Manila Transport Guide

Hands down, the standout mode of transport in Manila is the Jeepney – a rustic World War II-era Jeep. These elaborately decorated jeep-bus hybrids are the most affordable and entertaining way to get around Manila.

How to get around Manila  

Local buses are only really useful to get to places on the main roads as they are prohibited from most streets in the centre of town. If in doubt, take a Jeepney instead – the destinations are written on signboards placed in the front windshield. While the traffic in Manila can be horrendous, the good news is Jeepneys are cheap – so sit back and try to enjoy the ride. The LRT and MRT trains are a clever option to soar over and past traffic. The only downsides are their lack of comprehensive coverage of the city and the mobs using the trains at rush hour. Motorcycles aren’t recommended for the faint hearted, as you’ll have to content with the loose and fast rules of local drivers. As for car hire, there are some confusing rules around driving a car in the city centre on certain days. Take a taxi if you must – they’re cheap and a safe way to get around town, just make sure the meter is on to avoid getting ripped off. If you’re ambitious enough to work out the Metro Manila, there are 3 types of main railway networks: Manila Light Rail Transit System (LRT), Manila Metro Rail Transit System (MRT) and the Philippine National Railways (PNR). Go the old-fashioned way if you can and hunt down a ride on a tricycle or even a horse carriage (kalesa), which are now only found along major streets.