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Fare hike of P1: Not enough for drivers, additional burden for commuters

By: Niña Mae C. Oliverio - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | October 06,2023 - 07:05 AM

Fare hike of P1: Not enough for drivers, additional burden for commuters

A photo of a traditional jeepney along N. Escario Street in Cebu City. | CDN File photo/Niña Mae Oliverio

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The P1 provisional jeepney fare hike is simply not enough, jeepney drivers in Cebu City said.

On Tuesday, October 3, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) approved the additional P1 on jeepney fares both for modern and traditional, effective October 8, Sunday.

This means that the minimum P12 fare for traditional jeepneys would be P13, while the P14 minimum fare for modern jeepneys would be P15.

READ: P1 provisional jeepney fare increase starting Oct. 8 gets LTFRB approval


With this, some drivers in Cebu said that the amount of increase is insufficient for them because of the soaring prices of fuel.

“Dili gyud na siya sapat unta sa driver unya wa man tay mahimo kay mao ma’y giaprobahan,” jeepney driver Joel Guardiario Apostol said.

fare hike

Joel Guardiario Apostol, 55, driver of a modern jeepney. | CDN File photo

Apostol, 55, driver of a modern jeepney, said that besides its impact on drivers, it would also affect the passengers.

“Ang pasahero ana, pwerte nang labara sa ulo, kontrahon nami (drivers) ana,” he said.

Apostol added that even if the P1 fare hike is already approved by the LTFRB, some commuters would complain and would say the fare is expensive.

He said that that is usually the complaint of the passengers even in the previous years.

He added that a P2 increase would be better, however, they could not do more about it because passengers might complain.

“Pero pagka-ngalan nga gitimbang na sa LTFRB nga increase nga di sad masakitan ang pasahero, mao nang one peso ang gihatag,” Apostol added.

As of now, Apostol said they are waiting for the fuel subsidy because it would be a big help for them amidst the increasing prices of fuel.

Moreover, Elias Abing, 39, driver of a traditional jeepney also said the P1 is not enough but if the LTFRB already approved it, they could not do anything about it.

If he were to suggest the additional amount for fare, he said it would be P5, but he said it would have dire effects on the riding public.

Passengers not in favor of fare hike

Meanwhile, some passengers said that the fare hike, though minimal by drivers’ standards,  would eventually affect them.

Jenny Bontia, 23, said that even if the increase in fare is only P1, it would still have an impact on her.

Bontia is a resident of Barangay Lahug and is about to start working in a business process outsourcing (BPO) company in Cebu City soon.

“Karon kay nimahal na ang paliton, so ang piso kay murag sakit sad. Dose baya sauna unya karon mo trise na (referring to the fare of traditional jeepneys),” Bontia said.

She added that she usually commutes more than two times a day, so it would really affect her budget.

Diane Rose Baynos, a 20-year-old student at one of the universities in Cebu City, said that the increase would cause a “financial strain” on both the drivers and commuters.

Baynos said that for now, since she has not “fully grasped its gravity,” she does not think it would have an impact on her.

“But for others who are very conscious with their expenditures, given today’s economic situation, it would inevitably add up to their burden,” she said.

Fuel subsidy

As of October 3, LTFRB said on their Facebook page that they recorded a total of 132,009 operators of public utility vehicle units (PUVs) who are qualified beneficiaries of the fuel subsidy.

“Samantala, 92,755 na yunit ng pampublikong sasakyan naman sa buong bansa ang nakatanggap na ng subsidiya na may katumbas na halaga na P605,186,000 sa ilalim ng Fuel Subsidy Program (FSP) ng Department of Transportation (DOTr) at LTFRB,” LTFRB said in its post.

According to LTFRB, the fuel subsidy aims to help PUV operators and drivers amidst the rising prices of fuels.

READ: DBM: P3 billion fuel subsidy up for distribution to drivers, operators

In an interview with LTFRB-7 Regional Director Eduardo Montealto Jr. on Thursday, he said the distribution of the fuel subsidy in Central Visayas started two weeks ago.

However, he did not specify the figures because the agency’s central office has the hold of it.

Montealto added that the operators are the ones who could receive the subsidy because the LTFRB does not have the list of its drivers.

He said some of the tourist transport operators already received their fuel subsidies.

Montealto also clarified that the drivers would not receive cash but fuel as a form of subsidy.

“Abi nila’g cash ang ilang bahin-bahinon. Kung kinsa’y mo-drive atong adlawa, mao to’y tubilan,” he said.

Montealto said traditional jeepneys could receive P6,500 worth of fuel, while modern jeepneys could receive P10,000 worth of fuel.

To those drivers who are yet to get their fuel subsidy, Montealto urged them to approach their operators.

The fare hike and fuel subsidy distribution are two of the biggest issues affecting the transportation sector these days.    /rcg


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TAGS: drivers, fare hike, fuel subsidy, LTFRB, modern jeepneys, traditional jeepneys

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