Press Release
August 9, 2013


In a bid to lessen the impact of the economic difficulties that the country's young students face everyday, Senator Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara has proposed a wider student fare discount that would benefit more than 30 million students throughout the archipelago.

Angara, a known education advocate, said his Senate Bill No. 203 seeks to grant a 20-percent fare discounts to students on all transport utilities, even during weekends, semestral breaks, Christmas vacations and other legal holidays.

"Isn't it high time that we institutionalize this so-called student fare discounts to help and encourage the youth to stay in school amidst the financial hardships that confront them day in and day out," the lawmaker stressed, while adding, "This is our way of helping the underprivileged and indigent students to cope up with the times and finish their studies."

At present, students are given a 20-percent fare discounts only during weekdays from June to March, by virtue of a mere memorandum circular issued by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board which actually does not cover rail transport utilities.

"Students usually conduct their academic researches and group study activities during weekends. On the same note, it is only during semestral breaks and holidays that they are able to go home to their provinces to spend time with their families as well as to perform family-related duties," the senator explained.

Angara's bill, if passed into law, may also be a perfect counter to the recent pronouncement of an impending 10-peso rate hike at the Light Rail Transit Lines 1 and 2, and the Metro Rail Transir Line 3 scheduled to take effect starting late September.

"We must not only provide our young generation with a better quality of education. We must make sure that they stay in the race and do not drop out of school," Angara pointed out, as he called on his colleagues to support his proposal.

Covered by the measure are students from elementary, high school, and college students including those enrolled in vocational and technical schools.

SB 203 provides that students who are refused to avail of the privilege may file their complaints with the Office of the Secretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications.

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