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Old 03-14-2019, 11:59 AM   #1
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Houston Help

This has to be the dumbest thing I've seen in my life. Traveling in and around Houston as a visitor is virtually impossible without the massive cleanup afterward.

1) Planing to stay at the Eastlake RV just inside of the beltway (Rt. 8, 1 o'clock looking at the map)
2) HCTRA (their toll authority) wants me to set up an account for 3 days! Seed it with $40 and ??? on getting a refund on money not used.
3) My plates have a + and - in them and their app does not support those characters so I cannot register my MH and Tow car.
4) Coming down from Dallas. My wife wants to see the George HW Library.

So, I either just drive through as if everything is free and wait for the bill in the mail (which I will not get for another 60 days when I get home) and hassle over the penalties and fines (as the Campground told me will happen) or bypass Houston all together and consider it stupidity gone wild! Great for tourism!

Any advice would be helpful! Thanks
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Old 03-14-2019, 12:16 PM   #2
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I feel your pain, we had the same situation about a month ago headed to San Antonio from South Carolina. I chose to bypass around to the north west bound and bypassed to the south via the Galveston ferry east bound. Problem solved.

Good luck!

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Old 03-14-2019, 12:29 PM   #3
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Yup.... Coming down from Dallas and wanting to go East after our visit is very difficult. Houston makes it very hard if not offensive to visitors. Maybe they do not want people like us there, visitors..

I got a response back from HCTRA re special characters entering Plate # and they ignored the problem. Appears the numbskulls that created the app used Texas rules as universal. Stupid. Now I have to figure out how to bypass Houston. My wife wants to see the GHW Bush library in northern Houston area but I cannot figure out, yet, how to get back on Rt. 10 without being funneled through the Houston gauntlet.
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Old 03-14-2019, 01:14 PM   #4
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Why not stay at Rayford Crossing in Spring? And as long as it is not rush hour. I-45 south to I-10 west is not bad.
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Old 03-14-2019, 01:41 PM   #5
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I agree with Jake, Rayford Crossing is a nice spot. I've stayed there and liked it. It will also let you take I-45 to I-10, not a bad section outside of rush hour.

If you need to take a toll road you can do that and wait several days, then login to HCTRA and pay your "missed tolls" with a credit card and they only charge about $1.75 service charge for the whole transaction (not per toll). I've done it before. They don't charge a violation fee till some time passes, so you'll have a chance to use this method. The link is half way down the main page, in the middle "Pay for Missed Tolls". Maybe the special characters in your plate will prevent it from ever getting recorded. :-P
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Old 03-14-2019, 02:32 PM   #6
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:02 AM   #7
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Why not just avoid the toll roads around Houston, I know it is getting harder to do as they keep building more and more ez-pass only toll roads, but navigating around houston on the free road system is still possible.
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