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Indonesians kick off Eid homecoming early to beat traffic

Jakarta Globe - April 2, 2024

Candra Kurnia & Usman & Chairul Fikri, Cirebon/Karawang – Indonesians have begun their Eid homecoming early, with motorcyclists from Jakarta and surrounding areas already making their way through Karawang and Cirebon districts in West Java since Monday morning.

These travelers opted for an early departure to avoid traffic congestion along the Java North Coast (Pantura) route, a favorite route for Eid travelers.

One of the travelers, Ryan, mentioned he deliberately returned to his hometown in Brebes, Central Java earlier not only to steer clear of traffic but also because he had taken a leave from work.

Muhammad Toha, heading to Banjarnegara, Central Java, chose to start his journey early to steer clear of traffic jams.

"From Jakarta, I'm heading to Banjarnegara. I chose to start early to avoid getting stuck in traffic," he told Beritasatu.com in Cirebon, West Java.

During Eid, Indonesians traditionally embark on journeys to their hometowns for family gatherings. The Ministry of Transportation estimates that 193.6 million people, roughly 71.7 percent of the country's population, will participate in these travels this year, marking a substantial 50 percent increase from last year's exodus.

Motorcycles are one of the preferred modes of transportation for travelers. It is estimated that 31.12 million people will travel by motorcycle.

Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said that to prevent congestion and reduce accident rates during Eid homecoming, they are providing free transportation. This was announced during the launch of B-Universe's Eid Homecoming Traffic Coverage Team at Pantai Indah Kapuk 2 (PIK 2), Tangerang, on Monday.

"Free transportation is one way for us to reduce the number of travelers using motorcycles. From our data, 70 percent of accidents during Eid homecoming occur among motorcyclists. So, we advise against using motorcycles because the government, police, and private sectors are offering free transportation, which can be utilized," said the minister.

Budi urged the public to start their journeys early to avoid congestion.

"President Joko Widodo recommended starting the journey early. The peak is on four days before Eid. So, we advise you to travel five to ten days before Eid because it's less crowded then. Even our toll roads offer discounts," Budi said.

The government predicts that most of the population movement during Eid homecoming will be directed toward Java Island, with the three largest destinations being Central Java with 61.6 million people, East Java with 37.6 million people, and West Java with 32.1 million people.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/indonesians-kick-off-eid-homecoming-early-to-beat-traffi