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Back to Borneo


View 2017 Good Friday Crucifixion in the Philippines on alexchan's travel map.

large_5550_14929571108327.jpgKota Kinabalu does not have significant historic buildings due to fires and also WWII.
I woke before the alarm at 0530 and hopped to check-out. I told the frontdesk to hold off entering my departure into her system so I could continue to use the wifi to order a Uber cab. Unfortunately there was already a small surge pricing at 0600; it would be more expensive than an honest taxi driver but it’s still better than risking a street taxi as I had enough money leftover for just an honest fare.

The driver went around a couple of times as he didn’t see me. I finally boarded and we set off for the airport with a short stop for petrol. His tank was genuinely empty and he put in PHP300 which was about NZD10 only. It just shows that people are quite poor here.

At Terminal 3, there were queues at every entrance. The furthest entrance had the longest queue and I got in pretty quickly.large_5550_14929570711085.jpgKota Kinabalu is a city by the sea. View of the sea from a city food hall.The AirAsia queue wasn’t long but it was painfully slow, as were the kiosks which weren’t compulsory here.

Fortunately passport and security were swift and I made it to the lounge 1h30 prior to departure for breakfast and to refill my water bottles. The flight boarded 40 mins prior and they tried to finalise the flight about 30 minutes prior. Despite the stragglers, we closed up and pushed back 15 mins ahead of schedule bound for Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia ... Land below the Wind (because it is just below the typhoon belt).

A dad on board needed to toilet his little girl during pushback. The crew allowed him to go but had tl delay the safety demo until he was out of the toilet. Recently, airlines in the US have had bad press for being very hard and unreasonable with passengers.large_5550_14929570779721.jpgWaterfront living nearing completion.Just shows that common sense still exists in this part of the world.

The flight took 1h40 on an older A320 with CFM engines which is the norm in the AirAsia group. The plane appears to have served time in Malaysia judging from some of the signage. It appears Philippines AirAsia had a mixed older fleet unlike the other airlines in the AirAsia group.

Before landing, the crew lined up and thanked us for our patronage, put their hands in prayer position and bowed. They did this yesterday too but I don’t recall this happening on my first flight in the Philippines. Their Indonesian counterpart do this too but Malaysians are probably too proud to do this :-)

At Kota Kinabalu, the taxi to town was MYR30 whereas Uber was less than MYR10. Wow! What a difference as in the Philippines, both are about comparable and I found that in Peru, Uber was actually more expensive.

I checked into the Hotel Capital for a 2 night stay. While in a familiar city, there’s little pressure to do anything. I wandered around the Suria Mall for a late lunch, skipped dinner (had muesli, fruit and yoghurt) before being called up by my old school friend David to go out for a cuppa tea and share a little of his supper (dumplings and kaya toast).

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Posted by alexchan 17:00 Archived in Malaysia

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