Davao’s Honesty Jeepney: creativity sparked by COVID-19


Indeed! Davao Life is here. Many of us may have heard of honesty system, which is practiced in many establishments like coffee houses and souvenir shops in many countries, including Philippine.

In this system, everything is done through self-service. Customers can list down the items they are buying, leave the corresponding payment, and take their goods. They even collect their change by just getting if from the pool of money.

A different kind of honesty system, which became particularly useful in these adverse times, was the “honesty jeepney” that worked in the streets of Davao City before enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was implemented.

Jefferson Camasin, the netizen who was able to capture the footage of the honesty jeepney, said that the driver was willing to risk losing profit just so his passengers could be safe and have less chances of catching the virus. Instead of the usual way of having jeepney passengers pass on their payment from one to another until it reaches the driver, passenger of the jeep put their payment container that have been strategically placed and spaced out in the seats to comply the social distancing protocols.

The video went viral on the internet last March 24, 2020 that showed containers made of repurposed Shell Rimula engine oil plastic canisters were used not just to serve as dividers between passengers’ fares. In the video, a passenger was also heard joking saying, “Bawal kumupit (Stealling is not allowed).”

During pre-ECQ times when social distancing was implemented to crowded places and transportation, the honesty system in the jeep had been useful in ensuring that people were safe from coronavirus infection.

Because of strict distancing rules, only ten passengers were allowed at a time in jeepneys in Davao City. Jeepneys were still able to do their usual business in Davao City before an ECQ prevented them from operating last April 4, 2020.

I hope this story inspires you to be honey in everything you do. 

Stay safe at home and be healthy always!

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