By Cheri Sicard
A universal toll pass that works on all U.S. toll roads would make RV life so much easier!
Have you been frustrated by the jumbled mess that is America’s toll road system? I never used to be until I hit the Midwest and East Coast. (Although California is starting to get trickier, too.)
I try to avoid toll roads, personally. Unless there is a way to pay on the spot, but sadly that is becoming less and less common.
It’s not that I’m cheap, it’s that I’m forgetful.
My problem is that if I don’t have the proper transponder, I forget to go online and pay the toll and I end up owing more in the long run.
Transponders make it easy as they pay the tolls automatically and electronically. But they aren’t ideal for travelers.
First off, the transponder situation for toll roads in the USA is a tangled and intertwined mess. So unless you only travel in one specific area that uses one type of transponder, you are going to find it frustrating.
For nomads, the toll road transponder situation gets a lot more complicated. Some transponders work with some others, but not all.
People who travel a lot could easily end up with a box full of transponders and still not be covered in all situations.
Sure, there are middleman services. But who wants to pay a monthly charge on top of the toll charges? And those charges rack up regardless of whether or not you used toll roads in any given month.
Universal Toll Pass
In the video below, the folks from Changing Lanes dove into the subject of universal transponders, an almost mythical accessory at this point as the world has been waiting so long for them.
They found a solution that works most of the time. At least 18 Eastern states—and 18 down to one cuts down on a lot of transponders and makes toll roads infinitely easier to navigate.
No, we are still not 100% fully covered everywhere, but things have improved and are getting closer. This video focuses on the UNIpass Universal Toll pass and what it can and can’t do.
The video is two years old and 18 states were onboard then. It has now increased to 19. Hopefully, before too long this will truly be a universal toll pass. But for now, it’s better than most.
The program is run through the Central Florida expressway, but you do not need to be a Florida resident to take advantage of it. The transponder comes with a one-time $14.95 charge. Tolls paid through the transponder are less expensive than pay-as-you-go. And you’ll never have to wait in line at a toll booth.
What do you think?