‘A broken transport system’: Filipinos relate hard to Atom Araullo after news anchor laments inability to get a ride from the airport

Image: Atom Araullo (Twitter)
Image: Atom Araullo (Twitter)

Everybody who lives in Manila knows how hard it can be just to get from point A to point B, a struggle that seems to get worse each day. Which is why so many felt GMA News anchor Atom Araullo hit the nail on the head after the journalist tweeted he couldn’t get a ride from Manila’s airport on Friday night and blamed it on a “broken transportation system.”


“Just arrived at the airport from an overseas trip. No coupon taxis, no metered taxis, no Grab,” he wrote on Twitter. “We also don’t have buses and trains here. Basically if you don’t have someone picking you up, you’re dead. It’s been an hour and counting. This is what a broken [transportation] system looks like.”

Later, the journalist shared that he managed to book a Grab ride after nearly two hours, but only after setting his pickup pin to the departures area of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2.


“Update: was able to book Grab after a little less than 2 hrs. Setting the pick up location to the departures area (T2) worked,” he wrote. “Just have to crawl through traffic, hehe. I feel bad for those lined up for taxis, only few pass by. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers!”

Filipinos online said they agreed with the journalist’s sentiments, and compared their experiences in Manila versus other airports abroad.

Meanwhile, the Manila International Airport Authority, which operates all NAIA terminals, was quick to respond to the anchor’s woes and explained that the high demand and rush hour around the city was making it difficult for public transport vehicles to shuttle between terminals.

A recently released think tank study on urban mobility found Manila to have the fifth worst public transport system in the world, While the Metro has long had serious transportation problems, many of those issues have become even worse in recent month, such as long queues and fewer jeepneys plying the roads amid skyrocketing fuel prices have plagued the city this year.

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