Travel privilege for persons with disabilities

February 01, 2019

THE House of Representatives has approved on second reading House Bill (HB) Nos. 8884 and 8885 that will provide more affordable transportation for persons with disabilities (PWDs).

HB 8884, principally authored by Rep. Arlene Arcillas (1st District, Laguna), seeks to expand the coverage of travel tax exemption and provide a 20 percent travel tax discount to senior citizens and PWDs.

Meanwhile, HB 8885, principally authored by Rep. Alfred Vargas (5th District, Quezon City), shall institutionalize likewise the grant of 20 percent student fare discount privileges on public transportation.

The measures intend to provide additional benefits to these sectors of the society. Students, athletes, academic participants, and pageant contestants, who bring honor to the country, shall also receive incentives through travel tax discounts.

The measure on student fare discount seeks to empower students by enabling them to pursue their education, helping them acquire gainful employment, thereby securing their future.

“The bill seeks to address economic concerns and the alarming rate of school drop-out. This will alleviate the burden of the parents and guardians in the financial support given to the students with due consideration to the continued rise in the cost of education in the country, including their incidental expenses, e.g. transportation costs,” explained Vargas.

Arcillas’ bill will amend Presidential Decree (PD) No. 1183, stipulating that travel tax exemption will now also include the following individuals: (a) students who represent their schools and the country in international sports tournaments and academic competitions, as well as (b) Philippine representatives to academic conferences and competitions, to international sports competitions, and to international beauty pageants.

Likewise, it provides that senior citizens and PWDs will be granted 20 percent discount on travel tax imposed on first class and economy class passages.

Meanwhile, students shall receive 20 percent discount on the regular domestic fares of all public transportation utilities, including land, rail, sea, and air.