Jakarta (ANTARA) - Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi has reiterated his call for residents not to use motorcycles for long home-bound trips or "mudik" ahead of and during this year's Eid al-Fitr holiday season for the sake of safety reason.

"As last year, I also urged (our people) not to use motorcycles (for homecoming trips) because riding motorcycles for long trips is dangerous," Sumadi stated at an online press conference observed here on Sunday.

To prevent the home-bound travelers from riding the motorbikes, the government provides them with free travel facilities for going to their hometowns to spend Eid al-Fitr with their families, he noted.

"For this year's Eid al-Fitr, the Transportation Ministry organises a free homecoming programme to anticipate the surge of residents returning to their hometowns," he said.

The ministry's 2024 Eid al-Fitr Free Homecoming Programme is available for travelers, particularly those who are used to traveling to their hometowns by motorcycles. They can select their preferred transportation modes -- ships, buses, or trains -- for free of charge.

The government aims to reduce the rate of road accidents during the Eid al-Fitr exodus period by encouraging residents to travel by using public transportation services.

Travelers can apply to join the free sea travel from March 13 to April 7, 2024. The quota for the sea travel is available for 9,800 passengers, and 4,800 motorcycles scheduled to be transported to selected destinations from April 3 to April 17, 2024.

Meanwhile, travelers seeking to travel by land can register through mobile application "Mitra Darat" from March 5 to April 3, 2024.

The government provides 722 buses for 30,088 passengers and 30 trucks to transport 900 motorcycles, departing for the homecoming-bound destinations on April 5-7, 2024, and the return trips on April 14-15, 2024.

The ministry also provides free railway travel for those registered through the ministry's website or directly at 18 selected train stations, including Jakarta's Gudang (Warehouse) Station, Depok Baru Station, and Bekasi Station, from March 4 to April 18, 2024.

There are 28,196 seats available for departure date on April 2-8, 2024, and return date on April 13-19. The authority also provides free railway freight services for 12,180 motorcycles with the same departure date as passengers.

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Translator: Sinta Ambarwati, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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