WATCH: The P2P bus ride experience
MANILA, Philippines – Riding buses has been part of Filipinos’ daily lives, but the point to point (P2P) bus service launched in end-2015 brings a level of comfort and convenience not usually associated with commuting around the metro.
From only 3 routes in its initial launch, the P2P service has since expanded, with 3 operators now plying routes that transport passengers into the central business districts. A bus ride costs nearly twice as much as ordinary city buses, but to its patrons, the higher cost is justified by the amenities offered by the P2P buses.
It was my first time to ride a P2P bus operated by Froehlich Tours, plying the route from Trinoma Mall in Quezon City to Glorietta 5 in Makati City, about 14 kilometers away.
As a first timer, I had a good experience on the bus ride. The driver and conductor approached me as I was looking for the terminal, asking me where I was headed.
Most of the passengers on the bus were office workers and senior citizens, and it’s easy to see why they patronize the service. The P2P bus promises to leave the station on time, and makes no stops between station and destination. Bus operators say this cuts down travel time by around 20 to 30 minutes. (READ: Double decker bus dry run: 'Preview' of modern bus system)
Senior citizens will also have a comfortable time in the bus. Seats are guaranteed, and this particular bus I rode was outfitted with leather seats. The air-conditioning was just at the right temperature to make everyone feel relaxed.
It feels safe inside the bus knowing that there are closed-circuit television cameras. Everything is monitored, which is why it felt like even if someone fell asleep during the trip, he wouldn't have to worry about things being stolen.
The trip from Quezon City to Makati City lasted more than an hour because of the traffic, but the entertainment system in the bus helped pass away the time and made the long trip more bearable.
And since the bus does not stop anywhere other than its intended destination, the restroom in the bus is a source of relief for those who feel the need to visit the lavatory.
The P2P bus is truly commuter-friendly, and provides a different riding experience that could hopefully become the model for future innovations in Philippine transportation. – Rappler.com
Alanis Banzon is a Rappler intern.