How To Ride A Jeepney In Cebu?

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Jeepneys are the national and most popular form of public transportation here in Cebu and in most islands of the Philippines. Its crowd seating capacity and fancy decorations have become a symbol of the Philippine culture and art. In fact, the jeepney became the national image of the Philippines in the 1964 New York World Fair.


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Are you new to the island and would want to experience the exciting, crowded jeepney ride?

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The first ride in a jeepney is considered as a life changing experience. It never gets boring, as the barker would always ask you to move – there is always space for one more.

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Here in Cebu, we have what we call as extensions, where passengers sit if the regular seats were already taken.

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Yes, in the real world, these jeepney operators do not think of your comfort, but only of the over the maximum seat capacity.

jeepney toe to toe

Yes, toe to toe, elbow to elbow, and sometimes, the person next to you gets annoyed and will elbow you ha ha


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These repurposed surplus vehicles may put a Buddha sitting on the dashboard and a rosary hanging above it. The exterior is very colorful.



The origin of the jeepneys could be traced during the American colonization of the Philippines and after the World War 2. The jeepney derived its name from the jeep and jitney, which were designed from the US military jeeps.

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The jeepneys evolved through the years as an inexpensive public transportation. The drivers now have regular routes, fixed jeepney rates, and licenses.


The largest manufacturers of jeepney in the Philippines are the Sarao Motors and the Francisco Motors.



A franchised jeepney carries passengers on a regular route while the personal or private vehicles have the signboard “Private” or “For Family Use Only” attached at the rear door.


There is a placard or small board signs at the front of the jeepney. On the sides, you can read the route and the route number. At the rear, you can see only the route number.


The signboard represents the route or places the jeepney is allowed to go around and pick up passengers. To make sure you are riding the right jeepney, you may ask the driver or the collector or barker at the back if your destination is included in their assigned route.


Beware of pickpockets and robbers

You may have heard stories about passengers being pick pocketed or robbed in a jeepney. Please do not bring valuables when you plan to enjoy riding a public jeepney. Also, hold your bags tightly and always check your wallets.


Jeepney terminals in malls

There are jeepney terminals where you can ride safely and maybe conveniently, such as the SM mall jeepney terminal, the JMall jeepney terminal, and the Ayala jeepney terminal.



Embark and disembarking passengers

There are designated points in the street for picking up passengers. However, if you can run, you can still ride and jump on in.


The secret to catching up a running jeepney? You just look at the barker’s eyes and wait for him to signal and say faster and if the jeepney slows down – that is your cue to run and jump. This is not advisable though but somehow, many locals are still doing this.


Jeepney fare

Always carry a small change in your coin purse. The driver and the barker will get angry if you give them notes and big bills. Try not to hand the driver anything larger than a 50 peso bill.


There are specific rates for the rides. If you are on for a longer ride, then you need to pay more than the regular rate. Just ask the barker or the collector how much you would be paying for your destination.


Ask and give your fare before you reach your destination or maybe a few kilometers after you rode the jeepney, just in case the collector needs to give you a change.


Children less than 6 years old are often free as long as you let them sit on your lap. If there is much space, you can let the kids sit on the jeepney seat, but if there is a paying passenger and there are no other seats available except the seats taken by your kids, you need to let them stand or else, pay the kid’s fare.

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