Last Updated: 2020-06-08
To get from Langkawi to Penang, you have a number of travel options available, so depending on your budget, you can choose to take a direct flight, a direct ferry to Georgetown or take a shorter boat trip to the mainland and continue by bus or train.
The cost of the journey will depend on which way you choose.
Below are the options from the most expensive to the cheapest way to travel:
1) Take a direct flight from LGK to PEN.
2) Take a direct ferry from Langkawi to Georgetown on Penang Island.
3) Take a much shorter ferry to the mainland, then continue your journey by either bus or train to Butterworth.
Travelling this way works out at around half the price than taking the direct ferry, so if you want to save money and don't mind a bit of a longer journey, this is the best way to go.
The direct ferry leaves Kuah jetty just twice a day and usually takes two and a half to three hours to make the trip to Penang Island.
The duration of the ferry journey to Penang from Langkawi can sometimes depend on the weather - when its is rough it can take quite a bit longer.
If you are travelling on a budget and don't mind a much longer journey, you can get to Penang for half the price of the direct ferry if you take the following routes:
This journey involves taking the much shorter ferry ride to the mainland, to Kuala Kedah Jetty.
Once you arrive at K. Kedah, you can then take a local bus to Alor Setar city centre from the main road in front of the ferry terminal (or taxi for about 15 - 20 RM if you want to get there quickly or there are a few of you to share the cost).
Ask the bus driver to let you off at the nearest stop to the Alor Setar Train Station.
Then it's a 5 to 10 minute walk to the train station.
Cheap KTM Komuter (commuter) trains leave Alor Setar for Butterworth every one or two hours apart, starting in the early morning and running until late in the evening.
From Butterworth train station, you then take the short ferry ride over to Georgetown on Penang Island.
Further reading for this route:
Another option is to take the boat to Kuala Perlis, then take a bus from the nearby bus station to Butterworth bus station.
This is the shortest ferry journey to the mainland (one hour and 15 minutes) so if you don't like long boat trips this is a good route to take.
This way works our slightly more expensive than going via K. Kedah and the Kuala Perlis to Butterworth / Penang bus is not that frequent and often fully booked.
Another option is to take a taxi or bus from Kuala Perlis jetty to Arau railway station.
From Arau you can take one of the regular and cheap KTM Komuter trains to Butterworth.
If you decide to take the bus to Arau Train Station, this involves taking a "MyBas" bus from Kuala Perlis Bus Terminal to Kangar Bus Terminal.
At Kangar, you will have to change to another MyBas bus to Arau.
For more information about the buses to Arau:
The quickest way to get to Penang from Langkawi is to take a 40-minute flight from Langkawi Airport to Penang Airport.
If you plan ahead and book in advance, you can often find some good value seats on these planes.
Once you arrive at Penang International Airport, you can choose to take a taxi or RapidPenang bus into Georgetown or anywhere else on the island.
If you have taken your car over to Langkawi Island, you will have to go back to the mainland the same way you came, via the Kuala Perlis car ferry.
Once you arrive in K. Perlis, the best way to travel by road is to head straight for the E1 North-South Highway, then drive all the way to Butterworth.
At Butterworth, you can then decide to take the ferry to Georgetown or go via the first Penang Bridge.