In some provincial bus terminals, passengers experience discomfort such as overloading, long queues, overcrowding, delayed trips and stinking restrooms. Worse than enduring dirty terminal toilets is the P5 to P10 charged on users.
This practice of terminal operators will soon end with the passage of House Bill (HB) 725 and its approval by the Senate. The bill, originally proposed by the late Rep. Maximo Dalog of Mountain Province, prohibits the collection of fees from passengers for the use of sanitary facilities located in land transportation terminals, stations, stops and rest areas. Under the law, a passenger’s paid bus ticket will serve as a pass for the free use of the sanitary facility.
According to the law, operating transport terminals carries with it the responsibility of providing adequate facilities for the comfort of their clientele.
The collection of restroom fees is also a burden to the riding public as it makes travel within the country more expensive, according to Dalog in his explanatory note of HB 725.
Moreover, Dalog said the maintenance of rest areas and service facilities is part of the services for human care of common carriers, hence additional payment should not be imposed on travelers.
For terminal operators who will continue imposing toilet fees once the law takes effect, it will cost them more than what they charged for peeing or washing. Under the bill, violators would be fined P5,000. Now that’s good money down the drain for them.