Random Thoughts

Taxis vs. tricycles

By Leonardo Micua

WE heard reports that the taxis will begin to operate in Dagupan and Pangasinan starting August 15 this year. If this is true, the commuters peeved by motorized tricycles that often overcharge their passengers to their destination, will rejoice.

Magkano ang ibabayad ninyo?” is the usual opening of a rude trike driver to a gullible rider, especially if the driver senses that the rider is new in the city. Imagine, a trike driver charging you as much as P80 to P100 from Traffic Post No. 1 on A.B. Fernandez Avenue to the city astrodome. Only in Dagupan! 

This is plain highway robbery! If their victim is a tourist, the tricycles are putting Dagupan in a bad light. The tourists may shun Dagupan next time, refusing to deal with discourteous and arrogant trike drivers again.   

There is no reason for the trike driver to overcharge even if the passenger is a stranger. The reasonable fare is specified on the matrix posted inside their unit’s sidecar for the passengers to see. 

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Prospective commuters need not worry about overcharging when using the rider-friendly taxis to be fielded soon by the Bonuan Transport Service Corporation. The cabs have meters calibrated by LTFRB with a specified flag down rate of may be P35 like in Baguio, which increases every after a kilometer of travel.

If the trike drivers don’t reform, passengers here would easily pick the taxi if given a choice on what to ride since they won’t be overcharged by the driver and would surely enjoy the ride because it is new and air-conditioned.   

Since the taxis’ motorcade around the city streets (coinciding with the launching of the PUV Modernization Program of LTFRTB) three weeks ago, many now look forward to see the presence of taxis in our streets.

Some plan to use a taxi that would bring them to Bolinao which they think is safer and more convenient than slow-moving mini-buses that wait for passengers to fill the seats.   

And since taxis were already given by LTFRB the provisional authority to operate in support of PUV modernization program, there should be no reason for the government to delay their operations here a day longer. 

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I am not against the tricycles but the taxis appear as the better alternative especially when the government finally bans them from the national highways.

Remember that our roads in Dagupan are not getting wider but narrower because car owners park their cars in front of their stores even if they know that it is illegal. 

Have you noticed that there is hardly any space anymore in Dagupan’s narrow streets because the tricycles park on the streets literally making the streets their terminal waiting for passengers?

If mayors are given by DILG within 60 days to clear all roads of vendors and unwanted structures, what can be done about the tricycles that appropriated parts of the streets as terminals?     

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In the 18th Congress, our very own 4th District Rep. Christopher de Venecia shines slowly following the footsteps taken earlier in that chamber by his famous parents, former Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. and former Congresswoman Gina de Venecia.

Congressman Toff was again designated as deputy majority floor leader, a post he held in the 17th Congress rarely given to a first termer congressman. As deputy majority floor leader, he returned as chair of the committee on rules.   

In his post to friends using his social media account, Congressman Toff wrote: “Happy to be serving directly under our newly elected majority floor leader Martin Romualdez as well as Speaker Peter Cayetano.” 

Toff was formerly assistant majority floor leader under the leadership of one of his mentors in the field, the brilliant Congressman Rudy Fariñas of Ilocos Norte from whom he learned the ropes as chair of the committee on rules. 

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