List of Road Markings in the Philippines and their Meaning

Road markings consist of visual symbols and lines painted or applied on road surfaces to convey essential information to drivers and pedestrians about lane usage, merging, traffic regulations, and accident prevention. They serve multiple purposes, including directing traffic flow, defining lane divisions, marking pedestrian crossings, signaling hazards, and designating specific areas like bus or bicycle lanes.

Road markings are essential for conveying meanings, offering clear instructions, and guiding drivers to navigate roads safely, preventing accidents, and complying with traffic laws. This article explores the common road markings on Philippine roads, along with their significance and implications for all road users.

road markings in the philippines and their meaning

Common Road Markings in the Philippines

Road markings serve as crucial elements of road infrastructure, conveying vital information to both drivers and pedestrians through their placement on the road surface. Utilizing durable materials like paint or thermoplastic, these markings feature diverse shapes, colors, and patterns, each carrying a distinct significance and purpose.

The different types of road markings include:

  • Longitudinal Lines (Lane dividers)

Longitudinal lines refer to markings on the road that run parallel to the direction of traffic flow. These lines are used to separate lanes, indicate prohibited areas for overtaking, and guide drivers safely along the roadway.

  • Traverse Lines (Intersection markings)

Traverse lines, such as stop lines and give way lines, are pavement markings that indicate specific points where vehicles must stop or yield to other traffic, enhancing safety and regulating traffic flow at intersections and pedestrian crossings while facilitating orderly movements.

  • Other lines (Special purpose lines)

Other lines encompass various pavement markings that serve specific purposes beyond traffic regulation. These include markings for parking bays, loading and unloading zones, “Do Not Block” intersection lines, turn lines for guiding vehicles during turns at intersections, and designated lanes for buses and public utility jeepneys (PUJ). 

  • Object Markings (Hazard warnings)

Object markings typically refer to visual cues or symbols painted on or adjacent to the roadway to indicate the presence of objects such as islands, median strips, bridge piers, or other obstructions to provide advance warning of potential hazards on the road.

  • Raised pavement markings 

Raised pavement markings are physical elements installed on the road surface, such as reflective cat’s eyes or rumble strips, designed to provide tactile and visual feedback to drivers, alerting them to changes in road conditions or potential hazards ahead.  


Knowing and following road markings offer the following benefits:

  • Reduces risk of vehicular accidents
  • Promotes safety for all road users
  • Helps avoid costly fines and penalties, 
  • Helps avoid potential damage requiring expensive vehicle repairs

List of Road Markings Commonly Used in the Philippines

Here’s a list of the common road markings found on Philippine streets/roads/highways:

White Lines

White lines on the road typically indicate lane boundaries, dividing traffic flows in opposite directions or separating lanes traveling in the same direction, reminding drivers to stay within their lanes for safety.

1. Solid White Shoulder Line


Meaning: Denotes the edge of the roadway, indicating that vehicles should not encroach beyond this line during normal operation.

Implication: Drivers should stay within the designated roadway and avoid using the area beyond the solid white line.

2. Diagonal White Lines


Meaning: These lines, bordered by solid white lines, designate areas outside the roadway proper. Vehicles are expected to refrain from entering these areas except in emergencies.

Implication: Drivers should avoid occupying spaces delineated by diagonal white lines, maintaining clear passage for emergency vehicles and ensuring smooth traffic flow.

3. Solid White Center Line


Meaning: Divides traffic on multi-lane roads, indicating separate flows of traffic in opposite directions.

Implication: Overtaking is discouraged over solid white center lines, and drivers should maintain their respective lanes to prevent collisions with oncoming traffic.

4. Broken White Center Line


Meaning: Marks the center of a two-lane road or separates lanes on multi-lane roads, allowing for overtaking or lane changes when safe to do so.

Implication: Drivers may cross broken white center lines when overtaking or changing lanes, exercising caution and yielding to other vehicles as needed.

5. Double White Center Lines


Meaning: Indicates areas where overtaking is prohibited. Left turns are permitted if the road is clear, but right of way is granted to oncoming traffic.

Implication: Drivers should refrain from overtaking across double white center lines and exercise caution when making left turns.

6. Solid White Horizontal Line


Meaning: Indicates stopping points at intersections or traffic lights, ensuring orderly traffic flow.

Implication: Drivers must come to a complete stop behind solid white horizontal lines and proceed only when safe to do so.

7. Solid White Lane Divider


Meaning: Reminds drivers to stay within their lanes, particularly near intersections.

Implication: Drivers should adhere to lane discipline and use turning lanes appropriately to facilitate smooth traffic flow.

