Paid rides resume, Edsa buses down to 550
MANILA, Philippines — The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Tuesday said it reverted the number of buses at the Edsa Busway to 550 units, as paid rides resumed on New Year’s Day.
This was the original number of buses allowed to operate along the major thoroughfare before the government relaunched the “Libreng Sakay” or free ride program last December, the agency said.
Due to the expected increase in ridership, the LTFRB added 208 “rescue buses” during the Christmas season. Despite the buses being down to their original number, the LTFRB said it would continue to monitor passenger demand “to see whether the original 550 units are enough.”
Nevertheless the agency said Edsa bus consortiums must ensure the deployment of “at least a substantial number of units daily” to meet passenger demand at “any time of the day.”
Under a new fare matrix approved by the LTFRB, city buses are now allowed to collect a minimum fare of P15 per passenger.
A one-way ticket on an air-conditioned bus from Monumento in Caloocan City to the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX) now costs P75.50, based on the new fare guide after transport authorities terminated the free rides on the Edsa Busway system.
On Tuesday, the LTFRB urged bus operators at the Edsa Busway to acquire a copy of the new matrix from the agency’s technical division to ensure that passengers pay the correct fare.
The agency’s chair, Teofilo Guadiz III, also urged the public to report to its ground personnel cases of overcharging.
Also called the Edsa Carousel, the Edsa Busway runs the entire length of the beltway, considered Metro Manila’s major thoroughfare and also its most congested.
The service route has 19 stops including Roxas Boulevard, Taft Avenue, Ayala Avenue, Buendia, Ortigas Avenue, Quezon and North Avenues, and Balintawak.