Friday, February 18, 2022

My Sejahtera App

Everyone in Malaysia is required have or be covered by a COVID App for Tracing and Tracking.

Sejahtera means “Safe” and “Prosperous” in English.  The My Sejahtera App is a combination of two COVID Apps. 

Our Status while under Quarantine    
MyTrace Malaysia is a Bluetooth scanner that looks to be an outgrowth of the Open-Source Blue Trace project initially developed by Singapore.   




It anonymously tracks all other MyTrace enabled phones for distance and duration of contact.  It notifies you if you have come in contact with a COVID infected person.

Typical QR Poster at businesses    
The other App, My Sejahtera, is a QR scanner and logger.  All businesses have a QR poster at their entrance.  You scan the QR and it is logged to your phone.  The data is only kept on your phone but if you get COVID, the health officials will download the time specific log and use it for contact tracing.
Self Test Results to be uploaded    

You can also upload COVID test results and vaccinations using the app. 

Since almost everything is handled by the individual cellphone, no information is sent to a central server unless you end up with COVID.  In that case, the health department accesses the data and encrypted notifications are sent out to other My Sejahtera equipped phones.

The app  seems to be pretty good.  It works whether you have a data connection or not.  The only downside is that there may be a queue for Checking-in if you go to a busy place.

I know Americans that would freak out about having to use an app like this because of freedom or some such thing but they sure don't mind letting google track their every search.

These types of things save lives and we don't mind doing our part.


Thursday, February 17, 2022

Vacation In “The Bubble”


The Bubble Bracelet
We booked our flight on Qatar Airways from PHL-DOH-KUL-LGK and have a return from KUL-DOH and DOH-PHL with a 3 day layover to explore Doha.

We were given these fancy bracelets that let us get in special lines for Immigration , domestic connections, and testing.  

We had a PCR test that was done in an hour, not days, during the turnaround in KL and made the connection  for the flight to Langkawi. 

Upon arrival, we were picked up by the tour company and taken to the Royal Langkawi Yacht Club Hotel.

View from our room

We could have stayed at any resort on the island but it is nice to support the yachting community and the price was decent.  




 The entire bubble package was $1000 for the week including all the COVID testing.  This is about the same price as a Kuala Lumpur quarantine hotel except they do include meals in KL since you are locked in your room the whole time.

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

The only way back to Malaysia

It’s been a while since blogging and another post about COVID seemed unnecessary.

We've just spent the past 2 years in the US waiting for Malaysia to open back up and allow us return to the boat.  It was a good break and we got a lot of house projects done that have been deferred since our pre-boat times.

But, time’s a wasting and we need to get back to the business of boat refitting and Cruising.

For foreigners, there has been only one way to get into Malaysia.  We tried twice since last summer to obtain this coveted Travel Pass Visa but were denied both times.

Due to the economic loss to the tourism sector, an agreement was reached on November 15th which allowed the Island of Langkawi to serve as a quarantine station.  This Langkawi Travel Bubble is not dependent on any government approval and when the one week quarantine is over, free travel throughout Malaysia is permitted.

To comply with The Bubble requirements, we had to book a hotel for a week, have round trip tickets, and perform daily COVID testing.  Additionally, like the entire population of Malaysia, we had to have and use the MySejahtera tracking App. 

Even if we had been approved for the regular "Travel Pass Visa", we still would have had to quarantine for 5 days in a restricted COVID hotel in Kuala Lumpur.

So, a one week vacation in Langkawi versus 5 days locked in a hotel room in KL.  Seems like a no brainer, so off we go.