Esso Fuel Station at the Gelang Patah R&R, Johor.
Proceed to Hatyai via the Malaysian North-South Highway all the way through Bukit Kayu Hitam.
With as little fuel as possible, proceed across the Tuas 2nd Link, paying the appropriate tolls (Toll coupon S$0.50 for Singapore end & RM1.00 for the Malaysian end), into Gelang Patah and head for the Esso Station at the Gelang Patah R&R along the highway, 2 km from the customs checkpoint. Fuel top up will cost about RM1.10 per litre, unleaded.
Hit north on the North-South Highway towards Malacca/Kulua Lumpur. Keep an eye out for its directional signs.
Stop at Pagoh R&R along the highway for fuel stop and coffee break (fuel about RM15.00).
Proceed north on the highway again towards Kuala Lumpur and turn off before K.L. into the KLIA highway. Look out for the KLIA / Ipoh directional signs after passing the Nilai exit.
Arrive at Denkil R&R along the highway for lunch and fuel top up (fuel about RM15.00).
Head down the highway again keeping an eye out for Ipoh directional signs. Head in that direction. Stop at Tapah R&R for tea and fuel top up along the highway (fuel about RM15.00).
Proceed after the break and head north again until the G. Semanggul R&R before Penang State along the highway for a break and another fuel top up (fuel about RM15.00).
Get back on the highway and head north once again. This will be the last stretch before arriving at Bukit Kayu Hitam and the Thai border. The last fuel stop in Malaysia will be at the Changlun Petronas Fuel Station. There will be no other fuel stations in the 30 km between here and the Thai border. Topping up here will get you to Hatyai. Fuel cost will be about RM15.00.
Prepare your passport, Malaysian immigration papers and a Certified True Copy of your bike's Log Card or Book. Go through immigration and customs and stop at the border police checkpoint. Here the Malaysian authorities will want to inspect your passport and true copy log card or book. Smile and talk sweet. Being polite can sometimes make things easier here:) Prepare another copy of your log card because they may want to keep one copy here sometimes.
Once through the Malaysian end, head up into the Thailand end. The Thai border will be opened everyday betweeen 6am and 6pm, Thai time. Go before or after that period and you'll be sent back. Park your bike and be prepared for about 30 minutes to an hour of paperwork and queueing.
Firstly, fill up the immigration form obtainable from the immigration officer booth. Get a few extra copies for next time. Fill up this form and clear your passport with the immigration officer, making sure he or she stamps it.
Next move over to the customs counter just next to the immigration booth and give the lady there your passport and true copy of the log card or book. She will key the necessary information into their computer system and you will be given an Import Certificate for your bike.
With this certificate, queue at the insurance company booth, near the immigration counter, to buy 3rd party coverage for 2 weeks (minimum period). This is required by the customs authority and it will cost about 200 bahts.
With this policy, trot over to the customs booth. The officers here are in smart white uniforms (looks Navy to me). Hand them the insurance cover note, the true copy of your log card or book and the Import Certificate. They will record the necessary information and prepare a Customs Note for you. This note has to be handed over to the customs inspection station about 2 km away from the border.
Thats it! Gear up and get ready for Thailand! The road to Hatyai will be through several towns with heavy traffic and lots of local folks. Ride with care and mind the way the locals drive. There is a speed limit so look out for the white signs with strange black characters and large digits indicating the allowed speed.
Along the road in the border town of Sadao, you will be directed by road barriers to turn into the customs inspection station. Here surrender the customs import note to the officer there and ride on.
Follow the Hatyai directional signs for about 60 km. There are no major turns until Hatyai. Just head north and straight ahead along the highway.
After about 55 km into Thailand, look out for a large "Marko" sign on the right side of the road just after going over a bridge across a large river. Turn left at the next junction. Welcome to Hatyai!
Once again mind the heavy traffic and pedestrians. Lee Garden Plaza Hotel is just 3 km into Hatyai from this left turn. Look out for the tallest building somewhere just to the left of the road you are on. You can't miss it. But if the impossible happens and you're lost, hail one of the many tuk-tuk (taxis) there and ask them to lead you to the hotel. This ought to cost you about 30 bahts.
At the hotel, proceed to the basement carpark from the rear of the hotel and rest your machine. Check in and enjoy the programs of the Charity Ride as it unfolds. Total time taken to get to Hatyai from Gelang Patah would be about 10 hours at a comfortable pace. Remember to adjust your time an hour back to the local time. ie. 5pm (Singapore time) will be 4pm (Thai time). The nights start early here!
Day 2 & 3
There is so much to see, eat and buy in Hatyai. Do all this in abundance but within the realm of reality. In short...have fun!!
Festivities end on the 4th day and if you're not heading up north for more fun, here are the details for your ride back.
Check out of the hotel, check your machine, especially the tyres for nails and gear up for the ride back after repairing the tyres if nails are found lodged in it. Proceed east out of town until you hit the highway heading for the border. Look out for Sadao directional signs and follow them.
60 km away at the border, prepare your passport and the Import Certificate. Bring all this to the immigration counter and get your passport cleared and stamped for departure. Next move over to the customs counter and hand in the Import Certificate to the customs officer there. If you do not hand this Certificate over, the rider of your bike will get a 2000 baht fine the next time it is imported into Thailand. Sign on their record book and you're ready to go.
Fill up the Malaysian immigration and money declaration forms for entry into Malaysia again. Head into the checkpoint through the motorcycle lane and clear it.
Head to the nearest petrol station along the highway in Bukit Kayu Hitam which happens to be a BP Fuel Station not more then 1 km away from the border. Top up fuel (fuel cost about RM15.00 depending on your consumption in Hatyai).
Head south getting back onto the North-South Highway until you cross the Penang state line. Stop at the Juru R&R along the highway for fuel top up and tea. Fuel should cost about RM15.00.
Get back onto the highway and head south again until arriving at Tapah R&R along the highway about 60 km after Ipoh. Stop here for fuel and lunch. Fuel should cost about RM15.00.
Well rested and burping, get back on the highway and head south. Turn off into the KLIA highway just after the Sungei Buloh R&R to avoid K.L. again. Proceed along this highway following Seramban/Johor Bahru directional signs. Stop at Denkil R&R again for another fuel stop. Fuel here will also cost about RM15.00.
Proceed south towards Malacca on the North-South Highway. Stop at Pagoh R&R along the highway about 70 km after Malacca. Top up fuel and have dinner here. You are now less then 150 km away from Singapore.
After dinner, head south again and turn off into the "Singapore" exit after the Kulai Interchange along the highway. Proceed along the highway until you arrive at the Gelang Patah R&R just before the 2nd Link checkpoint. This is where we top up our tanks with cheap petrol for the last time until we ride into Malaysia again! Prepare RM1.00 for the Malaysian toll and a S$0.50 toll coupon is needed for the Singapore end. At this point get your fellow bikers contact numbers if you have not already done so and proceed across the causeway back to reality and remember, ride safe and live to ride another day :)
Please note that all fuel costs mention above are based on the consumption of a well maintained Honda CB400 Super 4 Version S, doing an average speed of about 160km/h. Fuel consumption will vary from bike to bike and is dependant on riding styles, machine performance and condition as well.