BACOLOD to CEBU via DON SALVADOR Complete Travel Guide 2018

This is a complete travel guide from Bacolod to Cebu via Don Salvador. After the success of my first Cebu to Bacolod travel guide, I’ve decided to write this article for those who haven’t experienced traveling to Cebu on a bus yet. This post will not only benefit first-time land travelers but also Cebuanos who are returning to the Queen City of the South. It’s actually the same route as my other guide, just that you’re now going in the opposite direction.

Cebu City has a lot of amazing tourist spots and is known to be a haven for job opportunities. It is a great alternative for Bacolodnons like me who are not willing to work in Metro Manila because of our own personal reasons and interests. For those who are new to Cebu, I hope that you enjoy your stay and if you haven’t decided on a hotel yet, please check out my list of hotels near the Cebu bus terminals.



via Don Salvador
TRAVEL TIME: 7-8 hours
₱585.00 Regular
1:30 AM
3:30 AM
6:45 AM
9:30 AM
12:00 NN
2:30 PM
8:00 PM
9:30 PM
9:00 AM
11:00 AM
2:00 PM
5:00 PM
7:00 PM
10:00 PM
5:00 AM
5:00 AM

First and foremost, please check the Ceres bus schedule and fare above to know which time you’d like to travel and the ticket price. The trip will take around 7-8 hours depending on if you’ll travel by day or night. Please bring a water bottle and some snacks so that you won’t have to buy anything along the way. Also, I suggest you get to the terminal at least 2 hours before your scheduled departure time.

Getting to the South Bus Terminal

The trip to Cebu via Don Salvador starts at the Bacolod South Bus Terminal and there are plenty of ways to get there. You can either ride a jeepney, a taxi, or even a pedicab depending on how far you are. If you are coming from Robinsons Mall, you can ride a Bata or Mandalagan jeepney and when you get to Libertad, transfer to a La Salle jeepney. Tell the driver to drop you off at the Ceres South Bus Terminal. The jeepney fare for regulars is ₱8.50 for the first 5 kilometers.

Bacolod South Bus Terminal

When you arrive at the Ceres terminal, head to the right side or ask the security guards where the line for Cebu City is. If you arrived 2 hours earlier than the scheduled departure time, there won’t be that many passengers queuing. However, if you are traveling on a Friday or weekend night, expect more people than usual.

People lining up for bus tickets

Total Fare

The line will start moving once the bus conductor arrives and starts issuing the tickets. The ticket costs ₱585.00 which includes the bus fare, the ferry ticket (Lite Ferry), and the port terminal fee in San Carlos city. The ticket will cost more if the ferry is FastCat.

If he only charges you ₱565.00, then that means he excluded the port terminal fee which is ₱20 and you will have to pay for that outside the port terminal in San Carlos.

Ceres bus ticket

When the bus arrives, the conductor will shout to alert the passengers that it’s time to get in. Present your ticket to the guard by the bus door so that he can check your seat number and if you are really part of the trip.

Waiting to get inside the bus

Just a quick advice before getting inside the bus:
If you have luggage or a maleta and you think you can carry it on your own, just do it yourself or ask the bus conductor for help. Because there will be certain people at the Ceres terminal who will offer to put your stuff inside the luggage compartment but will try to ask for an unreasonable ‘tip’ afterwards. If you give them an amount below what they requested, they will start to act rudely.

Getting to San Carlos City

When the bus leaves the Bacolod South Bus Terminal, it will travel for about 1 hour and 30 minutes before stopping at an eatery at Don Salvador. Passengers can disembark and go to the restrooms or eat if they’re hungry.

Don Salvador eatery on a rainy night

After 10-15 minutes, the bus will leave the eatery and continue on for another hour or so before arriving at the San Carlos city port.

Once you are at the port of San Carlos, wait until the bus conductor has given you two tickets, one for the port terminal fee and the other one for the ferry ticket. When you’ve received the tickets, grab your important belongings and disembark the bus as you cannot be on it when it enters the ferry. Make sure to remember your bus number then get inside the port terminal and wait with the other passengers.

Inside the San Carlos port terminal

Boarding the ferry in San Carlos

Wait inside the port terminal until someone announces that your ferry has arrived. Make sure that it is your ferry as there could be other ferries like FastCat. To verify this, look around if the people standing up are the same passengers back in your bus.

Exit the port terminal and before getting on the boat, show your ferry ticket to the crew as a sign that you’re a valid passenger. Write your name on the passenger manifest and get inside the ferry.

Lite Ferry

Take a look at your ticket to see which bed number you are. From San Carlos, travel time to Toledo will be about 2 hours so make sure to get some good rest especially if you’re traveling on a night trip.

Lite ferry bunk beds

Arriving at Toledo City

When you arrive at the Toledo port, disembark the ferry and wait for your bus. Try to recall the bus number so that if there are other Ceres buses, you won’t be getting on the wrong one. Get back to your seat and check if your other belongings are still there. Once all the passengers are in, the Ceres bus will now head for Cebu City. Travel time is around 1 hour and 30 minutes but this can take longer depending on the traffic.

If you traveled on the 1:30 am trip from Bacolod, your bus will most likely make a stop first at an eatery in Toledo for breakfast. This will take about 10-15 minutes.

Arriving at the Cebu North Bus Terminal

Cebu North Bus Terminal

And you’ve arrived at your last stop, the Cebu North Bus Terminal. It was a long trip so make sure to stretch and wake yourself up as this is just the start of your journey in Cebu. What you do afterwards, is now up to you. If you’re planning on going to Bantayan Island, check out the Cebu to Bantayan bus schedule or if you are heading to Camotes Island, here is the Danao to Camotes ferry schedule and fare. I hope this travel guide has helped you in any way. Enjoy your stay in Cebu City!

Looking for a place to stay nearby? Check out these hotels near the bus terminals.

Elmer Balbin

Web developer from Bacolod, Google Local Guide, and casual DotA 2 player.

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Leave a comment

John Loot
John Loot

Thank you very much!


thank you for this travel guide to Cebu. it gave me confidence to take the bus this time.


this is very helpful and its so detailed thank you..


Nice Travel Guide


Hi po..can i ask…confused lang me sa time if north bus via don the first it 7am or 9am?thanks po

David Burden
David Burden

I have read a very detailed and comprehensive “timetable and tips.” Thankyou so much for the time you have spent in giving me this information.

Marilou Bracamonte Quijada
Marilou Bracamonte Quijada

This is a big help . Salamat po .

rich chelle
rich chelle

Hello Sir. This guide is very helpful especially for first timers.. We will follow this guide as we will have our trip next week.. Im glad this is updated. 🙂

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