You know when they say that good things come to those that wait? Well, for the people residing in Malaysia that have been mostly cooped up in their abodes – the time has come! Sure, this long wait was imposed on us, but that was the price for managing the pandemic of an unprecedented scale. We Malaysians are now allowed to cross the borders freely – that’s right, no more applying for police permits, no more mandatory checking at the toll gates and exits, no more needing to make do with video calls and such things that we were limited by (which means no more evolving acronyms like RMCO, CMCO, MCO that took some reading up).
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Yakoob addressed the nation in a special announcement on October 10 telling us that interstate travel will be permitted for all fully vaccinated Malaysians. This was made possible because of the effort pumped into our vaccination plans – 95 percent of the adults in Malaysia have received their first dose and 90 percent are fully inoculated.
The country’s borders will remain closed to international travel for now unless there’s a valid reason (emergencies, businesses, and official government purposes). Malaysians that have been deprived of meeting their family and friends can do so freely but need also be mindful that the police will still be conducting random checks from time to time.
However, this interstate travel ban lift does not mean that the precautions that need to be observed can be ignored. Wearing masks and other such Covid-19 standard operating procedures are still mandatory – in fact, it is best to remain prudent and conform to a ‘new form of normal’. Do check to see which phase of the National Recovery Plan the state you’re planning to travel to falls under and adhere to the regulations.
- Phase 1 – no more states under Phase 1
- Phase 2 – Sabah, Perak, Penang, Kelantan, and Kedah
- Phase 3 - Perlis, Malacca, Terengganu, Selangor, Sarawak, Johor, Putrajaya, and Kuala Lumpur
- Phase 4 – Negeri Sembilan, Labuan, and Pahang
Chin up, folks – you can now travel to Ipoh for that hor fun that you’ve been craving for; visit Sabah for some snorkelling or scuba diving, head to Sarawak for their caves and hiking trails, enjoy Baba Nyonya food in Malacca, swim in the waterfalls of Terengganu and even pig feast at Petaling Street. With Deepavali coming up, you can even plan a trip to Batu Caves for some Indian treats. Where will you be travelling to first?
Written by Darinee Durai