Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Tricycles in the Philippines

While there is a growing number of Filippinos who can afford to own a small motorcycle as a form of personal transportation, most of these vehicles are used as a form of income -- offered for hire.
A motorbike can be a taxi itself (with an extended seat, one can easily hold 5 or 6 Filippinos) or can be fitted with a side-car when it becomes a tricycle.

You see these most on the side streets in Manila where taxis and busses dominate the main roads (but not exclusively there) and in smaller cities. I love them -- they provide inexpensive and relatively reliable transportion from place to place.

Mostly they are used for shorter trips. Depending on your size (these were not designed for Americans in general, and certainly not for those of us who are larger), you can faily comfortably ride 3 to 7 people in one of these vehicles (plus the driver).

The tricycles and jeepnees are all named. On Saturday, Sandy and I found one which shares my name -- and, since we were thinking about hailing one for a trip back to the hotel, we hopped in. The driver told us that his wife's name is Ruth.

I've talked before about getting a golf cart for the transport from home to work in Orlando. I'd love one of these. I won't hold my breath -- we have too many regulatory bodies in the States to ever tolerate the "risk" of this type of transportion system. Too bad. These and jeepnees are really rather efficient and fun.

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