Horrifying queues at S'pore-Johor checkpoints on Vesak Day weekend, 4.5 hours to clear customs by car

250,000 travellers departed Singapore on Jun. 1, the highest since borders reopened.

Gawain Pek | June 02, 2023, 03:08 PM

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If you are making plans to head into Johor Bahru for the long Vesak Day weekend, remember to bring along the patience of a Buddha.

Based on photos uploaded to social media pages, long queues were seen at both the Tuas and Woodland land crossings.


This was what the crowd situation at Sultan Iskandar Building on the Johor side of the Woodlands crossing was like at 11:40am this morning.

Based on photos shared to Facebook page "Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates", travellers can be seen waiting outside where those making the crossing by bus would usually alight to head up and into the customs clearance area.

Image via Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates/Facebook.

Image via Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates/Facebook.

Image via Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates/Facebook.

Inside, the compound was so packed with people barely any gaps were visible between individuals.

Image via Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates/Facebook.

In a video posted to Facebook group "JB/SG Human traffic updates", some shuffling among the crowd can be observed at around 10:20am.

Gif via SG/JB Human Traffic Updates on Facebook.

4.5 hours to enter JB by car

At 2:05pm, ICA shared an updated advisory that it will be enforcing a "No Right Turn" rule for drivers seeking to enter Woodlands Checkpoint via Woodlands Centre Road.

It added that there was heavy departure traffic at both Woodlands and Tuas due to tailbacks from Malaysia.

According to the Checkpoints.sg app, as at 2:33pm on Jun. 2, it will take around three to four-and-a-half hours to get into JB by car via both Woodlands and Tuas.

Screenshot via Checkpoints.sg.

Screenshot via Checkpoints.sg

Jams overnight

Apparently, the jam on the causeway began piling up overnight on Jun. 2.

Under a Xiaohongshu post about the causeway jam, one user commented that she boarded a bus at 11pm on Jun. 1 but only reached the JB customs at 6am the following morning.

The user wrote: "I boarded the bus at 11pm. In the end, I only reached the JB customs at 6am the next morning." Image via Xiaohongshu.

Over at Second Link, Facebook user Alan Lok San Yin shared a photo at around 11:06pm on Jun. 1 of the traffic situation.

A traffic pile-up is observed, likely on the Malaysian side.

Image via Alan Lok Yan Sin/Facebook.

At 7am on Jun. 2, the travel time to reach JB via the Woodlands crossing was around three hours, according to a Facebook post by Astro Radio Traffic.

250,000 travellers crossed causeway on Jun. 1: ICA

In a Facebook post on Jun. 2, the Immigrations and Checkpoint Authority (ICA) shared that 250,000 travellers departed Singapore through Woodlands and Tuas on Jun. 1.

This is the "highest since the reopening of the borders", and is in view of the Vesak Day holiday coupled with the June school holidays.

"Traffic is expected to remain very heavy at both land checkpoints with continuous tailbacks from the Malaysia’s checkpoints for departing motorists. Those who wish to depart to Malaysia or enter Singapore via the land checkpoints by car or bus, are advised to factor in additional waiting time for immigration clearance. ICA also seeks travellers’ understanding and cooperation to be patient, observe traffic rules, maintain lane discipline, and cooperate with officers on-site when using the land checkpoints."

Top image via Singapore JB Checkpoints Live Traffic Updates/Facebook, Checkpoints.sg