DOTC bares proposed fare hikes for LRT, MRT
The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has released its proposed fare adjustments for Metro Manila’s three elevated railway lines.
The new rates were practically a rehash of the proposal made two years ago, drawing renewed opposition from militant groups in a public consultation on Thursday.
The fares would increase by an average of P5 for an “average trip,” said Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) spokesperson Hernando Cabrera, based on what he called the “11+1 formula,” which means there would a boarding charge of P11 plus P1 for every kilometer traveled.
The proposed increase was aimed at reducing subsidies for LRT Lines 1 and 2 and Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT3) by P2.06 billion per year, which could translate into savings that the government could channel to other aspects of the economy, Cabrera said.
According to Cabrera, the P5 increase was determined based on a commuter’s typical trip, which covers an average of 8 km or seven to 10 stations. Only about 5 percent of the train riders make end-to-end trips, he noted.
Based on the matrix distributed during Thursday’s consultation, the maximum fare on the MRT3, for example, would go from the current P15 to P28 for an end-to-end trip from North Avenue to Taft.
LRT1 last raised its rates in 2003, while LRT2 and MRT3 have yet to adjust their rates since they started operations.
At least 10 groups, including the militant Anakpawis, Bayan Muna, Anti-Trapo and KMU, attended the proceedings and opposed the fare hike for their ‘’poor timing” and disregard for low-income earners who make up the majority of the riders. Miguel R. Camus