MANILA, Philippines – Three friends have gone viral upon posting their pictures of station hopping (MRT 3, that is) at all its 13 stops.
Genard De Guzman, Prinze Magallanes and Joshua Rayo decided to go on a spontaneous adventure while free rides are extended until June 30, and their post has garnered 23k amused reactions from netizens as of date.
“Sobrang nakakatuwa na in-extend yung libreng sakay hanggang June 30 kaya mas marami pang makakatipid sa pamasahe,” De Guzman said in his interview with the Manila Bulletin.
Other netizens have since taken on the challenge, posting their pictures using the hashtag #MRT3StationsChallenge.
However, De Guzman and all the other passengers who partook in the challenge noted that they did not take advantage of the free rides during rush hour, so as not to deprive slots from those who really need to use the public transportation.
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) rolled out the “Libreng Sakay” program on March 28 with the goal of easing the public’s financial burden amid the hikes in fuel and basic commodity prices.
Its run has since been extended until June 30, as the end of the Duterte administration officially closes.
As of writing, more than 15 million commuters have benefitted from the free rides, with an average of 315,000 daily passengers.
The revenue loss from the program’s run since March 28 to May 24 is at P286 million, and this extension could reach around P150-180 million.
The lost income will be taken from the allotted P7.1 billion subsidy funding in the General Appropriations Act.