Earlier donated by Japan, the 50-year-old Kogane train can accommodate 81 passengers from Tutuban, Manila to Los Baños, Laguna. Previously an inspection train for the PNR, it underwent rehabilitation for the benefit of commuters. The train features adjustable and rotating chairs, stowable tables, leg rests, and a toilet.
From Manila to Los Baños, the trip takes about two hours and costs P150, according to Inquirer. So far, there are only two trips available: 5:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Depending on the demand, the PNR may add more trips.
One of the first passengers to ride the train was astrophysicist Rogel Mari Sese, according to ABS-CBN News. He complimented the comfy reclining seats, stowable leg rests and tables, cold air-conditioning, and other features of the train.
He said the train was slowed down at times by blockages on the road. “There are still a lot of ‘homes along the riles.’ Because there has been no train service on this route for a long time, people are not yet used to it. Hopefully the speed will be faster in the future when our kababayans already know that this is now a regular service.”
He advised commuters, “There are multiple stops along the way. Make sure you arrive early enough since each stop is less than two minutes.”
Aside from the Japanese train, there are two incoming train sets from Indonesia for the Tutuban-FTI and Malabon-FTI routes, according to PNR general manager Junn Magno. There are 31 more coaches expected to arrive until February 2020, according to Inquirer.
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