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The new pain in the butt for drivers - paying tolls by mail

Anyone else having to pay by mail? I’m not a big fan of these $4 bills. And the threatening tone of the bills that if you don’t pay your $4, all sorts of bad things will happen to you. It’s a big help as far as traffic flow goes, but an annoyance after the trip is done.

And, yes, I know I could set up some sort of account with these yayhoos. I feel it’s a pain to have to manage two other accounts (because the tolls are with separate companies) for a couple trips a year. I figure these accounts will get thrown in the pile with all the other accounts and frequent shopper cards and the like that I’ve lost track of over the years.

In April I was in Virginia in a rental car. I got a notice from the rental car company that my credit card was being charged a 50 cent toll and a $18 service charge. I have no problem with the rental car company. I don’t like the unmarked or boothless toll roads.

In October I was 100 miles from my home in Clearwater FL. and somehow generated a 75 cent toll. FDOT sent a bill for 75 cents with a return envelope. I could provide the stamp and a check. Instead I paid on line with no credit card fee. How does FDOT think this is cost efective?

The East coast of Florida has many unmarked toll roads and lots of tourists. I have heard that some rental car companies charge a service fee for each toll. That could get expensive.

I was wondering how rental companies handled tolls. I’m hoping they take the obvious path and put EZpass transponders in every rental. Could be built in so it can’t be stolen. Seems the obvious way to go.

This becomes more important in the trend to toll roads with no toll booths, such as the MA pike. Sticking users with large service charges is bogus.

All systems were suppose to be reciprocal by Oct 2016, but the beurocrats are dragging their feet. I have E-Pass which is good in the SE but not NE.
Hopefully the different agencies will get off their butts and fix it.

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I got in the Ipass lane during construction, missed tolls could be paid online, I tried but because my plate was out of state I could not. I never heard anything, and that was 3 or 4 years ago. I had to go to a funeral a few years ag, and bought an Ipass for the 5 tolls, I think it was $1.20 per toll with the Ipass and over $3.00 if you paid cash.
@Ben_T_Spanner I have never seen unmarked or boothless toll roads, CRAZY.

National does that. When I travel to Boulder, CO for business, I use the toll road around the north side of Denver, and the rental cars have toll transponders. No toll booths, BTW, just remote sensing.

We have an EZ Pass transponder and only use it when we go to my BIL’s house. We do that every couple of months, and now that we have it, we are glad we do.

I have an electronic tag on my cars, I never use the toll roads on my motorcycle, however, I learned the hard way to remove the license plate of any vehicle you sell to someone.

The entire MA pike is that way, as is the Tobin bridge. They are marked, but if you don’t have the transponder, you get sent a bill in the mail. It’s called “open road tolling”, ie, you never have to slow down for a toll booth.

Somehow I don’t see a big problem. I just click on my bank bill pay section, put amount in and they mail a check. Our bank takes .50 cents out each time and transfers to our savings account. Once a year we receive an amount based on those transfers. No hassle, no stamps and bonus money.

Even less work for me. They automatically charge my credit card on a need basis. If the account drops below some threshold, they add $10 or so to it.

no toll booths, no hassle, great system.

Why not just stop and pay the toll when you’re driving through?

Um… because you can’t. Toll booths have been removed at both places we travel a couple times a year. You either set up some account (or accounts, if you have different toll roads or bridges in different parts of the country) or they take a picture of your plate and send you a bill. I’m guessing that if you have an account, you also have some sort of transponder or other mechanism to tell them it’s you.

If you have an account set up the toll might be, say, $1. If you have to pay by mail it is more expensive, say, $3 or $4.

I’d not thought about the rental issue - glad someone brought that up.

It’s not that obvious right now for the rental companies. EZPass does not work everywhere. Once some sort of common system for tolls gets set up, it will be much easier; I’d get something set up if I didn’t have to keep up with multiple systems and accounts.

All the East Coast tolls I’ve run across use EZPass. I don’t believe it would work in CO, but it’s a long drive and not a problem for most. The toll is $6 one way from Denver International to the end of the toll road near Boulder and I would think twice about paying that if I wasn’t on an expense account.

As noted by others already, this system allows states to move toward open road tolling with no tollbooths. I’d very much rather do a bit of work to get a transponder and set up an account instead of having to deal with continual stops at tollbooths.

As for rental cars, people do need to read the terms closely there. From what I remember in the past, if you use their transponder or pay-by-plate service, there’s typically a service fee assessed for every day of the rental, even if you use it only once, so that can make for a very expensive single use. I bring my own transponder to avoid this.

It does appear that steps are still being taken toward interoperability, although it’s slow and overdue. Just recently, E-Pass in Florida announced that they now accept E-ZPass, so that’ll help Orlando visitors from the Northeast, although there are still some SunPass facilities in that area that don’t take E-ZPass yet.

My pet peeve is that transponder designers and car designers haven’t gotten together to design a compartment attached to the rear view mirror to hold the transponder neatly.

Ahh, I see. Toll roads aren’t that common out on the west coast. We have a few bridges though. I used to live near the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. When they added a toll to use it you have the option of just driving through and having the transponder track you and bill your account accordingly or stopping at a booth and paying the toll.

There are also a number of toll lanes on freeways that are open to carpools or those with transponders wishing to travel faster and pay a toll.

Just get a transponder. I’ve got the iPads for a couple trips a year. It’s about a ten dollar deposit and tolls are half price. Won’t work in Minnesota though or Florida. The problem now is lots of exits don’t take cash so you either have an account or pay by mail which I a are hassle. Took me about an hour once figuring out which booth I went through for the 50 cent payment.

Years ago, my brother was hitchhiking and caught a ride with a couple of.beatniks driving a VW. When they came to the toll bridge crossing the Mississippi River from Rock Island, Illinois to Davenport, Iowa, the beatniks decided to not pay the 10¢ toll and run the toll booth. They got away with it.

Congress passed a bill that would make all systems reciprocal by Oct 2016, beurocrats are still dragging their feet.

Beatnick, showing your age, actually I remember from the doby gillis show, Happy memories.

Had a cool car though