Determining how much exactly the fares will increase as “provisionally” approved by the LRTA could be a little tricky. A Newsbreak article simplified the adjustments, which government hopes to implement starting March 1, by using averages for the three light rail systems – LRT 1, LRT 2, and MRT.
The second column in the table below shows the average distance that a commuter usually travels (based on data from the DOTC). The proposed fare, in the fourth column, is the new P11-boarding fee approved by the LRTA plus the average trip length (with a proposed rate of P1 for every kilometer).
This simplified presentation, however, does not show the full and actual impact of the fare hike which can only be appreciated on a per station basis using the new fare matrix approved by the LRTA. Based on this new fare matrix, a train ride (single journey ticket) from LRT 1’s Baclaran station to Roosevelt will be 50 percent more expensive (from P20 to P30) while the fare from Baclaran to Tayuman will double (from P15 to P30). A train ride from LRT 2’s Recto station to Santolan will be 67 percent more expensive (P15 to P25) while the fare from Recto to Anonas will jump by 79 percent (P14 to P25).
No new fare matrix has been released yet for MRT although transportation officials said they will also apply the P15 (minimum) – P30 (maximum) fare structure used in LRT 1 and 2. This means that a train ride from MRT’s North Avenue station to Quezon Avenue will increase by 50 percent (P10 to P15) while the fare from North Avenue to Taft Avenue will double (P15 to P30). (Update: The fare matrix for MRT released by the DOTC shows that the maximum fare would be P25 from the current P15. The highest increase would be felt by commuters riding from North Avenue to Ortigas wherein the fare will increase from the current P11 to P20, or an 82 percent hike. See Table below for details.)
Based on the matrix, the biggest increase in real terms will be P15. So a worker or a student who regularly uses the train must shell out P30 more every day or P780 more every month (26 working days a month) to afford the train ride. The lowest increase is P3 which translate to a monthly increase of P156 in transportation cost for the regular train commuter.
The new fare rates will also make an LRT train ride more expensive than the average fare for ordinary and aircon buses contrary to claims by Malacanang. (See Table)