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THE TOLL ROADS APP REACHES 112,000 DOWNLOADS

App in phoneThe Toll Roads’ popular app has reached more than 112,000 downloads, allowing customers to open new accounts and manage existing accounts with ease and convenience using their mobile device.

In May, the entire Toll Roads network (State Routes 73, 133, 241 and 261) will end cash toll collection, so customers who drive on the roads will never have to stop and pay their tolls. All tolls will be paid electronically through five different options: 1) a FasTrak® account 2) one of three new ExpressAccount™ types or 3) the One-Time-Toll™ option, which does not require the driver to have an account and is designed for infrequent users and visitors.

 “With the removal of cash, The Toll Roads’ app is a convenient way for customers to manage their accounts and pay tolls from wherever they are,” said Lisa Telles, chief communications officer at The Toll Roads.

Originally released in May 2012 (version 2.0 was released in February), the app is available for download by accessing the Apple App Store or Google Play Store from a device and, then, typing in “FasTrak” or “The Toll Roads” in the search function. The app allows users to sign up for FasTrak or an ExpressAccount or pay a toll using the One-Time-Toll option within 48 hours after their trip on The Toll Roads.

Customers with a FasTrak or ExpressAccount may use the account management features of the app, including:

  • View account balances
  • Make payments
  • Edit account information
  • Add or remove vehicles, including rental and loaner vehicles
  • Request additional FasTrak transponders
  • Review recent activity.

For the month of February, customers used the app for the following:

  • 828 new accounts (FasTrak or ExpressAccount) were opened
  • 4,259 vehicle updates were made
  • 4,332 payments were made
  • 2,359 payment methods (i.e., updating credit cards on file) were updated
  • 350 people used the One-Time-Toll feature.

For more information about the different account options, please visit thetollroads.com. An ExpressAccount can only be used on The Toll Roads (SRs 73, 133, 241 and 261) and the toll is, on average, 20 percent higher than the toll paid by a FasTrak customer.

FasTrak Drivers: Keep On Keeping On

FasTrak Video ScreenshotIn anticipation of the removal of cash toll collection from The Toll Roads in May, last month we introduced four new ways to pay – three ExpressAccount™ types and a One-Time-Toll™ option. 

What do these changes mean for FasTrak® Drivers?  Nothing.  What do FasTrak accountholders need to do now that there are ExpressAccounts?  Nothing.

  • Keep your FasTrak transponder affixed to your vehicle’s windshield.
  • Keep driving in the FasTrak lanes.
  • Keep paying the lowest tolls (on average 20 percent less than ExpressAccount and One-Time-Toll tolls).
  • Keep replenishing your prepaid FasTrak account using credit card, cash or check.
  • Keep using your FasTrak transponder to pay tolls electronically on ALL tolled bridges, lanes and roads in California (including the 91 Express Lanes).
  • Keep easily managing your FasTrak account online or with The Toll Roads’ free app.

For years roughly 80 percent of our drivers have paid tolls with FasTrak; last month 83 percent used FasTrak.  As we move toward removing cash payment on the roadways, less and less drivers are using cash to pay.  Last month less than 13 percent paid with cash; six months ago nearly 16 percent used cash.

Also last month, we introduced the three new ExpressAccount types and people immediately started signing up for the account type that best fits their needs.  FasTrak drivers now share their lanes with ExpressAccount drivers.  Lower tolls are deducted from a FasTrak account via a vehicle’s transponder and higher tolls are deducted from an ExpessAccount via an image of the vehicle’s license plate.   

Do you have a question about FasTrak, ExpressAccounts, One-Time-Toll or The Toll Roads?  If so, leave it below as a comment.

NEW LIGHTS INSTALLED AT TOLLING LOCATIONS

ENP_4583As The Toll Roads work toward the May removal of cash toll collection on State Routes 73, 133, 241 and 261, proven state-of-the-art tolling equipment is being installed at every tolling location on the 51 miles of roadway.  The equipment supports FasTrak and the three new ExpressAccount payment types introduced in January.

