Transport

Massive Crowds At Johor Checkpoints Over Vesak Day Weekend, Travellers Queue Up To 7 Hours

Johor Checkpoints Flooded With People Over Vesak Day Long Weekend

Those who heaved a sigh of relief as the Vesak Day long weekend arrived probably sighed in exasperation instead if they found themselves at the Johor Bahru (JB) checkpoints.

The crowd situation was apparently so bad that some people were stuck there for hours.

The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) even recorded the highest departure volume on Thursday (1 June) since the reopening of borders.

Travellers crowd Johor checkpoints over Vesak Day weekend

With Friday (2 June) being the Vesak Day public holiday, folks eager for a weekend getaway already began heading to the Singapore-Johor checkpoints on Thursday (1 June).

Although the ICA had earlier warned of possible heavy traffic, nobody probably anticipated the extent of it.

Those who arrived at the Sultan Iskandar Building (BSI) and the Sultan Abu Bakar Complex (KSAB) on 1 and 2 June saw a sight similar to this the moment they got there:

Source: Facebook

According to the OP who shared the above photo, all counters were open at the time but lines were barely moving. Though her spot seemed rather close to the front, she claimed that she had already been in the queue for two hours and was still taking so long to reach the counters.

She shared her experience at almost 8pm yesterday (2 June) but the problem seemed to have started way earlier.

Another Facebook user arrived at Johor immigration checkpoint at about 8.35am to crowds already forming everywhere.

Source: Facebook

This appeared to be the spillover effect from as early as Thursday (1 June), as one netizen saw long queues even past 1am that night.

 

Source: Facebook

Insane queues up to 7 hours long

The best way to understand the severity of the situation is through the eyes of a traveller who went through it all.

One such person shared his experience on TikTok yesterday (1 June), of how he spent 7 hours in line at the Johor checkpoint.

The OP said that clearing the Singapore customs was a breeze, as he took less than 20 minutes. Traffic was also decent — the horror only came when he reached the Johor checkpoint, where the queue apparently started outside the building.

Source: @mentaikofries_ on TikTok

This observation was corroborated by a Facebook user who also snapped a photo of the queue situation outside KSAB.

Source: Facebook

Within the building was no better, as the TikTok user found himself in a seemingly endless sea of people.

Source: @mentaikofries_ on TikTok

For the next few hours, the lines inched at a painfully slow pace, as he only made it to the front after nearly seven hours.

The OP eventually made it across to JB at 8pm, before which he managed to complete multiple activities to pass the time.

Source: @mentaikofries_ on TikTok

Inefficient clearance by immigration officers

An MS News reader, Lucy, who was also in the queue on Friday (2 June) shared that she stood in line for about 3.5 hours.

Unlike the TikTok user, her experience wasn’t as pleasant, as she recalled hearing young children bawling and elderly folk who looked to be in their 70s standing for as long as she did.

Lucy also spotted Malaysian immigration officers seemingly chatting at the counters while the massive crowd stood in front of them.

Frustrated with the situation, she talked to fellow commuters including a Malaysian uncle who said that he has been dealing with it every day for the past 40 years.

Reflecting on the entire issue, Lucy said,

The place was full and immigration officers were too slow to clear the crowds. I found that overwhelmingly unacceptable and didn’t understand how come people didn’t rise up to such blatant inefficiency. It was a gruesome load on even a young body like my own, not to mention the sick and old.

Queues for e-gates significantly shorter & quicker

While some had hellish encounters, there were also those who had vastly different experiences.

These were folks who cleared customs via the e-gates, taking no more than a few minutes to do so.

Source: Facebook

Highest traveller volume since borders reopened

In light of the jam, the ICA shared on Facebook that they recorded the highest departure volume on Thursday (1 June) since the reopening of land borders.

Source: Immigration & Checkpoints Authority on Facebook

While the ICA claimed that nearly 250,000 people departed Singapore through Tuas and Woodlands checkpoints, Johor recorded higher numbers.

Chief Minister Onn Hafiz Ghazi noted that Johor’s two land checkpoints accounted for the following traffic volumes:

  • BSI — 258,000 travellers
  • KSAB — 63,000 travellers

He described the congestion as “unprecedented” and immediately thought of ways to tackle it.

One suggestion was to activate temporary pathways during peak periods like public holidays to manage human traffic flow.

More importantly, he urged officers working at the checkpoints to continue working responsibly and being on alert.

As of 8.35am this morning (3 June), the ICA already issued a warning to expect heavy departure traffic at Woodlands Checkpoint.

At the time of writing, there did appear to be a line of vehicles on the Causeway to Johor.

Source: OneMotoring

If you’re planning to cross the Causeway soon, do check the latest traffic situation before planning your journey.

Hopefully, the congestion will ease in due time and queues will move along quicker.

Have a safe trip to your destination and back home, and enjoy your holiday with loved ones.

Have news you must share? Get in touch with us via email at news@mustsharenews.com.

Featured image adapted from Facebook and Facebook.

Fayyadhah Zainalabiden

Fayyadhah spends most of her free time wondering why there's nothing fun to do and wastes the rest of her time on Netflix.

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