Pelayo: The end of overcharging among trikes

THE long wait is over. The much awaited official fare matrix copies have been distributed to some three thousand public tricycle units in Angeles City. The fare matrix aims to end the misunderstanding, quarrels and possible road rage between the trike drivers and passengers. Ordinance #338 or the Fare Matrix Ordinance has been conceptualized to serve as a guide to commuters and tricycle drivers about the standardization and regulation of transpo flat rates of the public three-wheeled vehicles in the city. Its intention according to primary author, Councilor Amos Rivera, is to ensure that the riding public are being charged accurately and fairly.

I have been informed that this move may be the first of its kind in the country; giving importance to the passengers, both locals and foreigners, making sure they are not being taken advantage of some greedy tricycle drivers. A 25-peso flat rate for the first kilometer travelled, as explained by Rivera, is indicated on the matrix. Also, a point-to-point destination measured in kilometers is specified on the distributed printed copies with corresponding rates. For the succeeding distance travelled, an additional 10 pesos per kilometer will be charged to the passenger. Coun. Amos reiterates that the rates enlisted are good for one to two passengers only, and that rates are exclusive on the driver’s designated zone. The matrix also contains the hotlines that commuters may contact to address their complaints, reports, and suggestions.

The good news does not end there. A P5 discount is granted to senior citizens, students, persons with disability (PWD), and the solo parents. In Angeles City, all solo parents can avail a card from the city social welfare and development office (CSWDO).

This is just the first batch of the matrix distribution. The city government aims to distribute more than 10,000 copies to all registered passenger tricycle units in the city. When all legit trikes are covered, that means the authorities will have an easy task of determining the colorums. And this is the protection of the tricycle drivers in this ordinance apart from their protection against mean passengers.

The first batch was distributed in dense areas like Balibago and Sto. Rosario in this city. I just hope that trike drivers will regularly carry smaller bills to fairly change the bigger notes of passengers. It’s up to the passengers if they would be so kind to leave a tip or to take what’s on the matrix.

I also laud the city government for not allowing small and low sidecars anymore. Now, I can fit in comfortably without folding my knees and head when riding one in the city.