New toll roads, more free rides smoothen Idul Fitri exodus: Minister
The Jakarta Post
This year’s Idul Fitri mudik (exodus) has been praised by many societal elements as “the smoothest mudik” compared to those in previous years. The operation of more toll roads has given alternative routes to motorists packing Java’s northern coastal area (Pantura) highways every Idul Fitri mudik.
Meanwhile, motorcyclists have also been served with more free homebound travel services both by land and sea. The government has provided 17 vessels to transport motorcycle travelers. It also has dispatched buses, which traveled trailed by trucks carrying the travelers’ motorcycles during mudik.
Heavy traffic congestion predicted to occur during the peak of the Idul Fitri mudik on June 8 and 9 did not come to fruition.
Happy time: Children play in a playing ground provided by state railway company KAI Operational Region (Daop) IV Semarang for travellers at Tawang Station in Semarang, Central Java, on June 12. (JP/Suherdjoko)
News reports have revealed homebound travelers could travel smoothly and safely from Greater Jakarta areas to Central Java without having to suffer from fatigue because there was no severe traffic congestion.
“Based on our monitoring results, there has been no congestion today. The peak of this year’s Idul Fitri mudik has occurred seven and six days before the holiday festivity. Even if there was a line of vehicles, it was only 1 kilometer long,” said Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi on Tuesday.
Soegijapranata Catholic University transportation expert Djoko Setijowarno said the smooth holiday mudik was a result of the government’s decision to increase the number of cuti bersama (collective leave days) for civil servants for this year’s Idul Fitri holiday.
“Travelers got more flexibility to choose what day they would travel back to their hometown to celebrate Idul Fitri. The presence of new toll roads has made mudik smoother,” he said. (ebf)
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