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Archive for the ‘Transportation’ Category

Let’s Go for a Ride

Posted by BCS on September 28, 2008

A Mitsubishi Adventure utilized as a Mega Taxi

A Mitsubishi Adventure utilized as a Mega Taxi

View of the interior of an AUV Mega Taxi

View of the interior of an AUV Mega Taxi

As their “proper name” indicates, Mega Taxis (or FXs as they are popularly called now) were originally intended to serve the public as metered taxis. However, some time in the late 90s, someone had the brilliant idea of operating these public utility vehicles (PUV) as some sort of “higher-class” jeepneys.

At the onset of their new found business venture, the operators and/or drivers of these PUVs adapted the routes of jeepneys along the major thoroughfares of Metro Manila. Along with that, they imposed a minimum fare of P5.00 per person which has since rendered their meters useless.

The term “FX”, by the way, is derived from the name of Toyota’s successful brand of Asian Utility Vehicles (AUV), the Tamaraw FX which, at the time, were the most popular, if not, the only ones to be utilized as Mega Taxis. Nowadays, even after the introduction of various other AUV brands being used as Mega Taxis (e.g., Isuzu Crosswind, Mitsubishi Adventure, and the Tamaraw FX’s successor—the Toyota Revo), the term FX remains firmly attached to this mode of public transport.

The minimum fare for FXs is now set at 15 pesos, and increases at 5-peso incremements depending on the distance of the trip.

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Kanlaon Jeepney Terminal

Posted by BCS on September 20, 2008

kanlaon jeepney terminal

kanlaon jeepney terminal

This is the “jeepney terminal” on Kanlaon Street I mentioned in yesterday’s post.

This “terminal” is rather unique, but not for any physical qualities since it has none (as you can see in the picture). There’s no structure to talk about except for the waiting shed it has claimed as its shelter (plus an old wooden table) and the portion of the street that it has claimed as its garage. But for everyone’s information, especially for those who are not familiar with these things, this is rather typical for most, if not all so-called jeepney terminals.

The uniqueness I’m talking about comes from the way it’s being operated. And here’s how…

Before you get on the awaiting jeepney, you have to first approach the “cashier” (the person behind the table) and pay your fare. You will then be given a color-coded chopstick which will serve as your ticket. You then proceed to the awaiting jeepney and hand your chopstick to the “caller”/”barker” standing by it. Then and only then will you be allowed to climb on the jeepney.

However, the jeepney doesn’t leave unless it’s already full. So, depending on the time of day, you may have to sit there and wait for several minutes before the jeepney gets going.

By the way, the chopsticks being handed out have two colors, yellow and red… the significance of which (the colors that is) vary from time to time depending on the preference of the “cashier”. But basically, these colors are used by the people manning the terminal to determine how many people paid the discounted fare and how many paid the full fare.

Oh, I almost forgot, before the jeepney leaves, a certain amount of money (computed by the “cashier” based on the chopsticks collected) is handed over to the driver.

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