These are hard times for all of us. Whether we commute or we drive our own cars, these are hard times, financially. Gas prices are up. Fare toll increases. And we’re hoping things will lighten up a bit, at least for our pockets.
When LTRFB decided to allow cab drivers to increase their usual fare of Php30 to Php40, not to mention that every patak was 3.50, I was worried what that will do to my daily expenses. One, I go to work by cabs everyday. The amount I’ll spend if I commute (four rides from my place to work) is just about the same, with a difference of only 15 pesos or so. That will save me the hassle of commuting and uncontrollably sweating beside someone inside a jeepney. Did it hurt me on a daily basis? Yes. What usually was 62.50 from my place to work is now 89.00. That’s 27 pesos more than what I pay everyday. Cab drivers may complain all they want about increase in gas prices, but as an argument, can I also just say, don’t they think that also affects us? What makes them more “right” to want an increase when in fact, we’re also as directly affected by this as they are! So when cab drivers reason out to me that they need “dagdag” because the gas has become expensive, I go ballistic. “Kahit po kami affected din niyan.” Should we demand an increase in our pay?
But I know people would say, you’re getting paid more than them, give it to them. Fine, but I expect cab drivers to be decent enough to follow the law, since the law already worked on their behalf. But sometimes, we can’t help it when drivers are just plain abusive. Take my experience:
I took a cab from my place going to my office in Roxas about two weeks ago. I was hoping I’d get a cab that doesn’t charge 40, but the odds are against me and true enough, the cab I rode in had a “new” meter machine. When I got to my office, I asked for a receipt. (Side note: Shouldn’t it be AUTOMATIC that drivers will just print our receipts in the same way cashiers print receipts for customers?) I got my receipt and paid 82.00.
I only noticed some irregularities about my receipt when I was already inside the office. I looked at it and saw that it had no TIN number, it was not registered to LTFRB as I usually see in other receipts, PLUS, at the back of the receipt there was written, “Available in Do-it-yourself (DIY) and Electrical Shops”. Safe to say, I think the meter machine was just purchased from a shop. Furthermore, the date that was printed on the meter was “Oct. 24, 2009”. That was my giveaway that this was not registered to the LTFRB, hence, it had no right to charge passengers 40 as mandated by law, and clearly, was taking advantage.
So yes, I’m upset about this. First of all, these drivers and their operators are clearly taking advantage of the situation. Most passengers I’d assume are not as observant like me when it comes to these things. I take this very seriously because I’m a law-abiding citizen and just like every law-abiding citizen, I want to see my money spent on the right things. Since this practice is illegal, I don’t want to take part in it and I want the law to work on our side, as well. Etong mga taxi drivers na to, ang bilis bilis nilang mag-react sa gas increase, pero abusado din naman pala!
If you notice in the picture below, I’ve encircled the difference between a receipt that was issued by my erring cab driver, and the one which I think is correct because it showed the TIN number and the LTFRB’s name. I hope this gets some action. What have I done since then? Well, I’ve reported this to the DOTC’s online complaint form. I plan on following it up until I see something done about this.
So yes, I’m a law-abiding citizen, and I’m every erring cab driver’s worst enemy.