Five tips for surviving commuting in the metro

Commuting in Metro Manila is no easy feat. It’s kind of like Nintendo’s Super Mario game. Each step you make is Mario inching towards the Princess Peach’s castle. Each time you line up for the train or a car is a Fire Piranha Plant spitting fire; you need patience to get past it. And the commute or the ride itself is Bowser at the bridge a.k.a. the boss battle.

Like every video game, there are tips and hacks to commuting that help you hurdle through the obstacles. It’s not like you have three lives to waste, right?

Here are some foolproof tips to make the commuting hustle less of a hassle:


This app is a life-saver, especially if you’re a newbie commuter. When you input your location and destination, it shows you the different rides you can take, as well as other routes. Review your trip before you go and plan it out on the app. It will also show you how much the fare is for the rides, which is convenient. Pro tip: it won’t hurt to ask the driver about the fare if you feel like the listing on the app is too expensive.

Check out where you’re headed on Google Street View

Unsure about which building you’re supposed to be going to? You can look the address up on Google Maps and click on Street View to see the general vicinity of the area. This will come in handy if you’re not familiar with the area you’re going to. You can also share your location to friends or family members to keep them updated with your whereabouts.

Follow MMDA’s social media accounts for updates

For those commuting daily in Metro Manila, add MMDA’s social accounts to your following list. Their socials post instant updates on the latest need-to-know happenings on the road, from announcements about the trains to closed roads and changing traffic schemes.

Keep yourself awake and entertained

Dozing off in public transit isn’t the safest thing to do. While it helps you catch up on rest, you might end up losing some valuables. Just keep yourself awake with some tunes and games while you sit (or stand) in a PUV. Download some podcasts from Spotify and let it keep you company for the next couple of hours. Don’t forget to carry earphones with you before you leave the house. Pro tip: if you have cash to spare, opt for wireless earbuds so you won’t get tangled up with wires while on the road.

If all else fails and you can’t help from dozing off, set an alarm that will wake you up before the ride ends.

beep card

Reload your beep card online

Skip the long lines at the MRT or LRT and load up your beep card with your phone anytime, anywhere. If you have PayMaya or the BPI app, you can easily transfer load to your beep in just a few taps. Learn how to add load to your beep with BPI here.

Got any other commuting tips or hacks? Leave them in the comments section.

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