Toll roads in Europe: fare and differences from free roads
The advantages of toll roads in the EU are primarily that they have a better surface and allow you to get to your destination faster. Here are the main differences between toll roads and free roads and how to avoid fines
Traveling by car in Europe is a great solution for those who want to enjoy the scenic views and make their own route through the desired locations. However, you should take into account not only the sights, but also highways and toll roads.
Which European countries have toll roads?
Almost all EU countries have toll roads, so it's easier to say where they don't. Currently, Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, and Monaco have not introduced toll roads.
Lithuania and Latvia have toll roads for trucks weighing more than 3.5 tons.
Differences between EU toll roads and free roads
Toll roads often have free alternatives. However, traveling on them will be slower. Toll roads in Europe have the following advantages:
- High quality of the road surface;
- no traffic lights and left turns;
- a safety barrier installed in the middle of the road.
It is easy to distinguish toll roads, because they are marked with special signs. Usually, the sign contains the highway number and information that the road is tolled. Keep in mind that this information is written in the language of the country where the sign is installed. In English, toll roads are indicated by the word "Toll".
Some signs have special electronic devices attached to them that are designed to register the passage of a car in order to automatically withdraw funds from the driver's bank account.
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Paying for toll roads: where and how to do it
There is no single approach to toll collection. Each country establishes its own approach to road tolls. The following methods are used in European countries:
- Payment at toll booths set up at the entrance or exit of the road;
- purchase of a vignette - a sticker to be glued to the windshield;
- purchase of an electronic vignette;
- payment through online services.
Currently, electronic vignettes and online services are becoming popular among drivers.
You can pay for toll roads in Poland at etoll.gov.pl.
For Czech roads, you can buy a vignette on the portal edalnice.cz.
How much does it cost to travel on toll roads?
Each European country sets its own tariffs. The cost is also affected by the class of the vehicle. Please note that on some roads, the driver will pay for a certain distance, on others - for the time of use, and it is also possible to pay for driving across a bridge or tunnel.
On average, the prices for toll roads in Europe are as follows:
- 7-15 euros for a 10-day vignette for cars;
- 6-7 euros for traveling 100 km;
- from 1-2 euros to 50-60 euros for bridges and tunnels.
Fines for free travel
It's almost impossible to avoid paying the toll, but those who do will face a hefty fine. First, checkpoint employees control the payment, and second, police officers can check the driver.
Offending drivers face fines of up to several hundred euros:
- Austria - from 120 euros;
- Bulgaria - 153 euros;
- Poland - 500 zlotys;
- Romania - from 53 euros;
- Slovakia - from 140 to 700 euros;
- Slovenia - from 300 to 800 euros;
- Hungary - from 46 euros;
- Czech Republic - from 196 euros if paid on the spot;
- Switzerland - 180 euros.
For a comfortable trip, you need not only to pay for toll roads, but also to have a valid insurance policy. To travel abroad, you need a so-called "Green Card" - a policy that compensates third parties for damages in the event of an accident. Buy an insurance policy online here.
Our recommendation for a safe and comfortable trip:
Visit Ukraine Insurance - insurance for a safe stay abroad without unnecessary expenses;
Green Card - compulsory car insurance for traveling abroad;
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