Press Release
December 8, 2010


In light of the Christmas season when taxis are in demand, Senator Bong Revilla refiled a bill that would penalize tax drivers who refuse to give exact change to their passengers.

The senator pointed out that many people prefer the taxi as means of transportation especially during the Christmas season for convenience and time considerations but they often become victims of unscrupulous taxi drivers. "It has been observed that many taxi drivers collect excess fares from its passengers during the Holiday season. This includes not only Christmas shoppers and mall goers but also balikbayans and foreign tourists picked up from the airport; they are all easy prey to abusive cabbies," said Bong Revilla.

The lawmaker said while many people, particularly those who are employed, have more money at present because of Christmas bonuses and year end benefits, it is still not proper for cabbies to take advantage because it is a hard-earned money of their passengers."We can call it a subtle hold-up. Whatever the fare as registered in the taxi meter, there are taxi d rivers who automatically charged an amount rounded off to the higher ten. If a passenger asks for his exact change, the common answer is that they do not have enough money to give the change or this was their first trip, This is a time of sharing of blessings but we should not receive it by fooling other people. This is not the spirit of Christmas," he explained.

Based on guidelines of the Land Transportation Office (LTO), taxi drivers with flagged up meter or operating on contractual basis shall be charged P750.00 and his driver's license shall be suspended for forty five days, while discourtesy towards the passengers has a fine of P500.00 in addition to the suspension of driver's license for two months.

Unreasonable refusal to convey passengers has a fine of P1, 500.00 to be imposed against the driver and/or the operator in addition to the suspension of the license of the driver for two months. If the operator has knowledge or consent to the infraction committed, his OR-CR shall likewise be suspended for two months. "Several laws and ordinances were enacted to uphold the safety of the commuters to and from their places of destination. But we do not have a law that specifically addresses change-keeping of taxi drivers," the senator said.

Bong Revilla filed Senate Bill (SB) 2491 or the "Exact Fare Act", laying down the procedures on filing a complaint against change-keeping cabbies and the corresponding penalties according to the number of complaints. Under SB 2491, the victimized taxi passenger should file a complaint with Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) not later than five days after the violation is committed. The DOTC should, in not more than ten working days after the receipt of the complaint, issue a notice and conduct an investigation to the concerned driver and operator.

For the first offense, the violator shall be fined P1, 000.00 and P2, 000.00 for the second offense. For the third offense, the violator shall be fined P5, 000.00. and shall be suspended from driving public utility vehicle (PUV) for a period of not less than one month but not more than six months. For subsequent violations, the driver shall be penalized with a suspension for a period not less than one year but not more than two years and the operator's license to operate shall be suspended for the same period. The taxi driver shall be principally liable. However, in case of insolvency, the operator's subsidiary liability will be enforced.

News Latest News Feed