By Rizal Obanil
Senator Grace Poe on Thursday pitched a suggestion from a concerned citizen to the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to offer business-class-like reservations for a certain part of Metro Rail Transit (MRT) train coaches to passengers.
In a Senate hearing on the DOTr’s budget, Poe attributed the suggestion to a certain concerned citizen who said that such a service could encourage motorists with cars to ride the MRT instead, and in effect, help lessen the number of private vehicles that travel on EDSA.
The Senator said that the price of the reservation could either be double or triple the price of the regular fare.
“Like kunyari sasakay ka ng eroplano di ba? Mayroong front seats na mas mahal, first to board, but you pay a premium (Like for example when you ride an airplane. The front seats are usually more expensive),” ABS-CBN News quoted Sen. Poe as saying.
Although the move might be seen as “discriminatory”, she believes that the fund can be used to help the MRT in the long run.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said that they could entertain the said suggestion but they still have to rehabilitate the MRT first.
He explained that it was not feasible to offer the luxury services now because the MRT was already having difficulty, as it is, in deploying enough coaches for the riding public.
The MRT has often been criticized for having frequent train breakdowns, which often leads to unloading of passengers.