bangkok, Lub D is near numerous dining, shopping and entertainment options.
All rooms at Lub d are equipped with air conditioning, bathroom amenities and a hairdryer. Lockers and large air-conditioned shared bathrooms are available. Some rooms feature private bathrooms with hot showers and flat-screen TV.
2. C40Winks Hostel
C40Winks Hostel offers air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi. This hostel is nicely design. From dorm to private room all is nicely done. The place is clean and staff arev very warm & friendly. Popular points of interest around the property include Patpong Night Market. Set in the Bang Rak district, the hostel is within 4 km of Siam Paragon & MBK Shopping Mall. This hostel located in between two BTS Skytrain station. Chong Nonsi & Saladaeng.
3. HQ Hostel
Located along the vibrant Silom Road, HQ Hostel offers trendy yet affordable accommodation. It features free wireless internet access in the lobby area, an internet cafe and a sports bar. HQ Hostel feature dormitory rooms that can accommodate different number of guests. The hostel provides free individual lockers and locks. The hostel’s common area has a TV showing sport and movie channels. Books and magazines are available at the library corner. The Cafe serves daily brewed fresh coffee and a free light breakfast for the guest. HQ Hostel is a 5-minute walk away from the Saladaeng & Chong Nonsi BTS Skytrain Station. Located near to famous morning market at Silom Road.
photo credit to 10best.com
4. Good One Hostel & Cafe Bar
Good One Hostel is not only a hostel but a coffee shop and a bar. It’s located in the bustling, attractive and lively neighbourhood. 5 minutes walk to Chong Nnsi BTS Skytrain.
5. Naratel Hostel
Naratel Hostel Bangkok is another good hostel in Silom. Situated, a 7-minute walk from Patpong. It is also 7 minutes walk to Chong Nonsi BTS Skytrain. Offering a shared lounge, the property is located within 3 km of MBK Shopping Mall & Siam Paragon. Free WiFi is available to all guest. The rooms come with a shared bathroom. A continental breakfast is served every morning at the property.
As i mentioned earlier, this is my personal preference. From my experience, i would recommend any of this hostel. If you would like to know more about the hostel or location, feel free to email me at hafiz.mahadzir@gmail.com

What to Do On a Rainy Day in Kuala Lumpur?

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If this is your first time here, Malaysia has frequent rain showers that might affect your plans to do outdoor activities. Don’t worry though as there are plenty of things to do with a roof over your head during the downpours. Sharing with you some of the best activities to do to keep you warm and dry on rainy days in Kuala Lumpur.

Café hopping
The Kuala Lumpur cafe scene is popular among foodies and coffee lovers. Chill out in a cozy cafe when it is raining heavily outside. We recommend for a quick visit to Publika. There is plenty of nice cafe here. From Room 203, Pan & Temper, The Red Bean Bag and a lot more for you to try. Selection for breakfast, lunch & dinner. All in one place.
Shopping for souvenirs
Take time to enjoy some retail therapy, shop for souvenirs which you can take back home for yourselves, friends, and family. The shopping malls we recommend to browse through are Suria KLCC and Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. There is a full air conditioned walkway (takes about 30 minutes) in between these two shopping malls. My next recommendation for you to shop Central Market, a 10 minute walk away from Pasar Seni MRT and LRT station. There are plenty of local handicrafts for you to choose.
Visit art galleries and museums
Explore art, history, and architecture in Kuala Lumpur’s art galleries and museums. You will gain in-depth knowledge about Malaysia’s culture and heritage. Visit eye-opening exhibitions and amazing architecture at MAP @ Publika, Petronas Gallery, National Museum of Malaysia, Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia, and Zhongshan Building.
Get creative
Learn a new skill by creating your very own art pieces. This artworks will be your souvenirs to take home. Take part in batik painting, wood carving, weaving, and other handicrafts activities guided by local professionals at the National Craft Complex. The trip here is worth of your time.
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Watch live music performances
Enjoy your rainy evenings by watching live music performances. Chill out with your friends while listening to local music and enjoying a drink. Listen to cool and funky jazz at No Black Tie. Belt out some classic rock music, contemporary EDM, and sentimental tunes at The Bee in Publika. If you happen to be in town at the right time, live performances are held at annual music & multicultural festivals and popular hotspots in Kuala Lumpur, join in the fun and dance the night away.
Hope this will help you to enjoy your holiday in KL.

