Staying away from the touts

  • Community
  • Thursday, 10 Apr 2008

I VISIT Penang annually during the winter months and get daily news updates on your island via Google alerts in Canada.

As an amateur photographer, I have travelled on Rapid Penang buses to George Town from Batu Feringghi to snap photos of heritage buildings or to go shopping.

I was not surprised to read about Rapid Penang’s drivers being threatened at Komtar recently.

Once, while waiting in Lane 1 at Komtar, I was harassed by a tonto from another bus company who put his megaphone in my face and tried to make me move from my seat.

I had to forcefully tell him “No, taking Rapid Penang”.

He scowled and was intimidating. Many of the locals who were also waiting there were too timid to stand their ground and went along with him.

I have stopped using the Komtar terminal because of the situation there. Not only is the terminal full of exhaust fumes from the idling old buses there, Rapid Penang Lanes 1 and 2 are very crowded and there is often no place to sit.

One also has to deal with the pesky touts from other bus companies.

I have noticed a large empty lot on one side of Komtar, just before the overhead bridge that has been vacant for years.

Could that not be used for the Rapid Penang terminal?

I don’t think sharing a terminal with the other bus companies is ever going to work.



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