SINGAPORE: The QR code customs clearance system at Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints that was officially activated this week has significantly cut travel times, with some travelers clearing customs in less than a minute compared to the average five minutes it used to take.

Since Tuesday (19 Mar), passengers entering and exiting by car from Woodlands and Tuas Checkpoints can use QR codes to clear customs without using a passport. This innovation aims to alleviate congestion and reduce waiting times, particularly during peak hours.

In a firsthand trial conducted by two reporters from CNA, the efficacy of the QR code system was put to the test. The reporters embarked on their journey from Singapore to Malaysia via the Woodlands Checkpoint during the customary rush hour at 5:20pm.

Despite the bustling traffic, including the time required for customs personnel to validate their identities, the duo seamlessly cleared the checkpoint in just 55 seconds.

While the Malaysian customs clearance process proved comparatively time-consuming, the overall journey elapsed in less than 20 minutes, with the reporters arriving in Malaysia at 5:39 pm. Such expeditious border crossing experiences have been hailed as a rarity by motorists familiar with the usual delays.

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The introduction of the QR code customs clearance system has garnered widespread praise from the public, who laud its user-friendly interface and time-saving benefits.

Welcoming the reduced clearance times and enhanced convenience, travelers expressed hope that Malaysia will also adopt a similar customs clearance system to slash travel times even further.