Senator Sonny Angara sought the passage of a measure seeking to expand the coverage of the 20% student fare discount to not only land transport but also air, water, rail transport.
“This is an early Christmas gift to the students. Parents will surely save money because we know that they not only spend money for tuition fees but also for allowance and transportation fare of the students,” Angara, one of the authors of the bill and vice chairman of the education committee, said in Filipino.
Under the Senate Bill 1597, all students enrolled in basic and tertiary education institutions, including technical-vocational institutions, will be entitled to a 20% discount on regular domestic travel fares–including jeepneys, buses, UV Express vans, taxis and transport network vehicle services Grab and Uber, MRT, LRT, domestic flights–upon presentation of their duly issued school ID or current validated enrollment forms.
Angara, an education advocate and also one of the authors of the Free College Law, said the passage of the bill will bring “sigh of relief” not only to over 20 million public and private students but also to their families.
“This is especially more significant to the beneficiaries belonging to the indigent, and underprivileged sector that rely on public transport services,” the senator said.
The discount will take effect the whole year including weekends, summer breaks, and holidays.
However, post-graduate students, those who take up medicine, law, masteral and doctoral degrees, and other short term courses of seminar type, are not qualified to avail the discount.
Meanwhile, Filipino students who will travel abroad for education, training, and competition will be exempted from the payment of travel tax upon proper showing of proof or documentation of intended purpose.
“The holiday season is already near and students will surely be going home to their provinces. Now that there will be a 20% discount, the fare will be more affordable so that families will be complete as they celebrate Christmas and New Year,” Angara said.
Angara also said that for example, students who will go home to Davao can save up to P2, 000 on their round trip airfare which currently costs about P10, 000.
He added that land, water, air and rail transportation utilities that refuse to grant student discount will be penalized with a fine ranging from P5, 000 to P200, 000.