WITH Hari Raya Aidilfitri less than a week away, express bus tickets are selling briskly, with some destinations to the east coast already sold out.
Ticketing staff at the Meru bus terminal said tickets to east coast destinations such as Kota Baru, Kuantan, Temerloh and Kuala Terengganu for June 23 and 24 have been snapped up.
City Holiday Express ticketing staff Faziera Tarmizhi, 23, said many people made early bookings and the company has also prepared extra buses because of the demand.
“Tickets for the Ipoh-Kota Baru route for June 23 to 24 are sold out. There are still tickets for other destinations like Johor Baru, Kulim and Kuala Lumpur, but they are selling fast too,” said Faziera.
She said tickets are normally sold out one week before the festival starts and she and her colleagues always remind people to get tickets quickly.
“Many made early bookings for our express buses and this is why some of our destinations are sold out,” she said.
SP Bumi Express ticketing staff Norazean Ridzwan, 33, said tickets are still available but she believes they will be sold before the end of Ramadan.
“We have buses that go to Jertih, Bandar Permaisuri and Kuala Terengganu and these buses for June 23 and 24 are half booked.
“Right now, the terminal doesn’t look too busy but soon it will be. Normally, we see huge crowds from the third week of Ramadan onwards.”
Plusliner and Transnasional ticketing staff Siti Sarah Abdullah, 19, said tickets are still available for northern and southern destinations, but expects them to be sold out before Hari Raya.
Seri Maju Express ticketing officer Norsharirah Sharifudin, 26, said people do not need to hit the panic button yet but it is always better for them to purchase tickets earlier to ease their worries.
“Some of our buses are almost full for the northern and southern destinations.
“Right now, the situation is under control but in the final week before Hari Raya, it will be a little chaotic. So my advice to people is to always get their tickets earlier,” she said.
Last week, Pan-Malaysia Bus Operators Association President Datuk Dr Mohamad Ashfar Ali advised the public to book their tickets as early as possible.
He said express bus companies under the association’s umbrella often add extra buses if tickets are sold out, but it would be easier all around if tickets were purchased, so bus operators have time to apply for temporary licences and hire extra drivers for the additional trips.