A. Book your resort and ferry ticket as far as possible in advance, especially when travelling over weekends, public holidays and Singaporean and Malaysian school holidays. You'll find that these are extremely busy periods. Given the record-breaking sales at recent holiday fairs and 2020 will be no exception.
B. Parking at the designated area outside Mersing Harbour Centre costs up to RM 18 per night. The car park is fenced off and secure, but tends to be full during weekends and holidays. That said, come and see us at ferry ticket collection counter number 1, because chances are we can get your car parked.
C. The only vaccination requirements For West Malaysia are yellow fever for infected areas. Cholera, smallpox and malaria have largely been eliminated. That said, if you're going jungle trekking in remote areas, then it makes sense to bring malaria pills.
D. There are several rather good food stalls near the departure jetty in Mersing. By all means try the dishes offered there, because they're well worth it. By the way, Tioman souvenirs of all shapes, types and sizes can be bought in the area behind these food stalls.
E. Visitors to Malaysia are advised that the trafficking of drugs, including marijuana, is punishable by the death penalty.
F. Before your departure to Tioman, you'll be asked to pay 30 Ringgit conservation fee by the authorities. Please note that these funds collected go towards maintaining the Tioman marine environment, the flora and fauna. You'll be issued a receipt in return.
G. Local calls can be made from public phones using coins or pre-paid cards. International calls can be made from public phones with card phone facilities or at any Telekom offices or Internet cafes using Skype.
H. The actual ferry departure times can't always be exactly adhered to. In more cases than not, this is due to the tides, i.e. the water depth around the mouth of the Mersing River and in particular the channel the ferry follows out to sea and back. Just take these occasional delays in your stride, as they really cannot be helped.
I. Visitors to Malaysia who wish to drive need an international driving licence. Driving is on the left-hand side of the road. Please note that it's advisable to observe the speed limits, 50km/h in the city or residential areas and 80km/h and 110km/h on the highway and expressway, respectively.
J. Bring an extra t-shirt or sweater with you on the ferry, because sometimes the air-con setting is quite high, rendering the ferry cabin a bit chilly.
K. Local food tends to be quite spicy. If you cannot bear spicy food, inform the service staff, so the food can be prepared using less chili.
L. Please make sure you know at which "kampong" your resort is located and remember the name of your kampong. Kampong means village in Malay and it's these villages that are announced when you reach Tioman.
This is the usual order of the stops on your way to Tioman:
1. Kampong Genting
2. Kampong Paya (Don't mistake "Paya" for "Berjaya", which is in Tekek)
3. Kampong Tekek
4. Kampong Air Batang (Also known as "ABC")
x. Panuba Jetty (If there are guests staying here)
5. Kampong Salang
Simply reverse the order on your way back to Mersing. (Please note that during the Northeast monsoon, the route taken may be adjusted. By all means ask the crew if you're not sure where to disembark.)
By the way, if you're going to Kampong Mukut or Nipah, please inform the ferry crew in advance, so they can inform you accordingly, because these kampongs are generally not on the usual destination list.
M. Visitors to Malaysia must be in possession of a valid passport or travel document with a minimum validity of six months beyond the intended visiting period. Most visitors do not require visas for social or business visits. However, citizens from North Korea, Cuba, Vietnam and the People's Republic of China are required to have a visa to visit Malaysia.
N. Tapwater is safe to drink in Malaysia, but it's best boiled first.
O. Apart from the December to February monsoon months, most of our sea crossings tend to be fairly smooth. If, however, you tend to get seasick, you can try motion sickness medication, such as Dramamine, available from your local pharmacy. Another way to combat that queasy feeling in your stomach is by using a motion sickness patch. These slow-release patches are stuck behind the ear, where, according to users, they cause less drowsiness than oral medication. Sucking on a sweet lemon candy also does the trick for some. Lastly, if all else fails, please note that the ferry carries seasickness bags. They're black and can be found hanging from the ferry wall, usually near the front of the cabin.
P. Do you have a tip or a suggestion? Email us.