“An initial 308 modern jeepneys hit the road again beginning June 22, as prescribed by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board via its Memorandum Circular No. 2020-023, released on June 19. The 308 units will cover 15 routes in Metro Manila.
“In addition, more routes were opened within the past week—nine on June 24 and 10 on June 26—to serve other parts of Metro Manila that are adjacent to provinces.
“‘The resumption of PUJ operations in 15 routes in Metro Manila is part of our calibrated response to restore mass transportation in Metro Manila and in the adjacent provinces as we transition into new normal, taking into consideration the strict health protocols being enforced to prevent the spread of COVID-19,’ said Martin Delgra III, LTFRB chairman.
“Both air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned modern jeepneys have a base fare of P11 for the first 4km. Each succeeding kilometer will add P1.50 for non-air-conditioned units and P1.80 for air-conditioned ones.”
For a list of all available routes, click here.
“Commuters coming in from areas just outside Metro Manila can now make use of MetroExpress’ P2P shuttle services. The company has reopened routes that begin in the cities of Bacoor and Dasmariñas and stretch out to Makati and Alabang. There are also trips coming from Taguig to Makati or Ortigas.
“For the full schedule for each route, you can refer to the company’s Facebook post here. The information includes the updated trips traveling on weekdays, weekends, and holidays.”
“The affected weekends will be on July 4 to 5, August 8 to 9, August 21 to 23, and September 12 to 13. There’s good reason for the halt in operations, though, as the line is fast-tracking rail replacement works to meet the project’s September 2020 deadline. Sumitomo-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, which is handling the train line’s rehabilitation, will also take the downtime as an opportunity to perform maintenance work on electricals and other subsystems.
“The announcement added that those who will be affected by the suspensions may turn to the DOTr’s and the LTFRB’s bus augmentation program.”
“Recently, some posts have circulated social media showing how bike lanes in several areas in the metro are being misused by motorists as overtaking lanes—or worse, as parking spaces.
“According to a report by the Philippine Star, Joint Task Force COVID Shield commander Police Lt. General Guillermo Eleazar raised the issue in a recent statement and reminded the Philippine National Police–Highway Patrol Group as well as local security personnel to include the checking of bicycle lanes in their regular patrols.
“‘The use of bicycles as a mode of transportation is already beginning to become popular. We call on the motorists to get used to this by starting to respect the intended users of bicycle lanes,’ Eleazar said. ‘The keyword here is respect. Just like drivers of trucks, buses, and private vehicles, bicycle riders also have the right to use the roads especially if they are already allowed to go through bicycle lanes that have already been designated by the local government units.’”
“During an online hearing of the House Committee on Metro Manila Development, Chairman Delgra of the LTFRB said that UV Express units and traditional jeepneys will be allowed to resume operations starting this coming week, after several representatives asked the agency to provide a specific timeline as to when other modes of public transportation will be allowed to ply the city streets once again.
“‘Next week po, for both UV and traditional jeepneys po,’ Delgra said. ‘For Monday, meron pong bubuksan na mga UV (routes) and then followed by the traditional jeepney.’
“Delgra, however, did not specify the exact day on which jeepneys would resume operations. He then explained how the LTFRB followed a hierarchy of transport that prioritizes PUVs that have higher passenger capacity. He added that these vehicles were also prioritized because of the fleet operators’ capabilities to manage their vehicles and personnel better.”
“Cases of order cancellations and bogus orders have long been problems for delivery service providers and riders. This is one of the reasons why the House Bill No. 6958 or the Food and Grocery Delivery Services Protection Act was recently filed in Congress.
“This has yet to be passed into law as of this writing, though, which means that there’s a good chance that these issues continue to prevail without violators being penalized. Grab Philippines’ new system, however, just might be able to mitigate the situation at least for the meantime.
“‘Moving towards August, we will be implementing this model whereby pagdating sa restaurant, the [GrabFood] delivery partner will not need to pay any cash,” said company spokesperson and lawyer Nicka Hosaka during an online hearing of the House Committee on Trade and Industry. ‘He will simply pick up the order, and the restaurant will receive the payment straight via the app.’
“Once the rider receives the payment from the customer and completes the transaction, Grab will simply deduct from the rider’s ‘digital wallet’ the amount that he collected for the transaction. This digital wallet is where Grab reimburses its riders for bogus or canceled orders, and this new system is somehow like a reverse process of the company’s reimbursement policy that it has in place.
“Do note that Hosaka clarified in a text message to CNN Philippines that this new model will not immediately cover all Grab merchants and partner restaurants by August.”
“The LTFRB has now confirmed that a total of 980 UV Express units will be deployed to cover 47 routes beginning on Monday, June 29.
“The announcement was made via LTFRB Memorandum Circular No. 2020-025, which also provides the guidelines for UV Express operations under general community quarantine (GCQ). Of note, the routes are strictly terminal-to-terminal, with no passenger pickup or drop-off in between. Units may not traverse EDSA and Commonwealth Avenue except to cross, and the fare rate shall remain at P2 per kilometer.
“Everyone on board shall wear masks at all times; in addition, drivers and conductors are required to wear gloves. For purposes of contact tracing, all passengers shall fill out a Passenger Contact Form, which must be surrendered via the provided drop box prior to alighting from the UV Express unit. They are likewise advised to take note of the unit’s plate number, as well as their date and time of boarding. Payment of exact fare is also encouraged.
“As for the return to operations of traditional jeepneys, Chairman Delgra of the LTFRB said that the agency ‘is not discounting the possibility of deploying additional modern and traditional jeepneys later to augment the operations of the 980 UV Express depending on passenger demand.’”
For a list of all available routes and the corresponding fares, click here.