For most travelers, Kuala Lumpur International Airport becomes the most fantastic point to jump into other Asian countries. Of course, the existence of Air Asia’s Low Cost Carrier (LCC) makes it so. Since 2001, Air Asia has been providing travelers with low-cost access to travel around Asia. Thanks to Air Asia, I have stopped at KLIA for 21 times when exploring Asia.
But in this story. it was eighth stopover….Yup, this was the eighth time I set foot in Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
After ten o’clock at night, the giant wheel of Air Asia D7 505 gently touched against KLIA2’s runway. The 5 hour 50 minute journey from Seoul was over. My first impression of tasting the wide body Airbus A330 was really pleasant. Flying across Yellow Sea and East China Sea took place with virtually non-existent turbulence, calm and smooth without a hitch. That was probably one of the advantages of riding a large plane when exploring sky.
After taxiing for a few minutes, Air Asia D7 505 was stopped in apron and as soon as the plane door opened, I entered KLIA2 building via aerobridge. I returned to KLIA2 after ten days before stopping by at it before jump to Kaohsiung, Taiwan. It was such a happy feeling that night because I was already close to home, only 2 hours 15 minutes away by air.
And for me, stopping at KLIA2 would be more convenient if I left immigration counter, because I could find many culinary offerings at Gateway@klia2 mall instead of just sitting in transfer hall.
“Transit, Sir. I want to find food for dinner”, I lightly greeted an immigration officer in front.
“Where are you going?”, he asked while checking my green passport.
“From Seoul, want to go back to Jakarta, Sir”
“Oh…”, He briefly answered and then ordered me to face the camera and do fingerprints. By midnight that night, actually my stomach was already filled with wind because the dinner schedule had long passed. But to complete the schedule, I chose to hasten my steps towards a restaurant. It was NZ Curry House which was an Indian restaurant located at Transportation Hub level 1 Gateway@klia2 mall.
(On my last visit at KLIA2 at the end 2019 when I was about to fly to Kochi-India, this restaurant area was undergoing renovations, either closed or just being repaired).
The mainstay menu which I often order when I stopped at this restaurant was “Nasi Lemak” with boiled eggs and a cup of hot O tea. For that menu, I usually only spend 6.5 Ringgit.
While tasting spoon by spoon of Nasi Lemak, I understood that after that I would only spend the night on the 1st floor while waiting for tomorrow to arrive. Therefore, I wasn’t in a hurry to eat my simple dish.
After eating, I took the time to change into a t-shirt in the toilet near restaurant and then went up for a while to level 2 to look for souvenirs at Jaya Grocer. For me, KLIA2 was also a favorite place to look for souvenirs if I didn’t have time to stop by in downtown, the halalness of Malaysian products, which were 61% of its citizen was Muslim, was a guarantee in itself. My main shopping target was the packaging of “Teh Tarik Aik Cheong” so I could enjoy it in my working days in my homeland’s capital. A package of Teh Tarik Aik Cheong contained 15 sachets I redeemed for 13 Ringgit that night.
After I got souvenirs, I immediately looked for a spot to lay down in 1st floor because that time had touched the dawn and my eyes had also turned red as if asking me to immediately close them.
Shortly after choosing, there were rows of empty seat in 1st floor in a corner of hall. After acquiring it, I felt half asleep on it until dawn.
However, I deserved to be grateful for KLIA2’s presence in my long history of traveling around Asia.