LRTA: 20% discount will be given to students if Libreng Sakay ends Nov. 5
MANILA, Philippines — The free train rides for students in the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 2 would last only up to November 5, unless an extension of the program is approved, LRT Authority (LRTA) Administrator Hernando Cabrera said on Wednesday.
But if no extension of the Libreng Sakay program for LRT Line 2 is approved, Cabrera assured students they could avail of the 20 percent discount on LRT fares.
“Our free ride program for our students would only last until November 5. So far, we have not received any instruction for an extension. We are awaiting that, but we are ready; anytime they say that we would extend the program, we are ready to implement that,” Cabrera said in Filipino during the Laging Handa public briefing.
“Nonetheless, even if the program ends this coming November 5, the following days, we will implement what we call the Student Fare Discount. Because under the law, they are entitled to a 20% discount,” he added.
Cabrera noted that the 20 percent discount would take effect by November 6 if the program is not extended.
The LRT Line 2 is crucial to students as the rail system crosses the central portion of Metro Manila — starting from Antipolo City in Rizal, toward Cubao in Quezon City, and ending at the Claro M. Recto Avenue in Manila, which traverses several schools.
Several schools in Manila’s university belt, like the Centro Escolar, San Beda University, University of the East (UE), San Sebastian College, and Far Eastern University, are accessible through the Recto and Legarda stations.
Other key educational institutions like the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, the UE Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center, and the Technological Institute of the Philippines (TIP) can be located near the Pureza, V. Mapa, Gilmore, Cubao, Anonas, and Katipunan Stations.
According to the LRTA official, at least 992,000 students have benefitted from the Libreng Sakay Program, which means that based on their average of 30,000 students riding LRT-2 per day, they have already breached the one million mark on Wednesday.
“As of yesterday, we have provided free rides for at least 992,000 of our students, that’s as of yesterday. But on the daily average, we have around 30,000 students every day availing of the free rides for our students,” Cabrera said.
“So, if you summed it all up, combined yesterday’s tally with today based on our daily average, we have already reached the one million mark. So, we have one million beneficiaries of the free train rides for our students,” he added.
Cabrera admitted that they are on guard against people who might take advantage of the Libreng Sakay by posing as students — significantly since ridership has increased from 10,000 students to 38,000 on Tuesday, which is the highest since August.
However, he cast doubt into such fears that total ridership of the train system has increased with the relaxation of COVID-19 protocols.
“So far, we have not received reports of such cases, but we monitor these because our data showed that when we started, our free ride program benefited only 10,000 students. But it has reached higher numbers, the highest of which was recorded yesterday, at 38,000 actually,” he said.
“So, we checked the data and compared if the free ride beneficiaries increased, but our total ridership did not. So, we saw that in total, the ridership of Line 2 increased, so there are no lapses — the total passengers daily increased, so the students availing the free ride program also increased,” he added.
Last August 16, LRTA said they expect two million students to benefit from the Libreng Sakay program as around 80 universities, colleges, and schools are located near LRT-2 stations. With reports from Irish Lorraine Perez, INQUIRER.net trainee
Over 2 million students to benefit from LRT-2 ‘Libreng Sakay’
Free rides for students only at LRT 2 so far – DOTr
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