Jeepney driver showered by sympathy online after P15 minimum fare request

March 22, 2022 - 6:57 PM
Jeepney drivers on June 25, 2020 check their engine at Tandang Sora Jeepney Terminal in Quezon City. (The STAR/Michael Varcas)

A jeepney driver who was asking for P15 minimum fare on a voluntary basis tugged some heartstrings on social media.

GMA News uploaded a photo of the driver on Facebook on March 18.

It showed the driver behind the wheel of a jeepney and a sign that reads: “15 pesos minimum, voluntary kung sino po may gusto.”

The driver was plying the Sta. Barbara-Dagupan, Pangasinan route when a passenger spotted the sign last March 15.

The photo was first uploaded by online user Ella Garcia.

GMA News’ post, meanwhile, had since circulated on Facebook, Twitter and on the subreddit r/Philippines.

It has so far earned 269,000 reactions, 7,900 comments and 27,000 shares on Facebook alone.

In the comments section, most Facebook users expressed sympathy to the driver. Others also lauded commuters who would voluntarily give extra fare to him.

“I salute to those commuters who understand the situation of a driver,” one Facebook user said.

“My heartfelt sympathy to all jeepney drivers…We are all hit by this current crisis,” another online user commented.

Some Reddit users, on the other hand, shared how they chip in more fare when riding public transport.

“Hindi lahat pero ako sinosobrahan ko ng five pesos bayad ko kahit papaano makatulong lang sa kanila,” one Reddit user said.

“Sumasakay rin ako ng tricycle and even if malaki singil nila I don’t haggle anymore kung reasonable naman,” another user said.

One Reddit user raised a problem on low minimum wage, making it hard for some Filipinos to afford higher fares in the country.

“No one’s defending labor force. 10-20 years stagnant ang sweldo, nagtaasan na lahat ng pagkain at pamasahe. The government is doing nothing against capitalist employers,” the user said. 

One Twitter user also criticized the country’s transport sector.

“Abono nalang lagi para sa bayan. Imagine the three years of hell our jeepney drivers must have been through. We are NOT taking care of our transport sector,” one Twitter user said.

Transport groups have been calling on the government to implement a fare hike and provide fuel subsidies amid the skyrocketing fuel prices and the economic crisis brought by the still ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, however, has yet to make a decision about it.

In a previous statement, the LTFRB said that the petitions for a jeepney fare hike from the current P9 to P10 have already been submitted for a resolution.

Reports said the LTFRB heard the petitions today.

However, as of writing, there is still no decision about the matter.

Fuel prices have risen across many countries in Europe, Africa and Asia due to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

Last Monday, March 21, oil companies announced a temporary rollback in the prices of their petroleum products.

The new average prices as of March 22 are as follows:

  • P45 for a liter of diesel
  • P45 for gasoline
  • P55 for kerosene