Are you part of the daily commuting public? Do you rely on the train lines MRT and / or LRT to get home or to work every day or bring your kids to school? Read up on the latest news regarding approved new fare hikes for the MRT & LRT.
New rates for the MRT & LRT lines have been approved by the government, to take effect early March.
According to the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), MRT & LRT passengers will need to pay an additional P1, serving as boarding fee. They will also be charged an additional P1 for every kilometer.
For single journey tickets, only P15, P20 and P30 denominations will be sold. The cost of the ticket would be equivalent to the corresponding distance covered. The denominations were finalized in the hopes of significantly shortening the queues for tickets and ensuring faster giving of change.
Passengers buying stored value tickets will be able to enjoy the full ticket value.
Currently, the highest MRT fare is P15, whereas the highest LRT fare is P20. Once the new fares are implemented, the highest MRT fare will be P28, and for the LRT, P31.
The DOTC claims that the fare increase will pave the way for “better services for commuters,” including speedier trains, shorter waiting times and cleaner facilities. As per DOTC, these improvements will be visible even prior to the effectivity date of the fare increase.
Said DOTC Undersecretary Dante Velasco, “The speed (of the trains) will be increased from 40 kilometer per hour to 60 kilometer per hour," said Velasco. “This will require… aayusin yung (upgrade of) rail tracks."
Aside from these, the government also aims to decrease state subsidies in order to fund the MRT & LRT operations. DOTC further states that raising the MRT & LRT fare could save around P1.2 billion a year.
Earlier today, a group of militant teens marched to Mendiola to demonstrate their protest against the planned MRT & LRT fare increase, some groups performing a signature campaign. They threatened to hold more frequent demonstrations should Malacañang not put an end to the fare hike.
Given the reactions to the impending fare increase, the DOTC is reassuring the public that there will still be a public hearing, so the new fares may still change before implementation.
An estimated 500,000 use the MRT everyday, same with LRT 1. LRT 2, on the other hand, has about 250,000 passengers daily.