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Contract for unified online ticketing system canceled —PPA

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) on Wednesday said the contract for the unified online ticketing system for ship passengers has been canceled which is why the country's ports are still dealing with long lines this Holy Week.

“Meron tayong nakalatag na programa yung unified electronic ticketing system. I-implement na dapat ito, iro-rollout na,” said PPA general manager Jay Santiago.

(We already laid out the unified electronic ticketing system. It was about to be implemented, rolled out.)

“Sa kasamaang-palad lang, pagpalit ng administrasyon sa PPA noong July ay kinansela yung kontrata for whatever reason, di ko malaman,” he added.

(Unfortunately, the contract was canceled during the transition of the new administration in the PPA in July for whatever reason, I don’t know.)

Santiago said he wants to revive the program because it is the “ultimate solution” to the long lines in ports and will also enable passengers to book their trips in advance.

He said some shipping lines are opposed to the unified online ticketing system because they already have their own platform.

But, the PPA official said some of these platforms are not working.

“Whatever system they have is not working. Otherwise, hindi tayo magkakaroon ng ganitong problema (we will not face this kind of problem),” he said.

Santiago pointed out that the PPA is also offering a viable solution as other shipping lines are still using a manual system for ticketing.

According to him, the government is offering the service so that shipping lines would spend less for their online ticketing system.

Aside from the manual ticketing system, Santiago also called out the lack of personnel in ticketing booths.

He said he asked shipping lines to set up ambulant ticketing booths the other day but they have yet to respond. According to him, the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) is finding other possible solutions. 

Santiago also noted the lack of available vessels to accommodate passengers.

According to him, half of the vessels were decommissioned after being damaged by Typhoon Odette in December 2021. Since then, there have been no additional vessels, he added. —VAL, GMA Integrated News