The first hurdle every traveler faces upon arrival to any tourist destination is the need for a transportation service from the airport to their place of stay or hotel. In the Philippines, specifically in Manila, taxi cabs are the custom vehicles that appear to rotate around all three terminals of the airport. Although, in the constant modernization of transportation in the city and around the world, transportation apps like Uber and Grab make getting a ride easier.
When I arrived from my trip to Europe last June 2016, I was fortunate enough to be picked up by my family and relatives from the airport. Although, witnessing the obvious chaos that goes on in airports with the first hand struggle of my cousin’s girlfriend when finding a ride home, UBE Express was a legit service and life saver.
Arriving at NAIA, it became quite difficult for my travel companions such as my cousin and his girlfriend, to get a cab that will drop them off in two different places using one route. My cousin needed to go straight to his hotel in Dusit Thani in Makati City for another flight the next day, while his girlfriend had to be brought to her place at the Shell Residences in Pasay City. It became quite the struggle for myself as well since it was quite difficult to book an Uber or Grab a few hours before rush hour itself.
UBE by Chance
We then overheard a couple having a conversation regarding the bus they were going to ride going to their hotel. It was quite puzzling because buses in the Manila can be quite tricky to ride during rush hour, with all the people rushing to get home and the cramped space from people forcing themselves in the bus, it was indeed shocking for me to witness such excitement from Filipinos themselves.
Out of sheer curiosity, my cousin decided to ask where they were going to get a bus from NAIA directly going to the Makati area at an unpleasant hour. The couple then mentioned the new UBE Express which launched just last January 2016, was a premium bus service that many Filipinos were getting into for its stellar service and practical routing system. We then decided to Google the UBE Express and eventually got around to booking a ticket online. It was fast, convenient and definitely user friendly.
How is it different from a regular bus?
The new service that was provided by the Department of Transportation and Communication is an airport bus service that bring tourists, travelers and visitors from the airport to the main business districts around Manila.
The UBE Express costs about PHP 9.8 million which has the seating accommodation of 24 passengers for a fixed rate of PHP 300. Passengers are also presented with several payment methods aside from cash, like via credit card or the usage of tap cards. It takes several routes around Manila in order to cater to the most efficient and convenient needs of the tourists and travelers on board.
|Route 1 – Entertainment City||Route 2 – Makati||Route 3 – Grand Prix|
What are the features like?
The premium bus also has a variety of features very conducive for every tourist and travelers’ needs. The UBE Express holds euro V and blue tec technology with low emission rate and excellent in fuel economy. It also follows through with the Euro IV standard and holds exclusivity when it comes to the usage of petron fuel with its tri-active formula.
When it comes to the actual vehicle in itself, it boasts a low floor entry for easy access of travelers and tourists who have extra baggage with them. It is also considered a practical feature for passengers who are or who are with PWDs or senior citizens. The seats in the airbus provide comfort and flexibility for extra adjustments to make enough room for every rider.
Aside from the UBE Express having its own on-board wifi, they also show on screens the arrival and departure information of boarders. It is also accompanied by a clear display of information pertaining to the city’s weather and other emergency details necessary. The UBE Express has its own on-board GPS tracker and even a mobile app passengers may download in order to get their ETA. This airbus takes hold of the GPS feature making it easier to track several alternate routes and avoid those prone to congested traffics and accidents.
Online Booking Service
Apart from all the superb features mentioned above, the best one will have to be the ability of every tourist or traveler to book a seat in the UBE Express online. It also allows users to access the website on their desktop or mobile phones in order to book their own seats prior to their arrivals.
Addressing Manila’s Transportation Problem
The UBE Express is one innovation and development brought to several passengers, visitors, tourists and travels who made the best effort to contribute to the tourism industry of the Philippines. It was developed in order to address the growing concern regarding the need for efficiency and practicality for commuting around the metro, especially in busy areas like NAIA.
This premium and top notch quality airbus enables its passengers to depend on its quality service when it comes to getting to where they’re going and at the same time, getting their values worth for money. Not only did my cousin and his girlfriend get to their own destinations, they were also more convinced at how impressive the UBE Express service was compared to booking the usual Uber or Grab. It gave them leeway to meet other local and foreign passengers going the same route as them; one through the Makati Route where the Dusit Thani and one through the Entertainment City Route where Shell Residences was. This is just another testament to the efforts of the local government to address the transportation issue in the Philippines, giving the people what they need, what they want and what they don’t mind having like new company to meet.