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How to ride a Jeepney

Riding a Jeepney can be a fun experience for the tourist here and it is a cheap alternative to taxi cabs for getting around, but there are a few things you should know before you take that first Jeepney ride.

First, most are open air, which means if you are stuck in traffic, be prepared to cover your face with a handkerchief because of exhaust fumes. Next thing to take into account is if you are tall you may want to sit near the exit because the ceilings are low and you may prefer not to try to work your way to far inside to get a seat. One more important point to keep in mind is the drivers have a tendency to pack as many people as possible into one, so sometimes it a tight fit inside. The attitude seems to be, there is always room for one more. Some passengers will stand on the protruding platform at the rear of the Jeepney as well because of that.

When it comes time to pay the fare it is a good idea to have the exact change or at least some of the local currency in small denominations. It you are sitting towards the rear and the Jeepney is crowded you can just reach out at arm’s length and another passenger will pass your fare down to the driver. Sometimes the Jeepney driver will have a helper that rides on the back directing the passengers and collecting the fare, in which case you would just pay them.

When you want to ride a Jeepney you can catch one at a terminal or usually you can just hail one like you would a taxi and they will stop and pick you up. When you have reached your destination, just tap on the hand rail on the ceiling with a coin or key and they will pull over and let you out. This is common and the easiest way if the driver doesn’t speak your language, plus it beats yelling in some ones ear to stop. :-)

Riding a Jeepney can be a lot of fun despite the occasional annoyances like heavy traffic and sometimes be packed in like sardines. There are plenty available and are a cheap alternative to a taxi cab which have their draw backs as well.

Below is a video that takes a humorous, but mostly accurate view of how to ride Jeepney. I say mostly because I wouldn't recommend laying your head against someone else. With that said, it is an excellent video with some very good tips.

How to Ride the Jeepney in the Philippines