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Thursday, July 8, 2021

Skyway Stage 3 Vs EDSA: Do You Actually Save Money?


With San Miguel Corporation moving to collect toll for Skyway Stage 3, several motorists quickly balked at the idea of having to pay hard-earned cash just to avoid the traffic hell known as EDSA. Truth be told, that reaction is instinctive because P 264 is quite pricey. Or is it?

The best way to look at this scenario would be to crunch the numbers; after all, numbers don’t lie. Would taking the elevated 18-kilometer expressway be better, money-wise, than sticking with the tried-and-tested EDSA or even C5 if you prefer to go off-roading on the truck lane?

Before heading to the computations, some assumptions need to be established. First up, this model only takes into account the amount of money saved on fuel. This doesn’t take into account the increased wear-and-tear on vehicles when driving in stop-and-go-traffic; the stress of having to deal with scooters, cyclists, and buses (or a mix of all); and of course, the value of time—time that could have been used for family, work, or Netflix.

Second, we only factored in the 18.83-kilometer stretch of Skyway Stage 3 and compared it to the same 18.83-kilometer stretch on EDSA (Osmena Highway corner EDSA to NLEX Balintawak is actually 17.6 kilometers based on Google Maps). Removing distance as a variable makes it easier to compare these two routes vis-à-vis each other.

Third is the fuel economy. For this scenario we’ll be using three vehicles. The first is the Toyota Hilux 2.4 AT, one of the most popular vehicles in the country. It also happens to have a published WLTP or Worldwide Light Vehicle Test Procedure figure. Based on this, the pickup truck has an “extra-high” fuel consumption figure of 9.25 km/L versus a “low” consumption figure of 12.34 km/L. Its “medium” fuel consumption figure is 10.63 km/L. For the cost of fuel, we pegged it at P 42 per liter. For kicks, we’ll also compare it to an SUV known for its unquenchable thirst—the Ford Expedition. Using its U.S. EPA rating, it does 8.92 km/L in the city and 11.47 km/L on the highway. We also included a hybrid as well, in this case, the Lexus NX300h that does 14 km/L in the city and 12.75 km/L on the highway. In these cases, the price of unleaded is at P 55 per liter.

With those factors in mind, taking Skyway Stage 3 may not be such a good proposition if the sole basis is how much money you’ll save. Using the Hilux, you definitely save more money on fuel (P 64 on Skyway versus P 85 on EDSA), but it’s not enough to offset the P 264 toll. You end up shelling out P 243 more each time you get on the elevated expressway—and that’s under the heaviest traffic conditions (extra-high fuel consumption versus low fuel consumption). The difference just goes up when traffic’s lighter on EDSA. The situation’s the same with the Ford Expedition where you lose P 238 one-way taking Skyway 3 (fuel cost is P 90 versus P 116). It’s worst of all in a hybrid (remember, they’re designed with stop-and-go traffic in mind) with a P 271 difference (fuel cost is actually higher on the Skyway at P 81 versus P 74 on EDSA).

This begs the question: will you ever save money as far as Skyway Stage 3 concerned? Well, yes. You likely won’t be able to recoup the cost of toll with a hybrid, but with a Hilux and an Expedition, you can. Using the Hilux, you’ll need to be averaging less than 2.4 km/L on EDSA for Skyway Stage 3 to make financial sense. It’s more plausible in a Ford Expedition. If you average 2.91 km/L crawling on EDSA, you’re better off taking Skyway Stage 3 altogether.

While you might not be able to save money using Skyway Stage 3, you will definitely save time. For its part, San Miguel has repeatedly touted Skyway Stage 3 as a game-changer because it cuts the travel time from SLEX to the entrance of NLEX in Balintawak to just 20 minutes (57.66 km/h average). Meanwhile, for EDSA, you would be crawling at speeds between 16 km/h which is 2019’s average speed (pre-pandemic) and 28 km/h, 2020’s average speed (during pandemic), these figures, in case you are wondering came from the MMDA.

See the computations below:



15 comments:

  1. Thanks, excellent article! Saved me the time crunching the numbers myself.

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  2. that is why I will ride for the whole day this weekend using skyway, to and fro... and never again on monday when toll fee starts to be implemented.

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  3. You save time, you save money. That's the bottom line if you are working or on business.

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  4. can you crunch numbers if the toll fare is 264 and you get only 100 cars using the SKW3 than 132 pesos with 200 cars using it. ultimately Smc is trying to recoup profits by imposing a high tollrather than a lower one with a denser capacity

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    Replies
    1. SMC could earn more fr higher users at lower rate and gradually even more when its becoming more practical

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  5. bumili nako sa shopee ng airplane. isa sa father ko, isa sa mother, isa sakin, isa sa sister in law, isa sa aso ko, isa sa kabit ko, isa sa asawa ko, isa sa liniligawan ko at isa ulit sakin. wholesale naka discount ako ng 10 pesos.. SHOPEEE NA!

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  6. does anyone know the toll rate from skyway alabang to Quezon Blvd

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    Replies
    1. Alabang to DonBosco exit to go trough Quezon Blvd is 168

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  7. Let us say that it does still cost 200php even after fuel savings each direction to use SS3 from makati to A boni or araneta avenue (and vice versa).

    As long as i save approximately an hour each direction, i think it is well worth it.

    You could also just cut down on the daily "starbucks budget" if you are so inclined to actually one.

    Money, you can earn what you spend for the most part. But time is something you will never get back once spent.

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  8. Sabi nga ni Mar Roxas dati na ang traffic is a sign of progress ng bansa ������

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  9. Time is gold, can't buy back time.

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  10. For me it's a big concerned. Every new road that will ease traffic or that can save time that was being built in Metro Manila will always meant you have to pay a toll fee. What happened to the road tax were paying?? And all the other tax were paying? Does the Government always leave it to Private Company to built it??

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