Riding around Cebu

There are advantages and disadvantages of car hire in Cebu aswell as Taxis. Firstly a taxi you can just get out of when you get to your destination but it can become expensive over time. Car hire is hit and miss on getting a good car and the chances are you will struggle to get used to the chaos of Cebu. One thing is for sure don’t hire straight away! wait until your here a couple of days to see if you want to get into the bustle of traffic.

Using the Jeepneys if your staying in Cebu city itself is one of the fastest way rounds once you have worked out the routes and which Jeepneys you need they all have the to and from locations written on the side. But a bit difficult to wave it down once it has passed you but it does give you the opportunity to get the route number off it and watch out for the next jeepney with the same route number. I like riding jeepneys because they are very cheap and drop you off where you want to go. Although the smaller Suzuki type a lot of the time I cant see out the window due to my head touching the roof so anyone over 5`6” be warned.. although inside the City generally they are running the bigger units with a higher roof space.

Taxis are “OK” in the fact they serve they’re function like any other city on the planet. The only difference is sometimes they will try to overcharge e.g. if there is a fireworks display and know there is huge crowds they will try and get as much money out of you as possible. Simply I just get into a Jeepney and head further out picking a taxi cab up at a slower location. Ok its an extra 10 minutes and a few pesos but I`m not in a rush. At the airports don’t let them overcharge you get them to put the meter on. There is no excuse for them not to do it except to rip you off aswell as the fact that without the meter they are not registering the fare for tax and no doubt the cab owner isn’t making any money either. If you are in Cebu you can arrange with me and I will get a private car to meet you at the airport 24/7. Not only will you be able to use the driver with the car for the airport trips but he is also available for private hire for tour trips and trips out of the city all at fixed prices so you know what your paying. Aswell as the vehicles being in very good condition. Which is something that came up in a conversation with the owner of the hire vehicles in that Cebu is not renewing a lot of the franchises for older vehicles to try and phase them out. Which is good news for the passengers bad news for anyone with an old taxi.

V – Hire or minibus hire is available from most of the major mall bus terminals. But if your looking for this service I would also advise contacting myself as I can put you in touch with a reliable person with reliable vehicles.

Tricycles you don’t generally see in the main city but head out they start to appear on sub-division roads running up from the main roads. They are a bit restricted for the bigger or taller person but they get you from A – B I could say they are death traps and if they are on the main road I’m pretty sure I’m right the way the guys pull out in front of vehicles. But on the sub roads things are moving slower and they have been running those routes for years. I have seen several crashes with these in the last couple of years but “All on the main Southern Coastal road” no crashes I have come across on the inner sub division roads. So be warned.. and keep safe.

There is the other alternative which is hiring your own car or motorbikes/scooters which works well if you are quick thinking and fast reacting as driving here can be dangerous I cant put it any other way but people WILL pull out in front of you regardless of what speed you are doing. People will flash lights telling you they are coming through (NOT LETTING YOU GO FIRST). Majority of vehicles in the province areas don’t have lights on. Doesn’t mean they aren’t working but the fact is they turn them off when in the Sub roads aswell as the main roads. Don’t ask me why. Trucks generally will overtake and expect you to move in to give them space same with buses who will also cut from the outside lane to the inside lane just to pick someone up even if you are there.. they expect you to just slam the brakes on. These plus the congestion and the traffic lights are rarely working make Cebu a drivers worst nightmare. In two years I have had four accidents all when I was on the scooter. Due to people cutting me up, Aprils had a few relatives not so lucky, one had to replace some motorcycle parts and got away with a few bruises and cuts and another is now missing a leg. So be warned.. I wouldn’t advise anyone to drive here especially if you are just visiting the country you can afford to hire a driver so get one.. I would hate to visit anyone in hospital after they have been hit by a car,bus or truck or even worse have to help a family arrange to send the remains home for burial.Matt Wilkie driving