Since the RMCO started in June, many sectors of the Malaysian economy have resumed operations. A month on, even establishments such as cinemas and nurseries, closed for over three months, have reopened their doors. In the midst of this slow return to what constitutes “normal life”, a number of domestic travel establishments have also begun to gradually stir from their slumber.
From Sunway Lagoon and Legoland to Genting Highlands, plenty of popular local travel hotspots have now reopened. Understandable since most of us have been staying at home since March! However, while a little bit of cuti-cuti Malaysia is all well and good, there are certain things to take note of when travelling during this time.
Even though the COVID-19 situation in Malaysia seems under control, we should still remain vigilant. This is especially the case now that more people are starting to travel interstate again. So before you head off on your well-deserved staycation, take heed of these tips to stay safe!
Be mindful of personal hygiene
Yes, I know, you’re probably sick of hearing this piece of advise already. Unfortunately, while most Malaysians were very disciplined and stuck to the SOPs in the early stages of the MCO, lately I’ve noticed that some people have become a little negligent.
Yes, the number of cases are way down now, but that’s no excuse to take personal hygiene lightly. This is especially true if you’re travelling around during this time. Make good personal hygiene a habit. Even as you enjoy your time off, always make sure to stay safe.
This means regularly washing your hands, avoid touching your face, maintaining social distancing and practising good sneezing/coughing etiquette. And, as advised by both KKM and the WHO, wear a mask when visiting public places.
Adding new items to your travel pack
Whenever we go travelling, we usually draw up a mental checklist of items to pack. In this new climate of post-pandemic travel, there are some new items that should be on your travel essentials list. These include masks, hand sanitisers, and antibacterial wet wipes (if necessary) among others.
Embrace the new norms of travel
Apart from the addition of a few new items in your travel kit, you should also get comfortable with new ways of doing certain things. For example, now is the time to make contactless payment options (such as pay wave or e-wallets) a new habit. Not only are these more convenient, but they also minimise the risk of infection by eliminating any unnecessary close contact with other people.
Apart from this, since many establishments are currently operating on a reduced capacity to ensure social distancing, it’s also a good idea to call ahead or make an appointment before you arrive at a particular establishment.
Pay attention to your health and note any symptoms you may have
No matter how cautious we are, sometimes, our bodies just can’t help falling sick. If you suddenly feel ill during your travels, the first thing you should do is basically stop moving around. If you suspect that you may have COVID-19, contact the local health authorities and inform the staff at the establishment. By taking these steps, you help minimise any risk of a potential outbreak.
Adhere to contact tracing SOPs
This is perhaps the most important tip of all! Contact tracing helps health authorities to quickly identify, isolate and treat those who are infected by COVID-19 or those who may have been exposed. This will help curb any potential spread and limit any new outbreaks.
For Malaysians, MySejahtera is the most important app to have on your phone as you travel locally. It tracks and logs your movement when you check in to a certain place, so if there are any confirmed COVID-19 cases in that area/location, the authorities can track you down.
You might think, “Nevermind la, won’t happen to me one. No need la.” That’s where you’re wrong. In a recent press conference in June, DG Noor Hisham confirmed that more than 200 cases were successfully identified thanks to the app! So, for your own safety and that of those around you, please, download the app and make use of it!
Apart from keeping track of places you’ve been to, you can also use the app to check on the COVID-19 status of each state/location. You can even stay up to date on the number of cases reported in a certain area over the past 28 days.
What’s more, only those who have downloaded and registered with the app will be able to receive the RM50 E-Wallet allocation promised by the government. Basically, if you haven’t downloaded it yet, it’s super important to do so before you start travelling again!
Enjoy your break!
And that’s it. As long as you follow the above five tips and pay close attention to your surroundings, you’ll be able to go on a stress-free, fun-filled vacation! And of course, this is good practise for when Malaysia’s borders reopen and international travel is once again possible!