Reader’s mailbag: An email from Deric on Kinabalu

I received an email this morning from one of our readers who would like to know more about the mountain guide fee for his climb. Deric sent his email with an attachment from SSL website’s information on the guide fees. My comments & answers will be in purple.

Hi, I’m Deric from Penang.
Actually I have tight budge.. so thinking of save as much as possible.
I would like to get some advice from u.

I plan to book Airasia ticket round trip which cost RM200 and Tune Hotels in Kota Kinabalu for 3 nights for RM90 in this September.
While staying in Tune Hotel in Kota Kinabalu may save you some cost for accommodation, the distance from Tune Hotel to the city center may cost you some money. For your information, Tune Hotel is about 12km away to the outskirt of Kota Kinabalu. So, you may have to take a bus (in which, they may provide) to get to the city center for your sightseeing. 1Borneo, a new & modern shopping complex which is adjacent to Tune Hotel is also not that cheap.

And for sure, I plan to have Kinabalu mountain climbing. But I would like to know about how much I have to pay 🙂

I visited and find out the price list.

As show below:
2. Mountain Guide Fees
Timpohon Gate / Peak / Timpohon Gate
1-3 Climbers – RM70.00 per trip
4-6 Climbers – RM74.00 per trip
7-8 Climbers – RM80.00 per trip
Timpohon / Peak / Mesilau Trail
* Starting and ending at different point
1-3 Climbers – RM80.00 per trip
4-6 Climbers – RM86.00 per trip
7-8 Climbers – RM92.00 per trip
Mesilau Trail / Peak / Mesilau Trail
1-3 Climbers – RM84.00 per trip
4-6 Climbers – RM90.00 per trip
7-8 Climbers – RM100.00 per trip

What are differences within these 3 packages?
As it stated there, you will start and end at different places, according to the packages. Most first time climbers will take the Timpohon / Peak / Timpohon, in which the shorter trail compared to Mesilau / Peak / Mesilau. The price for each package is also tailored to their respective distance; the shorter the distance, the cheaper it is.

Do I need to sum it up to make me reach the summit?
No. But it will be cheaper for you if you climb in a group. Bigger group will save some more.

I calculated other payment as listed in website and it costs RM50.
Is there any other hidden charge that I need to know?

All the charges will usually be stated in SSL website, and you have to contact them directly to get the information. However, the other additional costs would be the climbing permit, entrance fee, insurance, transport (from Kinabalu Park to Timpohon Gate), certificate and porter (optional).

Perhaps if u know what is usual cost to if want to reach the summit?
I used to pay less than RM250 couple of years back, but with SSL’s new systems, you need to pay more than RM500, I think…

Pls share with me…..

Thanks a lot!!!!

Anymore suggestion of answers?

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About drizad

A self employed General Practitioner who lives with his lovely family in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. He dedicates his spare time serving people with precious information on climbing the Majestic Mountain of the Borneo, Mt Kinabalu. Reachable at drizad(at)

3 thoughts on “Reader’s mailbag: An email from Deric on Kinabalu

  1. Cheng

    To add another query:

    To trek Mt. K., what are the 2 items I MUST book/reserve in advance? Accomodation at Laban Rata and Climb Permit? Does a confirmed reservation at Laban Rata = confirmed Climb Permit?

  2. Cheng


    Thank you for the advise.

    Just received an email from SSL. Their beds are full (Laban Rata 1) for Mar 21st.

    No choice but to book through a tour operator.

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