COVID-19 test mandatory on road trips exceeding 250 km: Transportation Ministry

Illustration. Photo: Art Markiv / Unsplash
Illustration. Photo: Art Markiv / Unsplash

As part of the government’s drive (pun totally intended) to expand COVID-19 testing coverage ahead of the year-end holiday, the Transportation Ministry has rolled out a new screening rule for long road trips in Java and Bali.

In an official circular, the ministry stated that, effective immediately, travelers on road trips that exceed 250 kilometers and/or 4 hours must be able to show proof of vaccination (at least one dose) and present a negative result from a PCR or antigen test.

“The PCR test result is valid for up to 3 days, while the antigen test result is valid for up to 24 hours,” Transportation Ministry Road Transportation Director General Budi Setiyadi said yesterday.

The rule applies to trips using private and public vehicles. Travelers may be required to show that they have fulfilled travel requirements at checkpoints or rest stops set up throughout major highways.

Under the new rules, travelers from Jakarta theoretically would not have to get tested to drive to nearby Bandung, but would have to do so for longer trips such as to Surabaya and Bali.

Previously, a negative antigen test result sufficed for road trips of any distance within Java and Bali.
The government last week announced plans to make the more reliable PCR test mandatory on all modes of transportation ahead of Christmas and New Year in order to minimize false negatives and prevent a surge in COVID-19 cases. To make the test more accessible to Indonesians, the government also lowered the price for a PCR test to IDR275K (US$19) in Java and Bali.

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