Cashless toll payments using RFID signal the first of a three-pronged move to step up the transport of people and cargo along the expressways, according to the Department of Transportation.
The cashless transactions also referred to as ‘toll interoperability’ are expected to be completed on or before December 1 as mandated by regulators who have been pushing for this system since 2017, DOTr Assistant Secretary Goddess Hope Libiran told mediamen.
The second phase will come into play and it entails the use of two digital wallets to activate the unified RFID (radio frequency identification), Libiran said. This means that motorists will need to buy a load for each system to be able to activate the RFID which are supposed to be readable in either north or south expressways.
Phase three simplifies the whole process as it means only one wallet and one RFID for a motorist to clear the toll gates, Libiran said.
Motorists using the tollways have gained some sort of reprieve as the DoTr and its attached agency Tollways Regulatory Board have reset the deadline for the installation of RFIDs on their vehicles from Nov. 2 to Dec. 1, 2020.
The deadline will no longer be extended beyond this date, TRB Executive Director Abraham Sales said.
DoTr allowed the extension in order to give motorists, especially infrequent toll road users, more time to comply with the RFID requirement and to prevent the long queues currently being experienced at toll roads in the rush to get the RFID stickers, Sales said.
The TRB said the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation and the San Miguel Corporation are equipped and ready to implement the Order but have respectively extended the installation of RFID stickers beyond November 2, 2020.
The DOTr earlier issued Department Order 2020-012 which ordered the full implementation of cashless toll collections at the expressways and major toll roads in the the government’s bid to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), and to avoid traffic congestion in toll plazas.
Motorists who do not conform to the government mandate will be apprehended and issued a citation ticket.
DOTr Assistant Secretary for Road Transport and Infrastructure Mark Steven Pastor reminded motorists to make use of the extended deadline to have RFIDs installed in their vehicles as early as they can.
Vehicles purchased beyond December wil need to have RFIDs installed by the owners although some car dealers offer RFID stickers as part of their extra-services to their clients, according to some automakers.