During my walks around Bogo City, I noticed that there were not as many buses. It was just after Typhoon Frank passed through and I thought that the storm had something to do with the reduced number of bus blasting through Bogo City.
In August, we went to Cebu by bus and found that the fares had gone up to 120 peso per one way ticket to or from Cebu City to Bogo City. This was a 100% increase in the fare up from 60p and explained the decrease in the number of buses. I knew bus fares were going up, I had thought the bus fare would rise to 80p per person. The coming price increase had been widely covered in the local press. When we learned that it had gone up to 120p we knew why we had been seeing fewer bus in Bogo City. Also, the bus we did see where usually less than 75% full.
I had noticed over the last couple of weeks, that there was a sudden increase in the number of bus zooming around Bogo City during my walks. Though the number of buses had not returned to level we saw before the increase, the partial rebound in the number of buses caused me to wonder if the bus lines cut their prices.
I wondered if the bus companies had lowered the price for bus fares. On Tuesday, we took a bus to Cebu City and found the fair to be 100p per person. The fares had been reduced. The reduction was less than impressive. If the bus lines want to see the people return, they need to go to 80p from and to Cebu to Bogo City. Even with this reduction, the buses have not been as full as they were. Our return trip to Bogo City found the bus less than half full!
There is nearly always and playful and pretty Filipina to be found around the Philippines. As this pretty lady caught my eye with her smiles and I snapped off a couple of pictures. Being typically shy, these photos were hard to get but I am a stubborn type and managed to get a picture or two.
The bus we rode was owned by Ceres Liner. In the past, all bus companies charged the same thing. Even though the long range bus companies had been approved to charge 1.00 peso per Km they were all charging only .80 peso as the competition had helped to keep the price lower than what was approved. After Jeepney drivers sought an increase the larger bus firms had agreed to charge the approved 1peso per kilometer. It appears when the rate doubled, Filipinos either stayed home or found other methods for travel.
The lower rate of .80p per person seems to have caused a rebound of the number of people taking the bus in Cebu. However, the number of riders has not been returned to the pre-hike cost of a fare. To accomplish this, the bus firms are going to have to reduce their fares down to 80p per kilometer. That may not fully restore the number of fare paying customers. Many people likely lost or quit their jobs when the price went up. With fares that high, many would find the cost to get to their jobs was more than they earned.
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