Practical Life in Manila


Transport in Manila


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Public Transportation

Manila is well connected by road, rail and air.

Train

Railway transport in Manila is a rapid transit or metro system. Trains run from around 5:30 am to 11 pm. They are the fastest way to travel around Manila but there are a lot of complaints due to frequent stoppages and breakdowns. Rush hour (6am-9am and 4pm-8pm) can create crowded situations and summer travel can offer sweltering conditions.

Lines

  • Manila Light Rail Transit System Line 1 (LRT-1 or Yellow Line) - the first metro line in Manila. The line runs in a north-south direction from Baclaran to Monumento then runs in an east-west direction from Monumento to North Avenue. It has 20 stations on 19.65 kilometers of line.
  • Manila Light Rail Transit System Line 2 (LRT-2 or Purple Line) - a line generally running in the east-west direction of Manila. It has 11 stations on 13.8 kilometers of line. It is the least busy among the three rapid transit lines.
  • Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3 or Blue Line) - a single line that runs in the general direction along the north and south lanes of Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA). It has 13 stations on 16.9 kilometers of line. The Araneta-Cubao station serves as an interchange between MRT-3 and LRT-2. The Taft Avenue station serves as an interchange between MRT-3 and LRT-1.

Tickets

Tickets are sold at staffed ticket offices and through ticket machines. Ticket machines accept bills and coins. An automated fare collection system using plastic magnetic tickets is employed in all lines. Tickets are inserted face-up into the slot on the turnstile then removed from the top. A single journey ticket will be retained at the exit gate.

Single journey tickets

Single journey tickets cost between PHP 15 to PHP 30 per ride on the LRT-1 and LRT-2 lines. On the MRT-3 line, single journey tickets cost between PHP 13 to PHP 28. Single journey tickets are only valid for a one-way ride from your station of origin to your station of destination. These tickets are valid only on the date of purchase.

Stored value tickets

Stored value tickets are sold with a pre-loaded amount (PHP 100) and are valid for multiple rides. These tickets are valid for three to six months from date of purchase.

Beep cards

A beep card is a reloadable contactless smart card that can be used in all lines. There is a single journey card costing around PHP 12 to PHP 30. The stored value card costs PHP 20 for the card alone. It has a maximum load limit of PHP 10,000 and is valid for four years from the date of purchase. Reloading of beep cards is done at all LRT and MRT stations but will then be expanded to convenience stores and other shops that will participate in the system. Self-service recharge machines are also available on train stations to reload the card.

Plane

Manila is one of the most served destinations in the world when it comes to flights. The airport code for Manila's airport is MNL.

NAIA

Ninoy Aquino International Airport, more commonly known as NAIA, is the only airport serving Manila and its surrounding metropolitan areas.

NAIA has four terminals:

  • Terminal 1 - serves most international flights
  • Terminal 2 - serves domestic and international flights for the country's flag carrier, Philippine Airlines
  • Terminal 3 - serves international flights not accommodated in Terminal 1. This is currently the newest and biggest terminal.
  • Terminal 4 - serves domestic flights

Transport to/from Airport

Trains: Passengers can take the MRT-3 and disembark at the EDSA-Taft MRT station.
Shuttle: There is an airport shuttle terminal located beside the EDSA-Taft MRT station. There is also an airport shuttle service to move to different airport terminals.
Drive: Passengers using private cars can use the route outlined below:

Taxi: A taxi from the airport to central Manila will cost around PHP 250 to PHP 350. Take only official, metered or pre-booked taxis. Yellow airport taxis charge a much higher rate (PHP 70 flag down rate and PHP 4 for every 300 meters thereafter). You may also use other services such as Grab and Uber which tend to be more expensive but are safer options.

Taxi

Taxis are easily available to hail on the street as well as in tourist areas, transport hubs or hotels. It is also possible to book cabs in advance by calling.

Taxi Companies

  • MGE Transport: 02 363 6096
  • Avis Taxi: 02 831 2701
  • Dollar Taxi: 02 921 2383
  • 24/7 Taxi: 02 642 3525
  • EMP Transport: 02 293 5930
  • Grab
  • Uber

Fares & Tipping

There is a flag-down rate of PHP 40. Succeeding charges will be PHP3.50 for every 300 meters. Check that the meter is running once you get in. Do not accept rides from cab drivers who give you a fixed rate or refuse to turn the meter on.

Tipping is not mandatory but may be expected. Tip what you feel is appropriate.

Car Hire

Car rentals allow visitors to see the hidden parts of Manila. Rentals can be arranged by calling or booking online. Compare deals to find one that works for you.

Car rentals may require you to be over 21 years old. All renters must have a valid driver's license, vehicle registration, and passport to drive. A foreign driver's license is valid for a maximum of 90 days from the date of arrival in the Philippines. An international driving permit (IDP) will be required of a renter holding a non-English license.

Driving Conditions

Driving is on the right side of the road. This can be confusing for foreign drivers so be mentally prepared and be careful.

Manila can be difficult to navigate. Heavy traffic can be experienced during rush hours (6am-9am and 4pm-8pm). The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority offers traffic updates throughout Manila.

Manila employs the number coding scheme during weekdays to ease traffic congestion. Vehicles with plate numbers ending with the following digits are prohibited on all roads from 7am to 7pm:

  • Plate number ending with 1 and 2 - Monday
  • Plate number ending with 3 and 4 - Tuesday
  • Plate number ending with 5 and 6 - Wednesday
  • Plate number ending with 7 and 8 - Thursday
  • Plate number ending with 9 and 0 - Friday
Manila Map: Google Maps
Philippines Map: http://www.mapsofworld.com/philippines/

Update 9/06/2016





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