Â RVers and other travelers planning to drive to Miami or the Florida Keys
starting in February should get ready for big changes and easier
travels when paying tolls on Florida’s Turnpike.
Beginning in mid-February, all Turnpike tolls will be collected
electronically between Exit 47 and Exit 1 in Miami-Dade County.
Motorists will use either SunPass, or TOLL-BY-PLATE, and everyone will
pay tolls without having to stop, according to a news release.
Travelers will still be able to pay cash on all other segments
of Florida’s Turnpike, from its northern point at I-75 in Wildwood to
its junction with I-95 in north Miami-Dade.
SunPass is Florida’s prepaid electronic toll collection system.
The system utilizes small, credit card size electronic devices, called
SunPass transponders, which attach to the inside of car windshields.
When a SunPass-equipped vehicle goes through a tolling location, the
transponder sends a signal and the toll is deducted from the customer’s
TOLL-BY-PLATE is a toll collection method, for customers
without SunPass, which takes a photo of a vehicle’s license plate as it
travels under tolling equipment installed overhead and mails a bill for
the tolls incurred over a 30-day period, plus a $2.50 administrative
charge, to the registered owner of the vehicle.
Travelers also have the option of establishing a prepaid
TOLL-BY-PLATE account by calling (888) TAG-TOLL and providing a credit
or debit card, to avoid the administrative charge.
For those traveling in a rental vehicle, there is an easy and
convenient way to pay tolls without stopping. Most rental car companies
have programs that allow their customers to charge the tolls to the
credit card being used to rent the vehicle. Motorists should check with
their rental car company for details. For information about
participating rental car companies, go to www.SunPass.com/rentalcar.
Removing cash toll collections will improve safety by
eliminating driver decisions about lane choice. All-electronic toll
collection is quicker and there are no lines. It also benefits the
environment by reducing air pollution and fuel consumption.
While cash tolls will only be removed on the southern 47 miles
of Florida’s Turnpike this coming February, the entire Turnpike system
of roadways eventually will go to all-electronic tolling. It is
anticipated the next phase, from the Golden Glades interchange in
northern Miami-Dade County to the I-595 interchange in Broward County,
will be ready in 2014.
SunPass is the most cost effective way to pay tolls
electronically. Customers pay the lowest toll rates and generally save
25% on tolls, when compared to cash or TOLL-BY-PLATE customers.
The SunPass Mini transponder is pretty much free … costs $4.99
reimbursable as a toll credit when registering the SunPass account. It
is available at Publix, CVS/pharmacy, Navarro Discount Pharmacies,
Sedano’s Supermarkets, all AAA locations in Florida, all Turnpike
service plaza gift shops and gas stations, www.SunPass.com and at (88)
For more details about the February 2011 launch of
all-electronic open road tolling on the southern 47 miles of Florida’s
Turnpike, go to www.FloridasTurnpike.com and click on the green
“all-electronic” button or call (800) 749-PIKE.