Frequent travellers to Johor Bahru (JB) would know that the Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) shuttle train is a good alternative to travel across the border.
A trip from Woodlands to JB costs S$5, which is an affordable solution to beat the Causeway jam.
For Malaysians, taking the KTM train will soon be even cheaper as Malaysia will streamline the one-way fare to just RM5 (S$1.44).
However, only Malaysian citizens will be eligible for this flat rate.
The good news was announced by Malaysian Transport Minister Anthony Loke on Sunday (10 Dec), reported The Star.
He noted that it currently costs S$5 to travel via train from Singapore to JB, but only RM5 (S$1.44) in the opposite direction.
KTM had proposed to eliminate this fare difference by charging Malaysians a flat one-way fare of RM5, the minister said.
Mr Loke welcomed the suggestion, he said, noting that 10,000 passengers use the KTM train, also known as Shuttle Tebrau, every day.
He promised to discuss the matter with Malaysia’s Land Public Transport Agency, hoping to implement the flat fare in early 2024.
As for what Singapore would think of it, Mr Loke said there was no need to discuss this with Singapore.
That’s because KTM is a Malaysian entity, he added.
The Shuttle Tebrau’s days might be numbered, though.
That’s because the new Singapore-Johor Bahru Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link is on track to open at the end of 2026.
As agreed between Singapore and Malaysia, the Shuttle Tebrau will cease operations within six months after the RTS Link opens for passenger service.
On 26 Oct, Mr Loke told Parliament that Malaysia will hold discussions with Singapore over keeping the Shuttle Tebrau service after the RTS Link opens.
On Sunday, he told the media that there’s still time to conduct these talks since the projected opening is still three years away.
Meanwhile, his side will focus on improving the service first, he said.
Back in Singapore, Sengkang MP Chua Kheng Wee said in a Facebook post on 27 Nov that he had asked Acting Transport Minister Chee Hong Tat whether his ministry would consider retaining the Shuttle Tebrau.
This will give travellers an alternative transport option, he reasoned.
While that’s still up in the air, at least in the three years that the Shuttle Tebrau has left, our Malaysian counterparts will be able to use it at cheaper rates.
Have news you must share? Get in touch with us via email at email@example.com.
Featured image adapted from Google Maps.
The book retailer has closed a slew of its stores over the last few years.
We can’t believe ‘The Eras Tour’ is finally right around the corner.
She called on everyone to stand on the side of humanity.
The victim sustained fractures to her elbow, hip and pelvis.
The wallet also contained the owner's work permit.
She even prepares dishes for them during festive occasions.