Free rides in public utility vehicles offered under the government’s nationwide service contracting program are set to end by July, according to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

Data from the LTFRB shows 146 National Capital Region public utility jeepney (PUJ) cooperatives and corporations will end the free ride services by June 30. 

“For the buses, Busway will end by July pa as well as Commonwealth Route 7 bus from Montalban to Quezon Avenue,” LTFRB Executive Director Tina Cassion was quoted as saying.

The Edsa Busway Carousel gave free rides to commuters on April 11 under the third phase of the service contracting program of the Department of Transportation (DOTr). 

The program offers a one-time payout and weekly payments to public utility vehicle (PUV) operators and drivers who will participate in the government’s free ridership program. The payment will be based on the number of kilometers traveled per week—with or without passengers. 

In April, the routes for the free ride program involving PUVs were expanded nationwide. 

Ronald Espartinez