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Please don't smoke in a public vehicle

Updated on November 3, 2011

In the Philippines, smoking in a public vehicle is definitely illegal. Yet, smokers sometimes try to challenge this law, as well as the patience of non-smokers.

If you have ever ridden in a jeepney, you know how very inconvenient it becomes when an inconsiderate co-passenger hops on with a cigarette in his hand.

How do I react? Often times, I directly ask the man to please throw his cigarette away because I cannot breath. "Ma, nakakahilo na po dito sa jeep. Pwede po ba'ng 'wag na kayo magsigarilyo dito?" Sometimes I notice a lady passenger would hold her breath, awaiting the smoker's response. The smoker often takes a final puff before flipping the cigarette away. I then promptly thank him. "Maraming salamat po." One can hear the held breaths finally released.

In the rare instances that the smoker smugly (nay, arrogantly) pretends he didn't hear my request, I will tug lightly at his sleeve, and ask more emphatically, looking straight into his eyes. Fortunately, I have never had to confront anyone who needed a third request to stop smoking in a public vehicle.

There were instances too that the culprit was the driver himself, who you know can be very defiant. That's when I brace myself, and ask a second time. When that's unsuccessful, I bring out my ever reliable spiral notebook and pen, and start writing details of the incident as I ask him, in a no nonsense tone of voice, for his name, plate number, and mentioning the jeepney's route. "Ok, route Project 6 to Kalaw. Ano po ang pangalan nyo? Plate number ng jeep na ito? .........." (Ok, route from Project 6 to Kalaw. What's your name? Plate number?....). Sometimes, the passenger nearest the entrance, extends his body out, to look at the plate number. However, I have never had to continue with more questions, nor actually report the incident to the LTO. (But I would really have, in worse circumstances). The driver flips the cigarette away. Again, I thank him with a smile (smirk, hahaha).

I noticed that it just takes some guts to speak out and request a smoker not to smoke inside a public vehicle. And of course, the request works when one shows the respect while asking so.


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    • profile image

      jeremy 8 years ago

      I've tried just about every method there is out there and there is only one I can recommend - NLP! It eliminates the cravings.

      Gum patches and all the other just did not cut it for me, not to mention cold turkey which was the hardest, I even tried the electric cig and it is just no match to the real thing.

      Check out this article:

      it’s the one that got me off the cigs and smoke free for GOOD even without gaining weight! :)

      Good luck kicking the habit!

    • vikkycab profile image

      vikkycab 8 years ago from Quezon City, Philippines

      Hi Jamirdesign. It would seem women have more charm than men. Perhaps it's in the way the request is made, in my case, with respect but with no-nonsense authority. But as I said, I wouldn't know how to react when the smoker would need a third reminder. Of course, it's unlikely that a male smoker would hit a woman who asks him to throw his cigarette away.

    • profile image

      jamirdesign 9 years ago

      This is nice! I would like to share some incidents happen when my friend ask for a guy to stop smoking because they're in the jeepeney. With no question ask the guy punch my friend in the face. How would you react that?

      I post and share some Tobacco Regulations in my Blog - coz' I'm too eager to BAN smoking in all area here in the Philippines.

      Please help me out guys! Thanks.

    • vikkycab profile image

      vikkycab 9 years ago from Quezon City, Philippines

      Hello Charmaine, just use your simple charm dearie. It does helps to act a little, with a confident voice. Or perhaps, my age too had some bearing hahaha. Of course, I was wary about how those guys would react, or continue to pretend they didn't hear my request. Who knows, I would probably have reported the incident via the LTO hotline, or written about it in my blog. Everyone deserves a fair reminder, right.

    • vikkycab profile image

      vikkycab 9 years ago from Quezon City, Philippines

      You're so right (wedding consultant). Second hand cigarette smoke isn't any better than first-hand smoke. Many cigarette smokers don't really want to smoke. They just NEED TO because it has become an addiction. (I did used to smoke a lot -- 2 packs a day. I opened another hub just on quitting smoking.). Please accept my personal congratulations to you and your wife for your coming little one. Babies always light up the world with love and hope.

    • profile image

      charmaine_zp 9 years ago

      Thanks ate vikky.. Yes, nakakaloka nga when I ride a bus or jeepney and someone starts puffing smokes. Nakakaloka at nakakahilo. I just wish I had your guts. Hehe.

    • WeddingConsultant profile image

      WeddingConsultant 9 years ago from DC Metro Area

      I was agreeing with you even before I read your hub (but after I read your title)! Great concept. It's always frustrating for me when my wife and I are going places and we smell cigarette smoke for extended periods of time. It's frustrating enough that we breath it in, but our unborn baby also absorbs some of that!