Free wifi onboard a bus. Is this good?

Wifi on board the De Leon Express bus that I road from Kamias in Quezon City to Dau, Mabalacat, Pampanga

Langyaw.com on my laptop while on the go. CLICK TO ENLARGE

I was bound for Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) for my flight to Cebu (well, I can’t complain if plane tickets are free) and what surprised me when I boarded the De Leon Express bus bound for Urdaneta in Pangasinan with a stop over in Dau, Mabalacat, Pampanga was the presence of on board and free wifi!

This is the first time I’ve rode one as I just saw one bus company along Taft Avenue in Manila offering it but never expected it there. But anyway, it was a good thing. Wifi, especially FREE, is something that is always appreciated. Keeps one connected online and get to update, check emails as well as surf while traveling.

The service has been offered for three months now, according to the conductor. Service provider is PLDT but I suspect it uses Smart’s Smart Bro system which are installed in their cellsites. Is it seamless? No. During the time I was online, from the Kamias terminal to the Pulilan portion of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), I got cut off twice. Another inconvenience is the jarring movement while on the road.

I really like the service but for a seasoned traveler, is this good? It got me thinking. Do we really need these technological advances even while we’re in transit? If I’m a first time traveler in a particular route, I would not be using the wifi. It will only distract me from appreciating the scenery, unless it is night time. But to think that I’m always connected, at home, at the terminal, at the coffeeshop, at the mall, do I still need to be hooked up even inside the bus?

I can’t answer this myself. I guess, it just depends on the situation. But personally, people who are in transit should just lay off from it. Disconnect. Unhook. Instead, appreciate the views, the smells, or even just read a book or get some sleep.

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.


  1. lakwatsera de primera
    January 21, 2011 @ 17:25

    Wi-fi will come in handy for long day trips especially when I’m going to my hometown which is 10-12-hour bus ride. But for shorter day trips, I’d rather sleep or enjoy the scenery 🙂

  2. thepinaysolobackpacker
    January 21, 2011 @ 17:30

    same with Claire. pero kapag cramming ako at kelangan ko mag-research while on the road to a certain desti kase d ko alam kung saan ako pupunta, helpful yan! 😉

  3. Tweets that mention » Free wifi onboard a bus. Is this good? | Langyaw: Sojourns and Off-the-Beaten Path Travels -- Topsy.com
    January 21, 2011 @ 17:46

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Estan Cabigas, Estan Cabigas. Estan Cabigas said: From langyaw.com Free wifi onboard a bus. Is this good?: Wifi on board the De Leon Express bus that I ro… http://bit.ly/fXrJDG […]

  4. estan
    January 21, 2011 @ 17:55

    yun nga rin, it really depends on the situation. it has its pros and cons. but we really need to be unhooked sometimes. hehehe

  5. nina
    January 21, 2011 @ 22:20

    It depends. My boss prefers to travel to different states in the US prefer buses over flying because the buses have wifi so he can work more instead of wasting time at the airport and waiting for the seatbelt sign to be switched off.

    Personally, I like the convenience of having wi-fi (specially now that I don’t have a mobile phone). I have the choice naman whether to use it or not eh 😉

  6. fetus
    January 22, 2011 @ 6:21

    la namang weefee sina lolo’t lola nakarating naman sa paroroonan. 🙂

  7. josh
    January 22, 2011 @ 10:40

    A terminal of de leon bus just opened across the street from our office here in Dagupan… I’m excited to experience their on-board wifi! 🙂

  8. journeyingjames
    January 22, 2011 @ 14:41

    gusto ko yan pre, kapag nag-live blogging na ako during travels.

  9. estan
    January 22, 2011 @ 19:35

    well, it really is helpful. hahaha

  10. bertN
    January 22, 2011 @ 21:01

    It can’t be bad. It is free!

  11. Mich
    January 24, 2011 @ 10:27

    It is always good to have options. 😛

  12. Mindanaoan
    February 2, 2011 @ 21:18

    I won’t complain kung libre naman 🙂

  13. Christian | Lakad Pilipinas
    February 7, 2011 @ 22:09

    I don’t even want to sleep when in transit, parang nasasayangan ako sa mga di ko makikita =P

  14. estan
    February 8, 2011 @ 0:30

    @christian, same here. dami mamimiss. pero kung the route is familiar, okay lang

  15. beLL
    June 7, 2011 @ 4:54

    im thinking if solid north has site to check route scheds?

  16. estan
    June 11, 2011 @ 22:31

    @beLL, i’m not really sure about that one.

  17. Caroline
    September 30, 2017 @ 18:03

    How much dau pampanga bus teriminal to infanta city in quezon?

  18. estan
    October 6, 2017 @ 15:58

    Please check with bus company

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