EDSA Traffic jam

10 Reasons Why Driving in Metro Manila Traffic is a Nightmare

The secret is out: according to the Huffington Post, the Philippines is one of the absolute worst places to drive in the world. We’re not exactly surprised. Here are ten reasons why.

1. Vehicles stop anywhere and everywhere for every possible reason imaginable.

Bus stop middle of EDSA

Photo taken here.

This happens in every major thoroughfare, or even on tight, cramped side streets that can barely fit one car. Apparently, a lot of drivers believe they literally own the road.

2. Corrupt cops.

Kotong cop

Full story here.

You know the type. Those who just stand and hide on the side of the road, doing nothing, until they spot you commit a minor infraction. Then they jump on you like there is no tomorrow, and request for “pang-merienda lang” to let you off.

Don’t feed the sharks people. Get the ticket, pay the fee.

3. Crazy jaywalkers.

Jaywalking Philippines

Because running through a major thoroughfare like EDSA while cars are whooshing all around you and with nothing to protect you except the clothes on your back is not stupidly, mind-numbingly nuts after all.

If you want to kill yourself, just overdose on sleeping pills or stab yourself. No point including an innocent driver just minding his business in the process.

4. Traffic safety regulations are optional.


“This is the government speaking. Are you sure it’s fine to allow a vehicle crammed full of so much people they can hardly breathe to drive along Metro Manila streets? Yes? Are you sure? Okay, off you go then.”

5. There are just too many cars!

EDSA traffic

Photo taken here.

It’s simple physics: no two objects can occupy the same space at the same time. Unless someone invents a way to allow cars to fly (or we extensively upgrade our public transportation system, which seems even more farfetched than flying cars), traffic is always going to be a bitch.

6. Motorcycle drivers drive like they are stars in their own action movies and tricycle drivers drive like they are motorcycle drivers.


It’s especially appalling when motorcycle drivers drive with babies. In what universe is that considered remotely a good idea?

(The answer is none. There is no universe which thinks that is a good idea. Unless you are stupid.)

Also, tricycle drivers, that sidecar thing on the side of your motorcycle is not an illusion. It is an actual thing that can hit other vehicles and objects and stuff. Please try to remember that, and please especially try not to hit people.

7. Road rage is a real thing.


Photo taken here.

Which is fine, if the rage is contained within the four corners of your car. The problem starts when a person with an overly-inflated sense of self steps out of his car and tries to bully people (like what Barney did in the picture above). In that case, his ego becomes a social problem (and/or you become the butt of social media jokes, like Barney, also above).

8. Politicians and their wang-wang (sirens).


Photo taken here.

Although, with the recent prohibition PNoy made against the use of the police sirens by politicians and powerful private citizens, the once-ubiquitous wang-wangs have now been replaced by actual police escorts. So, instead of a tiny siren on top of someone’s vehicle, we have jerks fitted out with a complement of traffic cops and policemen acting like they own the road.

9. Infrastructure projects that won’t seem to end.

EDSA construction

Photo taken here.

I’d love to agree with our President that Manila traffic is simply a sign of our booming economy, but it seems that the real reason is bureaucratic inefficiency.

10. Our crazy weather.

Flooding Metro Manila

Photo taken here.

Nature in this part of the world is kind of a bitch. Climate change is just making her that much bitchier.

Featured photo taken here.

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