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Old 09-15-2021, 05:00 PM   #1
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Texas Toll Roads

Just a note for those who are not Texas residents and might be passing through Texas.

We were on our annual trip to South Padre Island about 5 weeks ago when our navigation software, which was set to avoid toll roads, took us onto a Texas toll road. Strangely enough, after directing us to take the exit and guiding us onto the road, it told me that I was on a toll road and had set options to avoid them.

Much to my surprise there were no actual toll booths (I guess Texas has moved into the 21 century) so I could not pay the toll while we were driving and I assumed that since it was only a single trip on the toll road (which we avoided when we returned) that was probably the end of it. Not so fast, as I just got a bill in the mail for the RV and the toad. $7.00, so I did not think they would bother, but they did. They do make it easy to pay online with a credit card.

Two lessons. First, you may not be asked to actually pay a toll at a toll booth (although I don't know if this road (SH 550) is typical, but you may well get a bill even if the amount is really small. Second, the toll roads are very nice.
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Old 09-15-2021, 05:12 PM   #2
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I am very unfamiliar with toll roads as we never drive on them or have any around us. We went to Corpus Christy last year to Gulf Waters and then headed up to Oklahoma going straight through Texas. We ended up on several toll roads even though not planning on them and I had no idea how to pay or what to do so we just kept going. I figured they would send me some bills but to this day we have received nothing. They do have some nice roads once you can get through all the road construction that seems to go on everywhere in that state.
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Old 09-15-2021, 05:19 PM   #3
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Recently bought a K-Tag from Kansas. Works on toll roads in: KS, OK, TX and with the account the fees are less $$. If you have a K-Tag on a MH and Toad, you'll be charged twice, thus I removed mine from the toad when towing. Another option is to cover it with Aluminum Foil according to K-Tag.com
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:41 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 530ktm View Post
I am very unfamiliar with toll roads as we never drive on them or have any around us. We went to Corpus Christy last year to Gulf Waters and then headed up to Oklahoma going straight through Texas. We ended up on several toll roads even though not planning on them and I had no idea how to pay or what to do so we just kept going. I figured they would send me some bills but to this day we have received nothing. They do have some nice roads once you can get through all the road construction that seems to go on everywhere in that state.
If you are a non-resident and only show up on toll roads a few numbers of times, Texas will not charge you.

They let us get by for 6 months before we finally got a bill.

But for general pass-through as out of staters, just take the toll roads. They are faster and nicer and at no charge.






NTTA spokesman Michael Rey said via email that out-of-state drivers are not immune from tollway bills. Their license plate must first have enough activity on North Texas toll roads to justify sending an invoice, which will be either after three transactions or $2.50 in tolls.
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Old 09-15-2021, 09:43 PM   #5
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What we did find: Texas tolls are cheaper than the fuel to avoid. Avoiding them required lots of stop and go vs just passing through.

Do take that into account as fuel prices rise.
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Old 09-16-2021, 07:06 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by ByeTheWay View Post
Recently bought a K-Tag from Kansas. Works on toll roads in: KS, OK, TX and with the account the fees are less $$. If you have a K-Tag on a MH and Toad, you'll be charged twice, thus I removed mine from the toad when towing. Another option is to cover it with Aluminum Foil according to K-Tag.com
We use the TXTag and get the same, TX< KS< & OK.
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Old 09-16-2021, 07:19 AM   #7
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I also picked up a TexasTag. In going thru that process, I recall seeing that they are preparing to join the EZ-Pass system. Hoping that happens soon.
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Old 09-16-2021, 07:52 AM   #8
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I'll add that there is even roadside assistance on Texas tollways.


I'm a resident near Dallas, and I've noticed the same thing about "avoid tolls" on navigation software. It's happened so often it almost makes me think something is up or there is a kickback involved somewhere. There are several tollways just in the DFW area... and don't get stuck taking an express lane unless you really want to pay for it.
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Old 09-16-2021, 08:39 AM   #9
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I had the same thing once. Guided onto a toll road when setup was avoid tolls.

I later heard about the hour plus delay on the route I should have taken. The GPS had traffic so maybe I was rerouted.
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Old 09-16-2021, 08:47 AM   #10
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NY does the same. Helped my son move there last year, and one of the roads was a toll road. We got a bill in the mail a couple weeks later.
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Old 09-16-2021, 09:17 AM   #11
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Some of the toll roads have axle counters, so they pick up anything you are towing. Others do not and you need to go through the assistance/cash lane if there is one.

Some of the toll roads have a sign posted that they will toll by mail and there is an extra fee. We have seen a few that post that they do not toll by mail. They only want properly tagged vehicles. Some we have to call and give them out TXTag number and we are towing a trailer with the license number on this date and they bill accordingly.

Love that they are all so consistent in their procedures. We have never gotten a "free" ride on the Texas Toll roads. My guess is they could not read the tag on your vehicle.

We use the TXTag for Texas, OK and KS.

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Old 09-16-2021, 10:19 AM   #12
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I just got a $70.00 toll bill for one trip on the bypass in Denver, Colorado. That equates to about $2 a minute. Considerably higher than anything I’ve gotten in Texas. There is one on the north side of Houston that used to be in a different system that was pretty steep.
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Old 09-17-2021, 09:23 AM   #13
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i don't know if texas toll roads have changed. back in 2018 we were north of houston and took hwy 99 south to bypass the city. electronic toll system. after we stopped for the night i called texas tolls to find out how to pay, they told me that i would get a bill in the mail. i did get the bill which i paid. 4 months later i get a notice from a collection agency stating that i owed $246.00 for non payment. the notice stated if i didn't pay the penalties, texas would not renew my plates. i called the number and was told they sent me a bill once a month for 3 months and then turned it over to the collection agency. i told them i could understand if one piece of mail was lost, but not 3. they were not budging, so i paid the bill. someone told me later that 2 companies ran the toll system. i don't know if that is true, but it sure sounded like a scam to me. anyway, i will not drive on texas toll roads anymore
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Old 09-17-2021, 10:05 AM   #14
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bwanna, used to be that the south end of 99 was run by Fort Bend county and the rest run by Harris county. Fort Bend was a real bunch of horses rear ends on the tolls. I had to fight them over supposedly uncollected tolls when I had a toll tag that they recognized. I had to send them copies of the Harris County Toll Road Authority statements showing I had the tag in effect at the time I supposedly did not pay their tolls. It took months to straighten out and they had turned it over to a collection agency. It finally settle and it away after I complained to the States Attorney General office.

They picked up the tag from the truck and claimed that they could not access the Harris county system to see if I had a tag. Even though I was in discussions with them, they turned it over to the collection agency.

Government agencies have a hard time admitting that they are wrong.
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