Yellow Lines

Yellow lines on the road generally signify restrictions or warnings for drivers. They can indicate no-passing zones, delineate lanes reserved for specific vehicles such as buses or bicycles, or warn of potential hazards like curves or intersections.

1. Double Yellow Center Lines


Meaning: Signifies hazardous conditions where overtaking is prohibited at all times.

Implication: Drivers must avoid overtaking over double yellow center lines, particularly in areas with limited visibility or fast-moving traffic.

2. Solid Yellow Lane Divider


Meaning: Identifies bus lanes or bicycle lanes, restricting access to designated vehicles.

Implication: Private vehicles should refrain from entering bus or bicycle lanes to ensure safety and compliance with traffic rules.

3. Broken Yellow Lane Divider


Meaning: Allows vehicles to merge into bus lanes or prepare for turning off major roads.

Implication: Drivers should exercise caution when merging into bus lanes and yield to buses as required.

4. Yellow Box


Meaning: Designates intersections that must be kept clear at all times to facilitate traffic movement.

Implication: Drivers should avoid entering yellow boxes unless they can clear the intersection completely, preventing traffic congestion and ensuring smooth traffic flow.

Other Lines, Signs, and Symbols

Other lines on the road serve various purposes, including guiding traffic flow, indicating parking or loading zones, and highlighting pedestrian crossings, ensuring efficient use of road space.

1. Mixed Center Line with Broken White Line


Meaning: Allows overtaking from one side indicated by a broken line while restricting overtaking from the other side with a solid line.

Implication: Drivers should only overtake from the side indicated by the broken line, ensuring clear visibility and yielding to oncoming traffic.

2. Directional Lane Arrows


Meaning: Indicates permissible directions of travel within lanes, guiding drivers on lane usage and turning maneuvers.

Implication: Drivers must follow directional arrows to comply with traffic regulations and avoid violations.

3. Broken Blue Lane Divider


Meaning: Designates lanes reserved for motorcycles, promoting safer travel for motorcyclists.

Implication: Drivers should respect designated motorcycle lanes and yield to motorcyclists when using these lanes.

4. Mixed Double Lane Divider


Meaning: Restricts lane changes from one side while allowing merging from the other side.

Implication: Drivers should observe lane restrictions and merge safely when transitioning between roads or lanes.

5. Rumble Strips


Meaning: Alerts drivers to hazards such as sharp curves or merging traffic, prompting them to reduce speed and exercise caution.

Implication: Drivers should heed warnings provided by rumble strips and adjust their speed accordingly to avoid accidents.

6. Zebra Crossing


Meaning: Marks pedestrian crossing zones, requiring drivers to yield to pedestrians and refrain from stopping over the crossing.

Implication: Drivers should stop behind zebra crossings to allow pedestrians to cross safely and avoid traffic violations.

7. Cat’s Eyes 


Meaning: These are raised pavement markers typically embedded in the road surface, often used to enhance nighttime visibility for drivers by reflecting headlights. 

Implication: Cat’s eyes provide visual guidance and warning to drivers, especially in areas with low-light conditions, poor visibility, or adverse weather conditions.

8. Parking Bay  


Meaning: Designates designated space for parking.  

Implication: Indicates areas where vehicles are permitted to park, facilitating organized parking and preventing congestion.

9. Loading and Unloading Bay Lane Line  


Meaning: Indicates the proper location for loading and unloading zones of public utility vehicles, typically with parking restrictions.  

Implication: Helps ensure efficient loading and unloading operations while minimizing traffic disruptions.

10. Speed limit at 60KPH  


Meaning: These pavement markings supplement the speed limit signage posted on the roadside, indicating a maximum speed of 60 kilometers per hour.  

Implication: By clearly indicating the speed limit, these markings help enforce traffic regulations, promote safe driving practices, and reduce the risk of accidents caused by excessive speed.


Some of the penalties associated with failure to follow road markings include:

  • Disregarding traffic signs (DTS) or specific colored lines, except for yellow bus lanes along EDSA, incurs a PHP 1,000 fine for all offenses according to MMDA’s penalties.
  • Reckless driving carries the following fines:
    • PHP 500 fine for the first offense
    • PHP 750 for the second offense with a license suspension
    • PHP 1,000 for the third offense resulting in a license revocation
  • Illegal or unauthorized counterflow results in the following:
    • PHP 2,000 fine plus a 3-month license suspension for the first offense
    • PHP 2,000 plus a 6-month suspension for the second offense
    • PHP 2,000 plus license revocation for the third offense


In essence, reading road markings is an important skill for both new and veteran drivers, yet it’s one that even the authorities painting them often seem puzzled by where they should actually go. By understanding these common road markings, you as a driver or other type of road user can help regulate traffic, improve road safety, and facilitate efficient transportation systems.

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