Toll Rate FAQs

 

 

 

What are the toll rates?

  •  TollTag rates are 16.16 cents per mile effective, July 1, 2013, as part of a scheduled biennial increase, which was announced in 2009. The rates are aligned with the regional toll rate adopted by the Regional Transportation Council in April 2006.
  • ZipCash rates on all toll roads are 50 percent more than TollTag rates. The premium reflects the higher cost of collection associated with ZipCash.

What is covered by the tolls I pay?

  • Tolls go directly toward high-quality maintenance of existing tollways, construction of new roads, and the NTTA’s customer service and safety programs.
  • Tolls are a direct fee paid for the use, operation and maintenance of a roadway.
  • Tolls are used to repay bonds that are sold to finance and construct projects. 
  • Tolls are used to fund and advance roadway expansions to accommodate continuing traffic growth.
  •  Tolls are helping North Texas bridge the funding gap between transportation needs and available resources.
  • Toll road users benefit from a higher level of service, including better maintenance, which translates into improved driving conditions and vehicle maintenance cost savings.

How are the rates determined?

  • Using an equitable influence-distance-based tolling system, the rates are closely aligned to the miles driven. The farther you drive between tolling points, the more you pay per trip.Rates are reset every other year on July 1.
  • Rates are 16.16 cents per mile as of July 1, 2013, with small, incremental changes planned as follows:
    2015  $0.1706 cents per mile
    2017  $0.1801 cents per mile

Are the rates based on the actual distances traveled?

  • NTTA’s toll roads do not use a controlled-access system where you receive a ticket as you enter and exit the roads. Rather, the NTTA uses influence-distance-based tolling, which makes calculated determinations about how far a driver travels.

What is influence-distance-based tolling?

  • It is a more equitable tolling system that reflects the distance you travel rather than a set fee per ramp or main lane plaza. The farther you drive, the more you pay.
  • The rates are based on the “influence distances” between tolling points. An influence distance is the longest distance someone can travel before encountering another tolling point. Once the influence distance is determined, it is multiplied by the per-mile rate. For example, the influence distance on a roadway begins at the first main lane toll gantry (overhead tolling equipment) and ends at the next.  There is no overlap.
  • The influence distance typically extends to a point on the roadway where the next main lane influence distance begins (i.e., they don’t overlap). For an entry/exit ramp rate, the distance is measured to the cross street just before an entrance ramp or after an exit ramp.

Why are tolls charged even after the road is completely paid off?

  • In addition to repaying bonds, tolls pay for ongoing road maintenance and customer service programs.  NTTA builds its roads to high standards with your safety and your vehicle’s maintenance in mind.  This also helps ensure that today’s roadways will be built and maintained to provide convenient access for generations to come.
  • It’s much like your car loan.  Even when you pay off your car, you still have ongoing maintenance costs, such as oil changes and tire rotation, to keep your car running smoothly.  You may occasionally run into unexpected costs for repairs if you have a fender bender or flat tire.  And of course, insurance is required as well. 
  • If tolls were eliminated permanently, there would not be other funds available to maintain the roads in their current smooth, safe and high quality manner.
  • The transportation needs of our region continue to grow as more and more people move to North Texas. As long as drivers need additional mobility choices and the nation, state and region need help funding them, toll roads will remain an option.

Why do we need more toll roads?

  • NTTA has been asked to step up and, in essence, fill the gap where state (gas tax) funds are not available.  The NTTA does this through the ongoing collection of tolls.
  • To meet the transportation needs of North Texas. The Texas Legislature and regional transportation officials have made a policy decision to rely on toll roads as a way to advance much-needed mobility projects. They set the policy, and the NTTA implements it.

Why charge a toll when I pay gas taxes to build and maintain roads?

  • Gas taxes, vehicle registration fees and other taxes support TxDOT projects, not NTTA tollways. Rather, NTTA toll roads are funded largely through the sale of bonds that are repaid by collecting tolls from motorists who use the road. 
  • Tolls are used for the operation and maintenance of the roadways. The Texas Legislature and regional transportation officials have made a policy decision to rely on toll roads as a way to advance much needed mobility projects.
  • Some studies also say toll roads actually can decrease the pressure to increase the gas tax or free up gas tax dollars for other projects. For example, the $3.2 billion NTTA paid for the right to operate, construct and maintain the Sam Rayburn Tollway is being used throughout the region to fund many municipal and county projects.
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What is the advantage of having a TollTag?

  • A TollTag has more impact than ever – you will save more money. ZipCash rates are 50 percent more than TollTag rates, reflecting the higher cost of collection. TollTags also may be used on any toll road in Texas, and accounts opened with credit cards also may be used for parking or pass-through at D/FW International and Dallas Love Field airports. D/FW International Airport also offers a terminal and pass-through discount for TollTag customers.

How does a TollTag account work?

  • Accounts may be opened with a $40 pre-paid balance when you submit your TollTag application (cash, check or credit card). The $40 balance is good for up to three TollTags, and there is no monthly fee. The NTTA deducts the exact toll amounts from your account each time your TollTag passes through an operating toll lane.

How do I get a TollTag?

  • Opening or managing a TollTag is just a click away at our Online Customer Service Center.
  • Visit the NTTA Customer Service Center at 5900 W. Plano Pkwy. in Plano, or call us at 972-272-NTTA (6882)
  • The NTTA also partners with local municipalities, ACE Cash Express and other retail locations to provide hundreds of convenient TollTag service locations throughout the Metroplex.  A complete list of TollTag distribution locations and their services is available at Customer Information Section. Visit a participating ACE Cash Express to open a cash-backed TollTag account, pay ZipCash invoices and replenish accounts.  To open a credit-backed TollTag account, visit one an NTTA Regional TollTag partner located at local municipal offices and retail centers.

Does the NTTA offer discounted toll rates for veterans?

  • The NTTA greatly appreciates the service of the millions of honorable men and woman who have served our country in the armed forces, and we are grateful for the sacrifices they and their loved ones have made. The 81st Texas Legislature passed HB 3139, which allows for the creation of a veterans toll discount program by a local toll authority; however, no funds were appropriated for such a program. Currently, NTTA does not offer discounted toll programs, but our staff is evaluating the legislation to determine the financial, legal and operational impacts of implementing a veteran toll discount program. If the Board of Directors chooses to implement a discount program for veterans, staff will advise the appropriate TollTag customers, veterans groups and other military organizations.