Many may be wondering at how some bus and jeepney operators manage to continue operating under severe capacity restrictions.
This is especially true in Metro Manila, or the National Capital Region, which seen community quarantine restictions go from one level to another continuously since the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country.
Transport operators were among the hardest hit since all public transport was stopped and when allowed to resume did so under severe capacity restrictions and protocols.
So how are many transport operators surviving or even earning a little profit under the pandemic?
One answer may be the Service Contracting Program or SCP that government implemented and funded under Republic Act No. 11494, otherwise known as the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act.
In part RA 11494 aimed to provide temporary livelihood to displaced workers in the transportation industry.
Lead implementor of the Service Contracting Program is the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) led by its chairman Martin Delgra III.
Simply put, the program “provides for operators and drivers an opportunity to earn based on the number of trips they run per week and make their public utility vehicle (PUV) operations sustainable whether they have passengers or none,” said Delgra.
The SCP also was used to support IATF and Department of Transportation (DOTr) initiatives to provide free transport to health workers in Metro Manila during the early days of community quarantine restrictions, hitting two birds with one stone.
These initiatives—the SCP and the free transport for health and other essential workers— were later extended to other regions and expanded to cover all APORs or Authorized Persons Outside Residences.
Funding for the SCP was into billions but this was seen to have done a lot of good for those who participated in the program.
It’s no surprise then that authorities have decided to extend the SCP more and expand it farther nationwide, especially now that Covid-19 cases are surging in more regions and communities across the archipelago.
The LTFRB has formally relaunched the program with a P3 billion allocation under the 2021 General Appropriations Act (GAA), or Republic Act No. 11518.
During the relaunch, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said the SCP has been good for everyone, the community, the economy, and for trade to grow even under pandemic conditions.
Shelby here, Ranger later
Ford Philippines is not pulling any punches in growing its market locally, pandemic or no pandemic.
It has brought in the new Mustang Shelby GT500.
Yes, a Shelby with a 5.2-liter supercharged cross-plane crank V8 engine, packing 760hp and 847Nm of maximum torque, mated with a 7-Speed Tremec dual clutch transmission.
And that’s all one needs to know about the Mustang Shelby, although it comes with all manner of bells and whistles.
There are even 11 colors to choose from— Antimatter Blue, Carbonized Gray, Grabber Yellow, Oxford White, Shadow Black, Velocity Blue, Race Red, Twister Orange, Iconic Silver, Rapid Red, and Performance Blue.
You can have one for just P7,760,000. Add P15,000 for one in Twister Orange.
Now if that’s not Ford being confident about the post-pandemic world or even with longer pandemic, then consider it already teasing pickup enthusiasts about the next-generation Ranger coming soon.
The big reveal is happening before the year is over, and perhaps a local launch by 2022.
It’s only September but already auto dealers are going all out with their yuletide holiday promos.
Mitsubishi Motors Philippines is among them, offering low downpayment deals for the Mitsubishi Mirage, Xpander, Strada, Montero Sport, and L300 until the end of the month.
It’s P28k all-in for the Mitsubishi Mirage, P78k for the Xpander Cross, P88k for the Strada, P168k for the Montero Sport , and P88k for the L300.
Toyota Motor Philippines is looking to make it a September to remember for many with what it calls incredible deals on new vehicle purchases, free maintenance services, and other exclusive deals.
One can drive home a Wigo E MT for as low as P5,970 a month; or an Innova 2.8 J Diesel MT for P12,372.
Or an all-in package rate of P192,750 for the Innova 2.8 E Diesel MT.
The Fortuner G AT 4×2 can be had for a P16,992 a month; or the Hi Ace Commuter Deluxe for P17,155.
Toyota is also offering free Period Maintenance Service of up to 20,000 kilometers for select variants of the Vios, Corolla Altis, Rush, Innova, Fortuner, Hilux, and Hiace.
Also all Toyota customers are entitled for a Free Safety Inspection at All Toyota dealership nationwide from September 1 to 30, 2021.