Weight not yet factored into bookings – Angkas

Loreben Tuquero

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Weight not yet factored into bookings – Angkas

Darren Langit

Angkas head of operations David Medrana says the 'weight safety check' feature is part of a data collection phase to 'study implementation for a safer ride for all'

MANILA, Philippines – Motorcycle ride-hailing firm Angkas made clarifications on Friday, January 10, regarding its new in-app “weight safety check” feature, saying a passenger’s weight is not factored into bookings – at least not yet.

In a recent update of the app, Angkas asks users to provide their weight range, saying government guidelines require the provider to ensure that small bikers with small bikes do not get paired with passengers they may not be able to ferry.

The guidelines for the motorcycle taxi pilot run stipulate that participating riders must observe maximum payload of the motorcycle.

Why it matters: If a passenger’s weight will significantly lessen the number of motorcycle taxis available to ferry them, motorcycle taxi firms will have to ensure that there are enough riders to serve passengers of any weight.

However, the technical working group tasked to oversee the motorcycle taxi pilot run also imposed a 10,000-biker cap for each provider for Metro Manila, and 3,000 for Metro Cebu.

In a statement, Angkas head of operations David Medrana said that the provision on weight was already referenced in passenger safety cards. In particular, the cards read: “Heavy passengers may be denied. We don’t judge, [but] safety above all else.”

“It’s all about safety,” Medrana said, adding that the weight check was based on discussions with the Department of Transportation when the initial motorcycle taxi pilot run started in June 2019.

Medrana then explained that Angkas is still in the data collection phase to “study implementation for a safer ride for all.”

“Eventually, our goal is to ensure all bookings match you with the most appropriate bike and biker. For now, this should not impact anything from before, and rest assured we are treating this sensitive data with the utmost care,” Medrana said. – Rappler.com

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Loreben Tuquero

Loreben Tuquero is a researcher-writer for Rappler. Before transferring to Rappler's Research team, she covered transportation, Quezon City, and the Department of the Interior and Local Government as a reporter. She graduated with a communication degree from the Ateneo de Manila University.