S M Ong: We need SafeEntry check-in etiquette, Latest Others News - The New Paper

S M Ong: We need SafeEntry check-in etiquette

Don't block the QR code

You're in a hurry.

You don't want to be late for the job interview. Otherwise, the interviewer might lament on Facebook about our generation not being hungry enough. Or worse, call you an adult baby.

Why doesn't the company just do a Zoom interview? Don't these people know there's a pandemic going on?

When you reach the building, a small crowd is milling around the entrance.

Aiyah, forgot. Must do SafeEntry.

You fumble with your phone to open the TraceTogether or SingPass app.

You're trying to scan the QR code, but so are the people in front of you, getting in your way.

Who knew the omnipresent QR code would take over our lives in 2020? Even when you sleep, you need to scan the SafeEntry QR code to enter your dreams. It's everywhere.

You consider getting your IC scanned instead. Would that be quicker?

Wait, you spot another SafeEntry QR code that no one seems to have noticed. There are actually a few of them. Why didn't you see them earlier?

Why do people crowd around one QR code when there are others? This must be what US President Donald Trump meant by "herd mentality".

You scan the damn QR code and join the stream of people going in. Suddenly, everyone lurches to a halt. Now what?

You look ahead. Some blur king has stopped to scan a QR code, obliviously blocking everyone behind him. You want to give him a stern warning, but you have an appointment.

People are reluctant to go around him, lest they are accused of queue-jumping. You check the time.

Eventually, you make it into the building and the security guard or whoever barely even glances at the green SafetyEntry pass on your phone after all you went through to get it.

Welcome to the new normal, where the nasi lemak is $12.50 for free riders.

While the distribution of the TraceTogether tokens to the general public started last week, many of us are still relying on our phones for SafeEntry.

But despite all the information and advisories the Government has provided during the pandemic post-circuit breaker, it has neglected one critical area that affects every single one of us - SafeEntry check-in etiquette.

I'm here to fill that gap with a few tips.

You're welcome.

Don't block the QR code

When scanning the QR code, don't stand right in front of it, preventing others from scanning the code. Stand to the side so that someone else can have access.

Look for another QR code

If someone is blocking the QR code, there is usually another one nearby. Open your eyes.

Don't block the way

If you need to stop or slow down to fiddle with your phone or for whatever reason, move to the side and let others pass.

This is a generally good tip to live by even when there isn't a pandemic.


This may be slightly controversial, but if someone fails to follow the previous tip, go around that person, especially in a fast-moving line.

Don't think you're being nice by stopping and waiting for that person. You're just making all the people behind you suffer because of that one blur king.

Use the SingPass app's SafeEntry Check-in feature

Skip the QR code and check in by simply selecting the location on the list. (Not every place may be listed though.) The SingPass app is not just for retrieving your O-level results, you know.

Use the TraceTogether app's Favourites feature

If it's a place you visit frequently, just add it to the Favourites list and you don't need to scan the damn QR code again.

If everyone follows these tips, we can have a little less annoying pandemic.

Got more tips of your own? Send them to me at the e-mail below.