One of the highlights of the National Day Rally speech by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was hearing that mask wearing rules would be eased soon.
You can watch this video to know more about the new rules:
If you’re tired of not getting enough compliments on how good you look, or have had Mascne for awhile, this should be a win for you.
As of today (29 August), all individuals across Singapore would not be required to wear a mask except in healthcare facilities, and on public transport.
So, how has Singapore been responding to it?
Many Are Still Wearing Masks
It’s like how they say if you’ve caged an animal up for years, and suddenly set them free, they wouldn’t leave immediately or would return to the cage eventually because of how used to the confined conditions they’ve gotten.
Okay, it’s a bit of a stretch to liken the experience of animals being trapped in captivity to that of mask-wearing, but you get the gist.
We’ve been required to wear masks for over two and a half years now, so perhaps it’s unsurprising that many are still choosing to keep them on when out and about such as when walking along pathways.
While mask-wearing is mandated only in boarding areas of indoor bus interchanges, it is not required at naturally ventilated bus stops and interchanges.
However, you may have noticed that many are still keeping their masks on while waiting for buses at the latter areas.
A great deal of people who are heading towards bus stops or MRT interchanges also seen to be masked up even before boarding.
Maybe it’s out of convenience, health concerns, or in the case of the kiasu Singaporeans—fear of not being able to get a seat on board because they were scrambling to put on their masks in time.
Interestingly, a good majority of individuals in indoor spaces like malls are still wearing masks when shopping or queuing up to buy food.
A quick look in our office building shows that people are still wearing their masks—in fact, if you don’t put on one, you’d be the outcast instead.
Some safety personnel like security guards may still be wearing masks perhaps due to the nature of their job. The security guards in our office building are still wearing them, although some cleaners are working maskless.
Nevertheless, it seems that the rules for non mask-required zones is subject to an individual’s preferences.
If you’re in a crowded area, especially during rush hour, you may choose to exercise caution and keep your mask on anyway.
If you’ve gotten used to how you look like with a mask and it’s become part of your identity, then by all means, take your time to adjust.
Where Is Mask-Wearing Required?
As for public transport, the wearing of masks is required on all public buses, and MRT/LRT services.
It is not required on private bus services such as school buses or shuttle buses, taxis and private-hire vehicles, though passengers should still check with the operators when they are unsure.
As for public transport premises, you do not need to wear a mask in open air bus interchanges, or in the retail areas of bus interchanges and MRT/LRT stations.
However, make sure your masks are on when you’re in the boarding areas of indoor bus interchanges and underground MRT platforms.
As for healthcare facilities, residential care homes, an ambulances, mask-wearing is still mandated.
The same goes for COVID-19 testing centres, vaccination centres, and care facilities.
When you’re in hospitals, clinics, and national specialty centres, you would need to wear masks at all times, even at retail and F&B stores located within them.
However, masks are not required during physiotherapy sessions and in clinics located outside hospitals providing services like speech and occupational therapy, according to MOH.
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