Muslims in Indonesia joyful for family reunion on Eid after 2-year homecoming exodus ban

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2022-04-05

   

People walk on the street with the food they bought from the seasonal market specifically for Iftar foods during the month of Ramadan at Bendungan Hilir, Jakarta, Indonesia, April 4, 2022. (Xinhua/Veri Manovri)

It is already estimated that around 79 million people would travel across the Southeast Asia’s most populated nation for the exodus, according to Indonesia’s Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi.

by Nurul Ramadhan

JAKARTA, April 5 (Xinhua) — Lia Hariyanti, a 34-year-old nurse working in Indonesia’s capital city Jakarta, bought a train ticket to Malang, East Java province, on Sunday, the first day of Ramadan in Indonesia.

The trip scheduled on April 24 would be her first time after two years to gather again with her family to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, a festivity which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

“I am super excited and cannot wait for the Eid holiday, although I had to queue for more than 24 hours to be able to book the ticket. I have also taken an one-month leave from work so that I can spend longer time with my family,” Lia told Xinhua.

Final-year accounting student Teguh Hanafi plans to buy a plane ticket to travel to his hometown in Padang, West Sumatra province, expecting to fly one week before the Eid al-Fitr day, which is supposed to fall on May 2 or May 3.

“I want to stay with my family for some time whilst doing my thesis research. I don’t want to be away from them for such a long time again,” Teguh said.

Lia and Teguh would be among millions of people in Indonesia to join the annual tradition of homecoming exodus, locally known as “mudik”, a family gathering moment which is highly associated with Ramadan in Indonesia.

A seller arranges traditional food at the seasonal market specifically for Iftar foods during the month of Ramadan at Bendungan Hilir, Jakarta, Indonesia, April 4, 2022. (Xinhua/Veri Manovri)

It is already estimated that around 79 million people would travel across the Southeast Asia’s most populated nation for the exodus, according to Indonesia’s Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi.

The past two years have become challenges for many Indonesians as the country has implemented public mobility restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited domestic and international travelers.

Last year, thousands of people violated the exodus ban and travelled home. In the weeks after the holidays, the country saw a surge in COVID-19 cases and fatalities, according to Indonesia’s health ministry.

This year, with more people having been vaccinated and drops in daily COVID-19 cases, the authorities have eased a number of restrictions and allowed the “mudik” back.

Starting April 2, home bound travelers who have received booster shots are no longer required to show swab test results, according to a circular issued by Indonesia’s COVID-19 task force.

People wait to receive COVID-19 vaccine provided by the Indonesian Police at an inoculation site in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 2, 2022. (Xinhua/Zulkarnain)

Meanwhile, travelers who have received two doses of vaccines are required to show negative results of antigen tests, and those who have only received one dose have to show negative RT-PCR test results.

Lia and Teguh have decided to buy tickets early as they are afraid that the tickets would be sold out earlier than usual.

Bayu Sutanto, secretary general of the Indonesia National Air Carrier Association, has said that airline companies predicted the surging demands, and is confident that the current air flights are enough to accommodate passengers.

“I expected the ticket prices would jump high, but it doesn’t really matter for me as long as I can meet my family, particularly my mother,” Teguh said.

“I really miss my mother. I have already bought many new clothes for her and some other family members. I can’t wait to fly home,” Teguh said. ■

source https://english.news.cn/20220405/fb5f77f8f82544e9abf940697708c733/c.html

Categories: Asia, Indonesia

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