Public assured: No LRT fare increase

The LRTA also cannot relate the projected timeline for when the sought increase will be effective

The management of the Light Rail Transit Authority assured commuters on Thursday that there will be no immediate fare increases in Metro Manila’s overhead railway systems — at least for now — as petitions for tariff adjustments are yet to be approved.

LRTA administrator Hernando Cabrera said the pending petitions for Light Rail Transit Lines 1 and 2 still need to go through a stringent and “lengthy process of approval” by the regulators.

“We won’t increase tomorrow, we won’t increase next, or even next month. This will go through a long process and we will have to evaluate all factors when it comes to fare adjustment,” Cabrera said.

He added that the Light Rail Manila Corp. — which operates the LRT Line 1 — seeks a flat P16 boarding fee and P1.5 per kilometer ride. However, he refused to disclose the proposed fare surge.

According to Cabrera, the LRTA also cannot relate the projected timeline for when the sought increase will be effective.

“Additional revenues will be used to rehabilitate and upgrade (the train system). The LRT 2 system is 20 years old, we have to upgrade a lot of things,” he said, signifying that fare increase, although burdensome to customers, will translate to better service.

To recall, the fare matrix for LRT Lines 1 and 2 were last adjusted in 2015.

Previously the Department of Transportation was the only one responsible for approving any train fare increase, but since LRT-1 is now privately operated, it needs to go through the Rail Regulatory Unit.
Thus, when a private operator pursues a fare increase, it needs to go through the approval of at least three government agencies.

Once petitions are filed, it needs to undergo the scrutiny of the Rail Regulatory Unit, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board and the DoTr.

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