Malaysians who have been gritting their teeth trying to eat during the lockdown in recent weeks will now have more time to chomp.
McDonald’s, Starbucks, and more food establishments quickly announced their extended opening hours last night after the government gave the OK to allow restaurants to operate for two more hours. The move came as thousands vented their frustrations online over difficulties ordering food since eateries were previously only allowed to open until 8pm, with some taking last orders around dinnertime at 7:30pm.
“Fill your tummies with our drive-thru or takeaways from 9am to 10pm every day. Use McDelivery from 8am to 9:30pm (last order), ” McDonald’s announced yesterday.
Coffee chains Feeka Coffee Roasters and Starbucks also updated their operating hours. The American coffee chain changed its details on the Grab food app, stating that it was accepting final orders at 9:30pm. Feeka edited details on their Instagram page, stating that they were opening from 8am to 10pm.
Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced the new opening hours during his daily COVID-19 address yesterday. He also said that the second lockdown, which currently covers all but Sarawak, would be extended for two more weeks until Feb. 4 for six states and three territories Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, and Labuan.
Under the Movement Control Order, eateries can only serve takeaways and stick to the legal opening hours.
Frustrations among Malaysians earlier led to the trending hashtag #SiBodohDengarSini (Listen here, you idiot) that started from a woman lashing out at someone who was rubbishing complaints that restrictive restaurant hours were affecting food delivery services.
“If you don’t order your dinner by 6pm during the MCO, you’ll only have instant noodles to eat,” @lavhqeeen__ said.
“Hungry Malaysians may cause the government to fall,” ‘@Farhanazahan wrote.
Food delivery companies Grab and Foodpanda said they will adjust their services to accommodate the latest opening hours but recommend that customers place their last orders by 9.20pm.
“For GrabFood, all cities will operate until 10PM. Last order at 9:20PM,” Grab said.
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This article, McDonalds, Starbucks, and more extend opening hours after government gives OK, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company.