According to the lecturers who welcome you to driving schools, the first thing a driver should learn when enrolling in their institution is “Always remember that you are in the Philippines.” In the Philippines, this unofficial rule has been implemented as a result of the country’s intractable traffic policies and never-ending traffic congestion. Lack of public transportation, as well as the inefficiency of the traffic system, are in accordance with inadequate traffic policies. As the Philippines is known as a third-world country, a large number of Filipinos would still rely on and prefer public transport. Unfortunately, the Philippine government was unable to take advantage of the pandemic during the series of lockdowns and community quarantines that occurred throughout the country. Yet, companies were strongly encouraged to work at full capacity on-site again as of April 4, 2022. This is predicted to result in an increase in commuters on the roads, especially considering that more than half of the country is currently under Alert Level 1. With that, although there is a lot of traffic jams on a daily basis, people always question, “How to avoid traffic?”
Because of factors such as walking under the scorching sun in the Philippines’ usual hot weather, dealing with long lines while waiting for public transportation, and considering expensive alternative modes of transportation in order to arrive at your destination on time, commuting has never been an easy task. Opportunely, there are still companies that would allow employees to work from home on a part-time basis.
However, for those commuters who must endure exhausting commuting 10 times a week, the following are some ways to avoid traffic:
1. Plan Ahead, Mr. Potato Head
Filipinos, like Mr. Potato Head from the animated movie series Toy Story, are universally well-known for their dedication to their jobs and communities. In spite of that, Filipinos are well-versed in the concept of “Filipino time,” which refers to being minutes to an hour late for a scheduled call time or being late for anything. Taking that into consideration, the most possibly effective strategy to avoid being late is to prepare ahead of time. Schedules should not only include time slots for everything from preparing to traveling to arriving, but they should also include time slots for waiting for public transportations. If you have a history of being late, it may not be a bad idea to set your alarm an hour earlier than usual in order to avoid being late. However, in addition to arriving early, other ways to avoid traffic by preparing ahead include crowdsourcing and staying up to date with the latest information. Using the modern technology period, which has generated amazing applications like as Maps, Google Maps, and Waze to improve our navigational expertise, we can actually observe whether roads are experiencing light or heavy traffic. These applications can therefore present alternate routes that can be used to help you adapt your mode of transportation selection. In addition to this, as part of the modern technology era, news and updates are now more readily available to everyone through the usage of the internet and social media platforms. This is really beneficial for everyone since it allows us to see the most recent updates, such as those provided by the MMDA, or Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, which is in charge of the traffic system.
2. Let’s Go This Way
For most people, stepping out of their comfort zone has never been an easy thing to do. If being stuck in traffic has always been a source of worry for you, it may be time to consider taking an alternative route. Metro Manila is home to a large number of businesses and organizations that employ thousands of people. Although the Philippines may be lacking in public transit, the fact that there are still a variety of forms of transportation available in Metro Manila is a positive. Fortunately, the Manila Light Rail Transit (LRT) and the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) have continued to expand their respective train systems in recent years. But, in addition to that, three-wheeled vehicles such as tricycles and sidecars/pedicabs, as well as our well-known jeepneys, are also highly popular in the Philippines. Thus, these drivers are quite resourceful and street-smart, which is a fantastic asset when instructing them to take you to the most convenient drop-off place for your destination, avoiding traffic jammed roadways.
3. Wanna Ride a Single?
Motorcycles are referred to as “single” in the Philippines, where they are more commonly found. Motorcycles are now officially recognized as a mode of public transportation, which is a fortunate development. Transportation applications such as Angkas and JoyRide are well-known and genuine modes of motorcycle transportation. But come to think of it, what is the benefit of using this form of transportation in this situation? Is it truly helpful in terms on how to avoid traffic? The answer is affirmative. Motorcycles are not referred to be “singles” for no reason. As we all know that motorbikes are small in comparison to vehicles and buses, thus it is expected that they can totally pass through tight and crowded traffic. With the exception of people who are unable to wake up at a reasonable hour or who are running late, they can consider this mode of transportation to be the most accommodating. Because motorbikes are quite fast, you will almost certainly save time compared to the time you would have spent by public mass transportation.
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4. Hitting Two Birds with One Stone
Given that the world has been grappling with a pandemic for more than two years, reduced to no physical contact and social distancing have become part of the new normal. For those who have the enough extra time, walking or cycling can be an effective means as one of the ways to avoid traffic. By exercising, you are also practicing social distancing, which is beneficial because you are doing a good deed for your health, additionally that walking is often considered to be the best form of exercise. Cycling, on the other hand, is a mode of transportation that can be as good as with walking. Bicycles, like motorbikes, are also more compact in size than other vehicles, making them ideal for navigating in congested roads and highways. Besides that, cycling is extremely beneficial to the environment because unlike motorized and oil-based vehicles, it produces no pollution.
5. What’s Up, Home-y?
Because of the pandemic that we are presently experiencing, the Work-From-Home (WFH) configuration and hybrid work setup has become more standard. Due to the fact that this WFH remote working has been taken into consideration, you will not be required to leave your home, which is a good thing in order to avoid contracting the COVID-19 infection. Because there would be fewer commuters, this configuration can also be extremely beneficial to traffic flow. So, if you are not obliged to work on-site at this time, working from home may be beneficial to you, your health, and the flow of traffic in our city.
6. Live Near Your Work
If the primary source of your daily stress on commuting is the fact that you live a long distance away from your place of employment, you may want to consider relocating out of your home or renting a condominium as a way to avoid the never-ending traffic in our country. The Pag-IBIG Housing and Bria Homes cater different affordable and ready-for-occupancy house and lots and condominiums.
Written by Hanna Bacani