Best Mobile Prepaid Plan For Traveller or Tourist in Malaysia

140120celdigirenewProbably one of the first things that we do nowadays as traveller or tourist when arriving at a country is to get a local SIM card, mainly for their data needs. Most of the time it is much cheaper than to use our own roaming feature.

The main operators in Malaysia are Maxis, Celcom, Digi, U Mobile and Tune Talk and as a traveller or tourist, you probably wouldn’t need to look for other operators. 2G and 3G coverage is very good in populated areas in Peninsular Malaysia. 4G coverage tend to be limited to major towns and cities. Coverage in East Malaysia (Sabah and Sarawak) tend to be very patchy outside of city centres. Celcom tend to have better coverage in rural areas of East Malaysia.
Here are some ideas of what i may recommendation:
Celcom
Celcom is the largest provider in Malaysia and offers good 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services on a GSM platform. Its prepaid SIM card is called “Xpax” and can be picked up for free, although prepaid SIM card plans will have to be added before use. Celcom kiosks are dotted around most towns and cities, and also at the airport. Credit can also be purchased at most retailers around Malaysia. All SIM sizes can be purchased, although some will have to be cut down to fit the nano or mini size.
All prepaid SIM cards are sold under the “Xpax” brand name. A good option is the “Xpax Turbo” pack, which costs MYR10 and comes with MYR6 of credit and 200MB of data, valid for 7 days.
The following data packs are also available, listed with their prices and activation codes:
1 day 1GB RM3 *118*2*1#
7 days 2GB RM10 *118*2*2#
30 days 5GB RM30 *118*2*3# or 10GB RM50 *118*2*4#
Dial *118*1*1*2# to check your data balance.
The following data add-ons can also be purchased:
100MB RM3 *118*1*2*4*1# to activate
500MB RM10 *118*1*2*4*2# to activate
1GB RM15 *118*1*2*4*3# to activate
5GBMYR50 *118*1*2*4*4# to activate
The following add-ons can also be added to to increase data usage:
Facebook:

  • 2GB for a day: MYR1 – *118*3*4*1# to activate

  • 20GB for a week: MYR7 –*118*3*4*2# to activate

Nighttime use (1am-7am):

  • 2GB for a day: MYR1 – *118*3*3*1# to activate

  • 20GB for a week: MYR7 – *118*3*3*2# to activate

Celcom’s APN: celcom4g, and website: http://www.celcom.com.my/personal

DiGi

DiGi is the third-largest provider in Malaysia and offers good 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services on a GSM platform. Prepaid SIM cards come only with prepaid SIM card plans. DiGi kiosks are positioned in most towns and cities, and also at the airport. Just like Celcom, credit can also be purchased at most retailers around Malaysia. Credit can be found in several denominations between MYR5 to MYR100. All SIM sizes can be purchased, although some will have to be cut down to accommodate the nano- or mini-sized slot in your phone.
Prepaid SIM card packages come in the following two options:
  • DiGi Prepaid Best: MYR8 which comes with MYR5 credit valid for 30 days and 300MB of data valid for 7 days

  • DiGi Prepaid Live: MYR12 which comes with MYR8 credit and 300MB of data valid for 7 days.

Dial *126# to check your balance.
Dial *200# to check data usage.
The following data packs can also be added by dialing the activation code:
100MB 24 hours RM1 *116*1#
1GB 24 hours RM3 *116*3#
Unlimited 24 hours RM8 *116*3#
300MB 7 days RM4 *116*1#
1.5GB 7 days RM9 *116*1#
5GB 30 days RM28 *116*1#
8GB 30 days RM38 *116*1#
10GB 30 days RM48 *116*1#
All of the above-mentioned packs come with free WhatsApp use and free Internet use on other social media platforms.
There are also several roaming packages available:
  • Roam5/Roam10: MYR5 or 10 per day for unlimited social media and messaging, plus 50MB of data.

