S’pore-M’sia VTL: the first 2 buses from JB arrive at S’pore with only 4 passengers – Mothership.SG
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A grand total of four people arrived in Singapore from Malaysia on the first two buses that made the trip here under the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) overland route on Monday morning November 29. The times of the straits reported.
The first bus arrived at Queen Street Bus Station here at 9.48am with three people.
He was delayed, according to ST, who also reported that four people boarded the bus but one person was denied access and was unable to complete the trip as their name was not registered with Johor Bahru Customs.
The second bus that arrived in Singapore at 9:51 am carried only one passenger.
He said his bus left Larkin Sentral Bus Station in Johor Baru at 7:30 a.m. after waiting inside for 45 minutes.
Two of the four passengers interviewed said they were back in Malaysia for short visits to see their families and used the VTL to return to Singapore.
Tickets would have been sold out
The arrival of only a handful of passengers from JB is disconcerting, as there have been previous reports that tickets for the land VTL traveling in both directions were sold out or unavailable right after the tickets launched.
Tickets are only offered by two bus operators – Transtar Travel and Handal Indah – and they went on sale November 25 at 8 a.m.
ANC reported that more than 12,000 users waited their turn in a virtual waiting room within 15 minutes of the virtual ticket queue at 8 am to purchase tickets to come to Singapore.
VTL puts citizens, PRs and workers first
Up to 1,440 Singaporean citizens, permanent residents and long-term Singapore pass holders can cross the causeway into Singapore each day via VTL.
Land VTL currently prioritizes workers from Singapore or Malaysia who have not returned home since the land border was closed in March 2020.
When they arrive, they will no longer have to serve quarantine.
This is a different arrangement than those returning home via the Periodic Travel Arrangement, which requires a seven-day quarantine at designated facilities or hotels upon arrival in Malaysia or Singapore.
Those using the VTL only need to pass two Covid-19 tests before entering Singapore or Malaysia.
What happens on arrival via VTL
Passengers are held in a cordoned off area after getting off the buses.
They will have a rapid antigen test at a temporary swab center.
Those who test positive for Covid-19 must take a confirmatory PCR test at the center.
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