Public transportation may vary but it will never replaced the first public vehicle we had. The buses. Before we had jeepneys, it was the buses that first made public transportation easier. Because of that, Philtranco is now celebrating its first centennial year.
First established as Al Ammen Transportation Company by founders Albert Ammen and Max Blouse in 1914, it first operated from Iriga to Naga. It transferred ownership to the Tuason family in 1958 then during Martial Law, to the Mantrade Group where it changed its name to Pantranco South Express Inc.
In 1979, it expanded its coverage to Eastern Visayas region. It was in 1984 where it formally changed to Philtranco Service Enterprise Inc. Then in 1986, it covered the whole archipelago via ferry service as the first nationwide bus liner coverage.
Last July 6, I was invited by Philtranco on its celebration of its 100th year at their Pasay City terminal. During the event, it was mentioned that there is a simultaneous celebration in Bicol. They also unveiled the historical marker during the event.
What were the changes that happened recently for Philtranco? Earlier during the year, Philtranco just signed a contract with Pinoy Travel for buying tickets online. If you having hard time purchasing tickets during peak seasons, this is the best way to get the seats for the trip you like. They also tie up with Via.com to offer their services for exclusive trips.
I also found out that there are already bus drivers or bus captains, as they are now called, are women. Driving a public bus is no longer exclusive job for men. What are we looking forward for the future of Philtranco? According to Ms.Christine Guevarra of Philtranco's marketing department during the presentation. Not only that there are hiring for lady bus captains but the bus captains will be looking for presentable during the trips.
Philtranco already have three types of buses that is operational now. The deluxe buses are non-airconditioned buses, the premium deluxe are the air-conditioned buses, and the executive coach. For the trips across the archipelago, Philtranco tied up with Fastcat, catamaran ferry boats for cross-island trips. Philtranco also have their own magazine publication distributed among the bus terminals to make the passengers entertained for long trips. Indeed that riding a bus to any province won't be the same from now on.
Time for me to plan my next trip. Follow this blog for more updates about Philtranco or like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook