When to Use What Public Transport

Travelling around cities in the Philippines can be very confusing even to locals. How many times have we heard tourists taking cabs to get to a place which turns out to be just at the next corner? Or first-timers taking tricycles or pedicabs to get to another city? So to keep traveling blunders to a limit here’s a summary of short city travels.

But often we find ourselves travelling around cities alone. In such case we need to know where we’re going. Most first-timers travelling around cities often take confidence in taking cabs. But often (not always) cab drivers would take unsuspecting passengers around the locality (or even around the city) when actually the destination is just right at the next corner. So it’s vital to get an idea where one is going. How far is it? Five kilometers? How long to get to it? An hour? One may ask around; ask a traffic police or traffic aide, go to a barangay post, or call operator service. These are safe people to ask directions from when travelling around cities and will readily lend a hand. But don’t ask just anybody.

Get a handy map, too. A city atlas will help pinpoint a street or locality and the access roads leading to it. With this, one gets a better grasp of how to get there. If it’s more than 2 or 3 kilometers, it’s probably a jeepney ride. Farther destinations may need a bus ride or a combination of jeepney, bus and tricycle. The general rule is, buses are for highways, jeepneys for main roads and inner streets, tricycles are for streets and alleys inaccessible to jeepneys. Again, as one is travelling around cities, don’t hesitate to ask directions.

A cab is only advisable when one gets familiar with travelling around cities. Blindly trusting a cab to take us places we don’t have an inkling of is a pitfall. Check a route in the map and insist on taking that path. Cab drivers are known to offer “short-cuts” that later churn up the meter like crazy—though some drivers do care for passengers to get cheaper and shorter rides travelling around cities. It’s best to sit at the back where checking the atlas would be undetected by the driver and one doesn’t appear new in the territory.

So when travelling around cities just keep cool and know first where one’s going. Then the rest of the travel ought to be smooth sailing.

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