The Chinese New Year holidays will soon be upon us, and PLUS Malaysia is looking to ensure proper traffic distribution and highway operations so the public can enjoy a smoother journey on major highways like the North-South Expressway and ELITE Highway during the period.

“We anticipate 1.6 million vehicles will be plying the NSE on every peak day during the festive season. The figure translates to a 15% increase as compared to the number of traffic on a normal working day,” said PLUS managing director, Datuk Azman Ismail.

According to the company’s records, it expects traffic on the NSE will be at its peak on January 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 and 31, as well as on February 4 and 5. Azman explained that PLUS will offer toll rebates on selected dates and issue a travel time advisory (TTA) as part of efforts to distribute traffic on these peak days.

For the toll rebates, Class 1 vehicle (those with two axles and three or four wheels excluding taxis) owners paying toll via PLUSMiles cards, Touch ‘n Go cards and SmartTAGs on the NSE and ELITE highway will be eligible to receive a 50% toll rebate.

However, the rebate is only offered only to those paying toll between 12am and 6am on designated dates – January 27 and 30; February 3 and 4. Additionally, the toll rebate will not be applied to toll transactions conducted at the Penang Bridge, Tanjung Kupang, Bukit Kayu Hitam and Sultan Iskandar Building toll plazas.

The rebate will not be given on-the-spot, and users are still required to pay the normal toll rates before the rebate is credited into their electronic cards (in the form of toll reloads) when they top up their cards at PLUS customer service centres between February 15 and May 14, 2017.

As with other festive seasons and long holidays, PLUS has also issued a TTA to assist the public in planning their journey. “The TTA enables us to distribute traffic and prevents vehicles from converging at the same locations and time which contribute to traffic congestion on the mainline,” said Azman.

For this year’s TTA, PLUS advises those planning to travel back their hometowns in Perlis, Kedah, Penang, North Perak and Johor to enter the highway before 12pm. Meanwhile, those heading towards destinations such as Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Malacca, South Perak and Central Perak are advised to start their journey and enter the NSE after 2pm on the designated days.

Aside from these two initiatives, PLUS will also assign more personnel during the CNY holiday period, including more PLUSRonda teams, PLUSLine staff and maintenance staff. It will also cease all highway road pavement and maintenance works between January 26 and February 5.