Jeepney 101

Jeepney is considered as one of the Philippines’ national symbols. Each said vehicle is usually air brush-painted with colorful designs and decorations, outwardly reflecting the diverse socio-cultural system of the country.

However, the first jeepneys weren’t all festive. Its history could be traced back in the 1940’s during the World War II where the original version was initially used as a military car accommodating a number of people. The remains of these vehicles were left by the Americans as the war subsided and was modified by the locals for public transportation.

The Jeepney Culture

The Philippine culture could not only be seen on the surface of these then military transportation. What happens inside the jeepney would tell you a lot more about the custom of bayanihan where people give each other a hand when needed.

One observable example is, as soon as you hand the fare, passengers would pass it on until it reaches the driver’s coin chest. If you have a change, passengers would receive it from the driver then pass it on until it reaches you back. At times when the driver forgets about the change, other passengers, even if you don’t know them, would remind the driver about it. These people seem to have a given understanding about how this custom works.

Accessible and cheap

Among the vehicles in the Philippines, jeepney, unlike taxi and tricycle, are accessible both in rural and urban areas. Here in Baguio, some jeepneys have cut-off until 9 pm whereas others rove until 12 midnight or even 24-hours straight.

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Monol students riding a jeepney on their way to an outdoor activity

Monol is located along Tacay Road, Pinsao Proper, a 10-15 minutes ride from town. Both jeepneys and taxis traverse just in front of the academy. The practical thing about jeepney is being able to arrive in town for only 8.50 pesos, around four times cheaper than the flag down rate of taxi. However, unlike taxi, the jeepney has certain routes so if you opt to ride one, knowing the destinations where jeepneys would travel would help a lot (and save you bucks!).

**featured image from http://www.anistransport.com

 

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