LIVE the dream as Davao Metro Shuttle will launch in March next year the Mindanao Tour Bus program.
The program, which is supported by the Department of Tourism (DOT), aims to move tourists all over Mindanao by taking missionary routes to tourist destinations.
De Carlo Uy, president of Davao Metro Shuttle, told Davao reporters Friday, September 30, at the Marco Polo Hotel that they initially invested some P100 million for this program.
"We will have some 20 45-seater buses to serve this program. This will be a regular bus route except that we shall prioritize the tourist destinations," he said, adding that the buses were ordered from China.
The route will start in Davao City going to Buda-Bukidnon-Cagayan de Oro- Butuan and back to Davao.
Uy said the units are tourist buses that are complete with reclining chairs, restrooms, wi-fi and TV screens.
The tourist buses will also be wrapped with features of tourist "destinations."
"Actually, this kind of bus program is already popular in other Asian countries, so why we can't?" Uy said.
Asked on how much one passenger will cost to avail the bus tourist services, he said, the price will be 10 to 15 percent higher than the regular price.
The program, Uy said, has started in the franchising requirements and mobilizing the tourism community particularly destinations where the buses will go.
Discussions with the key sectors namely Mindanao DOT offices, the Mindanao Development Authority (Minda), Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (Tieza) and the security already commenced.
Last Friday, a formal partnership Agreement with the DOT Mindanao office as the government lead partner in institutionalizing the program with Davao Metro Shuttle was inked.
DOT Secretary Wanda Teo and these government offices will also sign a memorandum of agreement this month.
Meanwhile, the bus firm has a total of 180 buses in Davao Region with some 25,000 passengers daily.