Taxicabs of the Philippines

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Taxicabs of the Philippines are one of the modes of transportation in the country. They are regulated by the Department of Transportation (DOTr), the Land Transportation Office (LTO), and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB). The taxicabs there vary from models and uses. Most taxicabs have yellow colored license plates, taxi signs, LTFRB Registration number, and taximeter, which is mandatory in every cab.

A Toyota Vios airport taxicab.


Taxicabs were already in use in the 1970s and 1980s, with the Isuzu Gemini being the most prominent model. In the mid-1980s, more models were seen on the road. Models included the Toyota Corolla, the Nissan Sentra, the Mitsubishi Lancer, the Daewoo Racer, the Hyundai Excel and the Kia Pride. In the late 1990s, taxi fleets started to use Asian Utility Vehicles (AUV) and multi-purpose vehicles (MPV) such as the Isuzu Hilander, the Mitsubishi Adventure, the Toyota Tamaraw FX and Revo, the Nissan Urvan, the Toyota HiAce, the Mitsubishi L300 and the Kia Pregio - not just because they were cheap to maintain but because also they offered a large seating capacity and versatility. Currently, there are scores of taxicab choices, which include the Toyota Vios and Avanza, the Kia Rio and the Hyundai Accent and Starex.


Taxis during the 1990s did not have a color-coding system but in 2001, LTFRB mandated that all taxicabs should be white. Some taxicab companies, however, still use their own colors to distinguish their units while keeping the roof and pillars white. Airport taxis, on the other hand, are yellow. A taxicab has a maximum operational lifespan of 10 years before being pulled out of service.

Each taxicab has its license plate number printed on both quarter panels. The rear of the car has the telephone numbers of the taxicab company and the LTFRB printed to report any reckless driving.

Areas where taxis are used[edit]

Aside from Metro Manila, taxicabs are evident in Baguio City, Cabanatuan City, Iloilo City, Bacolod City, Cebu, Cagayan De Oro, Davao City, General Santos, Naga City, Bohol and some parts of the country.

Cars which commonly serve as taxis in Philippines[edit]

Ordinary cabs[edit]

The most common models are marked in bold.

Airport taxis[edit]

These taxis are only available in airports in the country, especially in the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Special purpose cabs/FX/UV Express cabs[edit]

Discontinued cabs[edit]


Some imported vehicles like the Kia Avella (which is not available locally) are used. They are usually acquired from surplus car dealers.

Current trends[edit]

Most older taxicabs are powered by Liquefied petroleum gas due to the high price of gas. Because the LPG running vehicles boil water, due to increasing summer temperatures, taxicabs have their hoods unlatched while in motion to allow more cool air into the engine. This taxi is equipped with manual transmission.

The need for cars fueled by cheaper diesel gave rise to the adoption of diesel cars such as Hyundai Accent for taxi services.

In Media[edit]

Taksikab is the titular character of a film by novice independent filmmaker Archie Del Mundo which premiered in 2011. There were three identical Toyota Vios units that were depicted in the film, posed as just one taxi used by the main character. The taxi is used as a metaphor for violence and corruption in the society.

See also[edit]