Some hunger for dine-in, others to play it safe

KUANTAN: For some Malaysians whose favourite pastime is hanging out at their favourite mamak stall, they are thrilled that dine-in is allowed for those in Phase Two.

Syahmi Safim and Ashraff Azam, both 26, said they could not wait to have roti canai and teh tarik at a mamak restaurant.

“It’s been so long. Takeaway food just does not taste the same,” said Syahmi.

Ashraff, however, said it was important to be cautious and keep adhering to the SOP as there was still the risk of infection despite being fully vaccinated.

Lorry driver Mohd Fadzil Mohd Nasir, who works in Penang, said he was happy to be able to finally go out and eat. His work schedule and meal times are uncertain.

“So, it’s nice to enjoy a meal in an air-conditioned place instead of eating in my lorry,” said Mohd Fadzil, who already got his second dose of the vaccine.

Dine-in restrictions have been lifted from today for those who have been fully vaccinated. This applies to those in states under Phase Two of the National Recovery Plan, which are Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang, Perak, Penang and Sabah.

Among the rules of this latest policy are proper distancing of the table layout and a good ventilation system, while ensuring the number of customers at one table is at 50% capacity with at least one metre of physical distancing.

For now, many diners prefer to play it safe.

Engineer Nizam Md Yunus, 35, who have received two vaccine doses, said: “The vaccine does not give 100% protection from Covid-19. So the risk of infection is still there.

“I don’t feel comfortable dining outside due to this. It’s takeaway as usual for me.”

Sales executive Tommy Lee, 38, who is fully vaccinated, said he would gauge the situation first.

“If I see that the restaurant is full of people, I will not dine in,” he said.

“We are still not in the clear yet, so I think it’s important to adhere to the SOP.”

Bank officer Rozana Saad, 46, said she was worried about the high number of daily Covid-19 cases.

“I will keep cooking at home or order takeout at this moment,” she said.

Hawker Pang Ah Cheng, 64, felt that the new rule would not make a difference in the number of customers at the food court where he works.

“I think most people will come here just for takeaways. The public may still feel apprehensive about dining in,” he said.

For IT executive Asrol Mahizan, 35, he is quite sceptical about dining in.

“Strict SOP must be established and followed,” he said.

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