  • RoamCombo: MYR15 for 72 hours’ use of 500MB Internet plus 30 voice minutes, or pay MYR25 for 2GB data plus 30 voice minutes, also valid for 72 hours.

  • RoamTelenor: MYR25 for 72 hours’ use of 4GB Internet and 60 voice minutes.

*The list above is the best 2 telco from my experience. Do share with me if you have some other input as well.

5 Kedai Kek Terbaik di KL

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Bila bab kek ni, keterujaan Hafiz lain macam sikit. Tak tau nak start kat mana menulis. Hafiz senaraikan 5 kedai kek yang terbaik di KL. Bagi Hafiz, kek yang sedap itu mestilah menggunakan bahan-bahan yang berkualiti. Penggunaan butter yang berkualiti sememangnya akan mempengaruhi rasa & texture kek.

1. Jaslyn Cakes
Pilihan no 1 Hafiz. Sejak Jaslyn Cakes ni dibuka few years back, ni lah destinasi pilihan untuk makan kek. Kalau korang nak tahu apa yg istimewa tentang Jaslyn Cakes ni, kek yang disediakan disini menggunakan telur ayam kampung, tepung organic dan tiada artificial products. Dan pastinya lah Jaslyn gunakan butter yang berkualiti. Pilihan Hafiz di Jaslyn ni ialah Victoria Sandwich & Red Velvet Cake.
Lokasi : 7A, Jalan Telawi 2, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur Phone: 03-2202 2868
2. Dew Bangsar
Dimiliki oleh founder Jaslyn Cakes jugak. Baru dibuka sekitar awal 2018. Konsep Dew ni sedikit berbeza dgn Jaslyn. Bukanlah seperti kek yang biasa kita makan. Yes, i am big fan for Jaslyn(ni bukan review berbayar tau..heheh). Pilihan Hafiz di DEW Bangsar ialah Chocolate Cakes, Banana Dulcey, Kopiko Tart & Rosewater Grapefruit.
Lokasi : 7A, Jalan Telawi 2, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur
Phone: 03-2202 2868
3. Tray Cafe
Dikenali ramai sebab brunch kat sini sangat best sampai kadang terleoas pandang nak order kek kat sini. Ada pelbagai pilihan yang korang boleh pilih kat Tray Cafe ni. Pilihan Hafiz disini ialah Black Forest Pavlova & Nutella Chocolate Cakes. Kalau ada kesempatan boleh jugak order scones kat sini. Memang terbaik
Lokasi : H-0-2 Block H, Plaza Damas, 60 Jalan Sri Hartamas 1, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
4. A Slice of Heaven(Just Heavenly)
Seperti nama kedai ni sendiri, rasa kek kat sini memang terbaik. Selepas beberapa tahun, Just Heavenly ni masih sedap seperti dulu. Pilihan Hafiz pastinya Chocolate Durian, tapi macam dah tak jual sekarang. Pilihan yang lain pastinya Red Velvet Cake & Carrot Cake.
Lokasi : Bangsar Shopping Centre, KL
5. Alexis Bistro
Ni yang paling classic. Memang all time favorite. Pavlova kat Alexis ni memang terbaik. Quality consistent. Dan yang paling best boleh makan kek sampai lewat malam. Kedai-kedai yang Hafiz senaraikan kat atas tutup awal. Jadi kalau tetiba kul 10 malam tekak terasa nak makan kek, boleh lah pergi Alexis.
Lokasi : 29 Jalan Telawi 3, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur Phone: +60 032 284-2880
Ok lepas ni bolehlah korang cuba ok. Tapi harus di ingat ini cuma pendapat peribadi Hafiz. Selamat mencuba 🙂