personal finance

Pay double toll without FASTag: Here's how to get it, charges applicable

If you do not have a FASTag, then get ready to pay double the toll fees at toll plazas on National Highways from midnight tonight. “To further promote fee payment through digital mode, reduce waiting time and fuel consumption, and provide a seamless passage through fee plazas, it has been decided that all the lanes in the fee plazas on National Highways shall be declared as ‘FASTag lane of the fee plaza’ with effect from midnight of 15th/16th February, 2021,” said the road transport and highway ministry in a statement issued on Sunday.

So, any vehicle without a FASTag, or an invalid FASTag entering into the FASTag lane would be liable to pay two times the fee applicable at the toll plaza.

The ministry had mandated fitment of FASTag in M and N categories of motor vehicles with effect from from January 1, 2021. However, the deadline was extended till February 14 by the ministry on December 31, 2019.

If you are someone who does not have a FASTag yet for their vehicle, then here is how you can get one and the charges applicable.

What is FASTag?

FASTags are prepaid rechargeable tags for toll collection that allow automatic payment deduction from the FASTag, they are normally affixed on the windscreen of your vehicle. With the help of a FASTag, you will not have to stop your vehicle at toll plazas to pay the toll. As soon as the vehicle crosses the toll plaza, the toll fee will get deducted from the bank account/prepaid wallet linked to the FASTag affixed on the vehicle’s windscreen. An activated FASTtag works on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. Moreover, these FASTags do not have any expiry date, that is, they can be used as long as they are readable at the toll plaza and are not tampered.

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How can you buy a FASTag?

You can buy a FASTag on the spot at various points of sale (PoS). The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has set up 40,000 PoS. You can also order online via banks and e-commerce platforms like Paytm and Amazon.

You will have to share the original registration copy of your vehicle to buy a FASTag as the tag registers all the details of your vehicle in the electronic form. It must be linked to your bank or a prepaid account from where the toll fee can be deducted.

For instance, you can order it on PayTM by paying Rs 350 and it will be delivered to your address within few days. Once you receive the tag you have to stick it to the windscreen of your vehicle typically at the top middle part.

Whenever you cross a FASTag enabled toll plaza the toll fee would be automatically deduct the toll fee. In case your tag is not valid or you do not maintain balance you will end up paying penalty.

Around 75% of toll collected on National highways is now done through FASTags. In November 2020, FASTag users in the country breached two crore-mark, registering a growth of 400% in a year, as per NHAI.

What are the charges for FASTag?

FASTag issued by certified banks can charge maximum of Rs 100 for each tag, which is fixed by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). Apart from this one has to pay a non-refundable deposit amount which varies for different types of vehicles.

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How to recharge your FASTag

If the FASTag is already linked with your bank account, then there is no need to load money separately in a prepaid wallet. You only need to ensure that your FASTag-linked bank account has sufficient balance to allow for toll payments. However, if you have linked the FASTag to a prepaid wallet (NHAI prepaid wallet), then it can be recharged through various channels such as payment through cheque or through UPI/debit card/ credit card/ NEFT/ Net Banking. Also, additional charges will be levied while recharging the FASTag account through different channels.


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