10 Hacks When Commuting to Baguio City

4:30:00 AM Capturing Footprints 0 Comments

For eight straight weekends, I have found myself commuting to Baguio. 

This made me decide to move to Cubao where the terminals for buses going north are located from my rented condo unit in Pinagbuhatan, Pasig. It was a big decision. 

So now from Amaia Cubao along P. Tuazon Avenue, it takes a 15- minute walk to reach Victory Liner and Genesis terminals. Every Friday night, that is what I do.

Here are some hacks I want to share with you.

1. Long queue at Victory Liner? Use your Premiere Card.

Buy a Premiere Card at a kiosk for P300, and you can join the VIP lane along with PWD persons. For future trips, you can also use it as a debit card to make your online reservations. 

Even in Baguio whenever I climb the stairs to the booking area and find a long line of passengers, I just show my card to the security guard and I am escorted to the VIP lane where I am next in line. 

Some people may think that P300 is a big amount of money to waste, but time and convenience is worth more than that amount. In fact while I am waiting for my new card to be delivered by Metrobank to our office in Galleria, I purchased my second card for emergency. 

2. Long queue of chance passengers at Victory Liner? Go to Genesis instead!

While I go to Baguio regularly, I do not have a plan on what trip to take. Thus, I always end up buying a regular ticket at Victory Liner then give a shot at the chance passenger lane. 

For many years that has been my routine. But hey, there is a Genesis bus a few meters away whether in Cubao or Pasay. 

At Genesis, they aboard passengers on a first come- first served basis. They do not have a reservation system, which is perfect for me who goes to the station at any given moment.

Genesis has been my favorite in my past trips, but I have to warn you about how their conductors lie to you: do not believe when they say it is the last bus to Baguio-- they have hourly trips to Baguio.

Here's a photo from my previous trip where only about five of us were riding the bus on a stormy Saturday evening.

3. Rushing? Take the Joy Bus (Genesis) or Deluxe Bus (Victory) or ask about their regular trips that take  the TPLEX route. 

Joy Bus and Deluxe buses are equipped with a restroom, so stopovers are no longer needed. 

Of course, these trips are a bit more pricey. 

Another option: ask about their regular buses that pass through TPLEX. This is a rarity since most buses still use the regular route on SCTEX wherein they pass through more areas for passenger drop offs. 

Both options will transport you from Metro Manila to Baguio for four hours or less, instead of the regular six hours. 

Photo courtesy of How She Wanders

4. Use long pants, thick sweaters, and a hoodie. Geez!

Praaaaamis, it is colder inside the bus than in Baguio. And you cannot tell the conductor to adjust the aircon temp.

Well, if you find yourself in a situation where you are really, really cold, try rubbing yourself to your seatmate for some heat sharing. 

So please believe me when I say it's winter inside the bus. The good thing is you cou can be as fashionable as this:

 But here's my version without the hoodie! K-Pop, anyone?

5. Bring barya.

Not all restrooms in stopovers are free to use. I am referring to the stopovers of Genesis. With Victory, all of their stopovers have restrooms that are free to use.

Thus when you go out to pee, always bring with you at least five pesos. Add etneb if you want to buy some chichiria.

Me? I'm ready!

6. Never believe those barkers near the terminal when they say there are no longer trips to Baguio.  Just go straight ahead to the booking office or the driver of the bus.

7. Don't worry about public transport in Baguio. Take a taxi!

Baguio taxis are the most honest and the most responsible. Go to the news to prove my claim duhhh. 

Although taxi rate in the Baguio- La Trinidad area has drastically increased, you can rely on them. You can tell them to bring you to a specific address and you’ll reach that address without any worries. 

8. Heading to Baguio for your Sagada trip?

Buses bound for Sagada are located in Dangwa and Slaughter House terminals. Look for GL or Lizardo buses that will take you to this view.

Okay if you have questions about the trips, I'll try to answer them with my two beautiful sissies- Manang Marlene and Ading Khujie!

9. No more cash? There are ATM machines inside Victory Liner Cubao.

10. The cord!

Always make sure that your cord is easy to find in your bag. There are buses with ports, so you can charge your phone while on the road. 

Extra Hack: 

11. If you are Grabbing your way to Genesis Cubao, you should pin Dominion Bus Terminal located along EDSA cor. New York Avenue instead. The more famous Genesis Cubao terminal, which is far across the road, is not for buses bound for Baguio.  

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