These days, the best way to travel from Georgetown Penang, to Kuala Lumpur is on the fast KTMB ETS train from Butterworth Penang to Kuala Lumpur KL Sentral Railway Station.
These new Electric Trains are much faster than the old diesel Intercity services, with the duration of the train journey from Butterworth to KL averaging around 4 and a half hours.
The older Diesel trains are now all cancelled and the Electric Train Services are now the only ones running on this route.
New ETS timetable valid until the 29th of February 2020 (jadual ets dari Butterworth ke KL Sentral):
All trains depart daily:
EG 9121 (ETS Gold) Departs Butterworth at 05:15 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 09:34.
EP 9103 (ETS Platinum) Departs Butterworth at 06:05 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 10:26.
EG 9321 (ETS Gold) Departs Butterworth at 07:30 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 11:54.
*EP 9105 (ETS Platinum) Departs Butterworth at 13:10 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 17:27.
*Replaced with the new ETS2 train EP 9173 from the 1st of December 2019 with a new Business Class carriage. Departs Butterworth at 13:10 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 17:30.
EP 9107 (ETS Platinum) Departs Butterworth at 16:00 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 20:17.
EG 9123 (ETS Gold) Departs Butterworth at 18:33 - Arrives at KL Sentral at 22:59.
The above rail trips to KL have a varying amount of stops along the way, with the Platinum services stopping just a few times, while the Gold services stop more frequently.
If you want to travel from Penang to KUL Airport by train, you can easily connect to one of the many airport train services that leave from KL Sentral to both airport terminals a KUL.
The KLIA Ekspres train is a non-stop service and takes only 28 minutes to get to KUL International Airport, then another 5 minutes to the KLIA2.
Trains depart KL Sentral 3 to 4 times an hour, with the first KLIA Ekspres at 05:00, the last at 00:40.
For further information, latest schedules and fares, please see their official website at:
There is also a slightly slower KLIA Transit train that operates on the same ERL railway line that stops at all stations to the airport.
Another much slower, but much cheaper option to travel from KL Sentral to KUL, is to take a bus from the lower level of the station - just follow the signs.
For more information on KL Sentral and all the travel options around the city by bus, KTM Komuter train, LRT or monorail please see:
How much is the train from Penang to Kuala Lumpur?
Fares for the ETS to KL from Butterworth vary only on the type of train you take :
ETS Gold Services cost: Adult: 59RM - Children: 34RM
ETS Platinum Services which have fewer stops cost: Adult: 79RM - Children: 44RM
There are no separate classes on any of these trains (ie no 3rd, 2nd or 1st class).
In George Town, if you want to buy your ETS tickets you can visit the KTM office at the Jetty so there is no need to go over to Butterworth Station.
Advance tickets can be purchased from just a couple of weeks to a couple of months in advance (booking times for KTM tickets can vary quite considerably throughout the year as they often change timetables and delay the release of seats).
Alternatively, you can book ETS tickets from Penang to KL online, either directly from the KTMB website or by using an online ticket agent.
You will find booking through an agent much simpler than using KTM and the price is the same.
However, you may have to pay a booking fee if using an agent