There is a land border crossing between Malaysia and Thailand at Padang Besar. But how to cross the border at Padang Besar by train?

That is the question that many people asked. For first time backpackers or travellers trying to do overland border crossing at Padang Besar, this is the most important question that they will ask. There are several land border crossings between Malaysia and Thailand. However, for this post, we will tell you step by step on how to cross the border at Padang Besar by train.

How to cross the border at Padang Besar by train
Read further for step by step guides on how to cross the border at Padang Besar by train.

Step One: Buy a train ticket!

Of course, if you want to cross the border at Padang Besar by train, you will need to have a train ticket first. Without a train ticket, your other options would be to hire the white minivans outside the Padang Besar train station or to take a taxi. But then, you will miss the chance to experience how to cross the border at Padang Besar by train.

Since crossing the border by train means you will have to take a connecting train operated by the State Railway of Thailand, the timing of your ticket plays a crucial part. There are two trains from Padang Besar to Hat Yai Junction station daily.

The morning train will depart at 9.55 am (Malaysia time) while the second train will depart at 4.40 pm (Malaysia time). So, if you plan to cross the border at Padang Besar by train in the afternoon, it is advisable to take the 8.30 am ETS train from KL Sentral. By doing so, you will reach Padang Besar at around 2.00 pm and you will have ample time for Immigration clearance and other things.

How to cross the border at Padang Besar by train: Step Two

Once you reached Padang Besar, you can get the ticket for Padang Besar – Hatyai shuttle train, operated by State Railway of Thailand. To do so, you have to go to the Station Manager Room on Platform 1. There will be a small window there for you to purchase the shuttle train ticket.

Buy your ticket to cross the border at Padang Besar by train here
You can buy the shuttle train ticket at this office.

The ticket for Padang Besar – Hat Yai shuttle train is THB 50 per passenger (free for kids below two years old). If you do not have any Thai Baht yet, you can pay in Malaysian Ringgit where the cost will be RM 8.

The shuttle train ticket to cross the border at Padang Besar by train
The shuttle train ticket to cross the border at Padang Besar by train. The timing stated is Thailand’s time.

Step Three: Clear Immigration

The last time I used this border crossing, it was back in 2011. Since 9 years have passed, I totally forgot how it was done back then, except that both countries share the same building for immigration clearance. So, during our recent trip to Hua Hin by train, I got confused. However, since we have done it successfully during this trip, let us share with you how to clear immigration at Padang Besar.

Wait here for the immigration counter to open
Waiting area.

First, you will have to wait at the waiting area, either inside the building or at the platform. Since the train to Hat Yai will only depart at 4.40 pm, no immigration officers from either country will man the counters. At around 3.30 pm, immigration counters will open.

So, you have to queue at the Malaysia immigration counters to get your passport stamped. After that, walk to the Thailand’s side for the entry stamp. Both countries’ counters utilize the same building, it is just a short walk away.

Final step to cross the border at Padang Besar by train

Enter the train
Since the platform is designed for Malaysian’s trains, there is a huge gap between the platform and the train doors. Mind your gap.
The train
The train used to cross the border at Padang Besar by train

Finally, after you have cleared the Thai’s immigration, just walk over to the train. The train will then make an hour journey to Hat Yai on a very classic train – the Bogie Third Class trains. The very train that I rode on during my first backpacking trip to Thailand.

Interior of the train to cross the border at Padang Besar by train.
The interior of the shuttle train.
Zinnirah loves it
Zinnirah loves the adventure!

As soon as you reach Hat Yai, sawadeekap, welcome to Thailand! You can now proceed with your next plan since you have already cleared immigration at Padang Besar.

Welcome to Thailand!

We hope that this post will help you in your journey to cross the border at Padang Besar by train!

Extra info after crossing the border at Padang Besar by train

After you have reached Hat Yai Junction from Padang Besar, if you are hungry, there is a restaurant in the station called Maii Mhorn Restaurant. It is halal, served good food and some of the staff can speak in Malay. So, if you are extremely hungry, you can eat at the restaurant before proceeding with your journey!

Maii Mhorn restaurant
Maii Mhorn restaurant
Fried rice.
Delicious fried rice.

+++++

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Author

We are Khai and Amira, Malaysian travel bloggers behind Kaki Jalans. Our travels have taken us to almost all the countries in Asean and several countries in Europe. We are still actively travelling and adding to this list.

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