the Philippines

 

Manila, Luzon

 

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Jeepneys are hot!

Picture: delacova

 

Features of the jeepney

 

The oldest jeepneys were of origin old American jeeps. They were extended in length by approximately two meters. Inside were put two long seats and the 'jeepneys' were ready to serve as a small bus. The  'first generation' jeepneys were replaced by 'new' jeepneys produced in the Philippines. Small family enterprises built up jeepneys and even a jeepney fabric arose in Sarao, just south of Metro Manila. The fabric "Sarao Motors" went out of business in 2001. 

 

Hand built

 

The jeepneys, 'made in the Philippines', are all 'hand built'. Used parts (engines, transmissions,  axes) are imported from Japan. The chassis and bodywork are  original Philippine parts. Many of the jeepneys have loud horns and the driver blows it at everyone and everything.

Pictures: N. van der Drift

 

What makes a real jeepney?

Especially the  colorful and glittering ornaments on the car, like paintings, color lines, dots,  a specific name and frequently a typical small aluminum  horse (or two) in the front of the jeepney and extra lights. All these details make many jeepneys very special and give the Philippines a characteristic face.

 

Jeep-knees

More than once the seats in the jeepneys are full of passengers. Still, always some new passenger will be added. Sitting in a jeepney, your knees will unavoidable touch the knees of your neighbor. 

License to drive 

The owner of a jeepney  buys a permit or license to drive a certain route, called "Boundary". There is only a permit for  that route. The route is usually written on the side of the jeepney, for example: "Talambin - Carbon".

Tap your peso!

To get off at a particular location, you just  tap your peso coin on the roof.  The conductor will yell for the driver to stop.  When you get out and eventually new passengers get in, one single word "Sigi"  of the conductor is enough for the driver to move on.

 

Pictures: Scott Williams

   

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