4 Cross-Border Public Bus Services Will Follow Pre-Covid Operating Hours
So far they’ve had to use their cars or motorbikes, special buses or go on foot.
From 1 May, however, travellers will have more options to head to Johor Baru (JB), as public buses will resume operations.
For a more comfortable ride, they may also catch a taxi to JB from Queen Street.
8 bus services returning
In a Facebook post on Friday (22 Apr), the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said the resumption of cross-border bus services would follow one month after the reopening of the Singapore-Malaysia border.
A total of 8 services will be returning, including 3 from SBS Transit and one from SMRT Buses.
The 3 from SBS Transit are 160, 170 and 170X.
While 160 goes from Jurong East Bus Interchange to JB via the Causeway, 170 runs from Queen Street Terminal to Larkin Terminal in JB. 170X plies a shorter version of that route from Kranji MRT to JB Sentral.
950, operated by SMRT, starts from Woodlands Bus Interchange, loops at JB Sentral and returns to Singapore.
Another 4 services – TS1, TS3, TS6 and TS8 – will be operated by Transtar Travel.
With the resumption of public buses, the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) bus services will also end on 1 May — which means no more fighting for limited tickets.
Same operating hours as pre-Covid days
In a longer news release on Friday (22 Apr), LTA said the operating hours of the 4 services operated by SBS Transit and SMRT will return to that of pre-Covid days.
That means 160, 170, 170X and 950 will be running between 5.20am and 12.30am.
Their frequencies will also be similar to that of the old days — 20 minutes during peak hours and 25 minutes during off-peak hours for 160, 170, and 950. 170X will have a shorter interval of 9 minutes during peak hours and 17 minutes during off-peak hours.
Commuters are advised to check LTA’s MyTransport.SG app or operators’ websites if they want operating hours and arrival timings.
Drivers undergo familiarisation training
The public buses haven’t been in operation since Mar 2020, when Malaysia locked down the country due to rising Covid-19 cases.
As such, services like 160 and 170 had to loop around Woodlands instead of heading to JB.
Since Apr, however, bus operators have training their drivers to familiarise them with the routes in JB after 2 years of inoperation, said the LTA.
They’ve also been recruiting and redeploying drivers for the reopening.
Cross-border taxi also resuming
Those who prefer the faster option of hopping into a cab to JB will also be able to do so on 1 May.
According to the LTA, they’re working closely with Agensi Pengangkutan Awam Darat (APAD), their Malaysian counterpart, to resume cross-border taxi services.
When that happens, travellers will be able to simply get on a taxi from Queen Street taxi terminal.
They may also book a cab via taxi companies that have drivers licensed to drive across the border.
LTA reminded those crossing the border to comply with the travel requirements of both countries so they can pass through immigration smoothly.
Causeway back to normal soon
Now that public buses will resume soon, that only leaves cross-border train services yet to return to normal.
When that happens, the Causeway will really be back to its former self.
Coupled with the lifting of more restrictions in Singapore, we can finally say we’re moving slowly but surely out of the throes of the pandemic.
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