However, it cannot be denied that many first-time investors, entrepreneurs and overseas Filipino workers (OFW) who wants to settle here for good are drawn to this business. Why? It is because you can see jeepneys everywhere. It is considered as the number one mode of transportation, although tricycle and FX taxi drivers would try to dispute this one.
To succeed in this dog-eat-dog industry, one needs to first examine if it is in their system to be patient and are not afraid to get their hands dirty in dealing with the daily operation. Also, one needs to have a basic knowledge of what are the details involved in managing this business.
A common jeepney consists of a surplus diesel engine, 4th-5th gears, runs with about 10-12 MPG (miles per gallon). Jeepneys were originally American jeeps in WWII that were remodeled to accommodate 18-20 passengers and always with colorful decorations on its hood or crown. Mostly jeepneys run with open side panels or windows and passenger sits face-to-face. To ride a jeepney you can stop/call them on the road ensuring the route you're going is within the jeepneys destination and you can stop/descend by knocking on the jeeps ceiling-top or by calling on the driver. Normally minimal fare is from 1-5km from where you called them and adds a fee a kilometer after then.
COST AND INVESTMENT
Due to their high visibility and undeniable presence in the Filipinos daily lives, jeepney business is being considered as both a major and secondary source of income. When one tries to dip their hands into this venture, three (3) possible options are available: being an owner/operator; a driver and an owner/driver.
As an owner / operator, one has to take into consideration the following assumptions and estimates:
Cost of one unit : PhP 300,000 – PhP 350,000 (NEW)
PhP 100,000 – PhP 150,000 (SECOND HAND)
Maintenance Cost : PhP 6,000 monthly
Other Expenses : PhP 5,000.00 monthly
Boundary Payment : PhP 700.00 – PhP 1,000.00 daily
Average Operating Time : 8.00 – 10.00 hours daily
As a driver, the following calculations may be considered:
Jeepney Capacity : 10 persons per 3 kms
Cost per person : PhP 7.00 per person for the first 3 kms only
Average km runs : 100.00 kilometers per day
Boundary Fees : PhP 700.00 – PhP 1,000.00 daily
Cost of Diesel Fuel : PhP 38.00 per liter
Diesel Consumption : 4.5 kilometers per liter
If one wants to be an owner and driver at the same time, the above calculation will still hold true, but this time the boundary payment or fees will not be significant anymore.
It is easy to calculate the revenues of this business from the point of view of the owner/operator. It is just a simple subtraction of the cost from the profit or earnings after adjusting the time element. For instance, if you want to find out how much will earn in a month, using the high-end assumptions above, just multiply first the boundary by the number of days you plan to let the drivers operate the jeepney. If you want your jeepney to ply everyday except for 4 days a week, then that means Php 1,000.00 x 26 days (on average) = Php 26,000.00. Subtract the maintenance cost of about Php 6,000.00 and other expenses (i.e. electricity, rental) Php 5,000.00, which will leave you with Php 15,000.00. However, take note that this does not yet include the initial investment expense.
If we assume that you will buy a second hand jeepney for Php 150,000.00 and you got a loan from a bank that will require you to pay them P 5,000.00 monthly, including interest, then that means you only get Php 10,000.00 for each jeepney that you own. That amount would eventually increase once you have finished paying your loan from the bank, but you will also have to make sure that your maintenance expense remains within manageable levels after that since tires, parts, brake-clutch fluids and gear oils does not come cheap as your unit becomes old.
From the driver’s perspective, the monthly revenues can be calculated by first calculating profits per month. This means that a fully loaded jeepney will earn about Php 2,333.10 per day (10 persons x PhP 7.00 per 3 kms x 33.33 kms per day). The estimated 33.33 kms per day came from the assumption that passengers pay PhP 7.00 per 3 kms and a jeepney can run for at most 100 kms per day because of traffic. Hence, it follows that jeepney drivers receive payment for every 33.33 kms that they run (100 kms / 3 kms for every PhP 7.00 payment).
By subtracting the cost of boundary payment of PhP 1,000.00 and the daily diesel consumption of about Php 844.44 (100 kms / 4.5kms per liter x Php 38 per liter), the total revenue per day is equal to PhP 488.66. Multiply the daily revenue by 26 days shows that revenue per month for the jeepney driver amounts to about Php 12,705.16.
Based on the calculation above, a jeepney driver’s income depends highly on the number of persons they can get for a kilometer ride. Changing the number of passengers to less than 8 for every 3 kms will make the jeepney driver’s income less than 0. The reverse happens if the number of average passengers is increased.
PROBLEMS AND KNOWN ISSUES
Among the problems and issues encountered from operating or driving a Jeepney, the following are the most common:
- Maintenance cost increase substantially after 3 years because the parts does not come cheap for a vehicles driven to almost exhaustion everyday.
- Driving for 6-8 hours daily in any urban area in the country creates several health complications, such as asthma and tuberculosis.
- Jeepneys are prone to accidents since the guidelines in the granting of professional driver’s license are not strictly enforced.
- With their diesel engines, Jeepneys are known as the country’s biggest street polluters.
- The brisk way jeepneys are being driven around the country to pick passengers, is one of the reasons for street overcrowding and traffic bottlenecks.