At almost noon, Lola Consolacion is sitting on top of her luggage, on the ground, under the heat of the sun, right in front of one of the gates of Araneta Bus Station in Cubao, Quezon City. She is calm but there are traces of disappointments all over her face. She is 85 years old. She has been sitting there since five in the morning waiting for her bus to arrive and will travel granddaughter to her province in Roxas City, Iloilo. According to her, she has travelled back and forth Iloilo and Manila on holidays for vacation in the past years, but it was her first time to experience such inconvenience on 27 December 2016.

Lola Consolacion is just one of thousands of other passengers stuck in the station days before new year’s eve on December 2016. Many busses travelling back to Manila have been stranded in the provinces after typhoon Nina (Nock-ten) badly hits areas of Southern Luzon on Christmas.

Hopeful and aggravated stranded passengers camp around the station, some of them have been sleeping there in the last of couple of days hoping to get a ride back home before New Year’s Eve. Several bus operators can no longer accommodate passengers and could not sell additional tickets due to overbooking and lack of busses. While passengers thicken, there were few busses willing to accommodate them. Therefore, once a bus opens its door, everybody wants to get on it desperately.

This situation is no longer stranger to many commuters in the metro. Bus Stations are always filled on weekends and it gets worse during holidays; and bad weather makes it more damaging to commuters and operators. Terminals are usually packed with passengers travelling to their provinces while few busses can accommodate them all on time.

Terminal is a project showcasing the state of bus stations in the metro and the situation of Filipino commuters travelling back home to their families in the provinces.

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