So far, this equipment has been installed at the Irvine Ranch (SR 261), Tomato Springs (SR 241), Orange Grove (SR 133) and Catalina View (SR 73) Mainline Toll Plazas.  Drivers will notice that the lights on the overhead gantries at the tolling points have changed.  Because the ExpressAccount types use license plate numbers – instead of FasTrak transponders – to collect tolls, each vehicle’s front and back license plate must now be illuminated so that a photo can be taken of each.

Formerly, only black and white photos were taken of license plates using infrared lighting to identify vehicles that did not pay the toll.  Now, color images with a greater level of detail are required.   These photos ensure that the correct license plate is linked to the corresponding ExpressAccount.  Changes to California’s standard license plate also made it necessary to begin taking color photos. 

ENP_4750The lights are the same type used on police cars, ambulances and fire trucks around the country as they share the roadway with other drivers.   At The Toll Roads’ tolling locations, the light produces a safe, momentary 200 microsecond flash.  

Over the last seven years, these lights have been installed in more than 500 toll lanes nationwide to support license plate tolling.  Again, we understand that it is not uncommon for motorists to notice the lights when they are first installed, but experience shows that within a couple of weeks of installation drivers grow accustomed to them.

THE TOLL ROADS APP UPDATE FEATURES MORE WAYS TO PAY TOLLS

App in phoneWe’ve released version 2.0 of The Toll Roads’ award-winning app to make paying tolls more convenient. The version’s new functions will make driving The Toll Roads easier after cash toll collection is removed from the roads in May 2014.

The app’s latest update allows customers to sign up for and manage one of the three new ExpressAccount™ types and/or use the new One-Time-Toll™ payment option from their device.  The app continues to allow users to sign up for and manage a FasTrak account.

The app can be downloaded from the Apple App or Google Play Stores by typing “FasTrak” or “The Toll Roads” in the search function.

“The Toll Roads continually seek ways to make our customers’ experience fast, reliable and convenient,” said Neil Peterson, CEO of the Transportation Corridor Agencies (TCA), which operates The Toll Roads. “This latest app upgrade is another innovative way to improve our customer service.”

Customers with a FasTrak or ExpressAccount may use the app’s account management features to:

  • View account balances
  • Make payments
  • Edit account information
  • Add or remove vehicles, including rental and loaner vehicles
  • Request additional FasTrak transponders
  • Review recent activity

TCA was the first toll road operator in the nation to offer an app for toll account management. Since its original release in May 2012, nearly 100,000 customers have downloaded a version of The Toll Roads app.

To learn more about the app, click here.

To learn more about the five ways to pay tolls incurred on The Toll Roads, click here.

WHO WANTS $30 IN FREE TOLLS?

11936738115_2dc5056bd8Drivers on the 73, 133, 241 and 261 Toll Roads in Orange County can get $30 in free tolls if they open a new FasTrak® or ExpressAccount™ on or before March 31.  FasTrak and ExpressAccounts are the fast and convenient ways to pay tolls electronically on The Toll Roads while traveling at highway speeds.

To receive the $30 in free tolls, use promo code FLYER30 when establishing a new account via thetollroads.com or The Toll Roads app, which is available in the Apple App and Google Play Stores.

“We want new customers to know that it pays to be first when you sign up for an ExpressAccount or FasTrak,” said Lisa Telles, The Toll Roads’ chief communications officer. “We’ll be removing cash toll collection soon and $30 in free tolls is a great way to see firsthand how fast and convenient it is to drive The Toll Roads.”

The Toll Roads introduced three new ExpressAccount types last month to give cash-paying customers more choices for how to pay tolls without stopping at toll plazas.  TCA will remove all cash toll collection from The Toll Roads in May. Customers can now pay using a FasTrak, an ExpressAccount or the new One-Time-Toll option that is available at thetollroads.com.

To learn more about the five ways to pay tolls on The Toll Roads, click here.

VIDEOS EXPLAIN BIG CHANGES HAPPENING ON THE TOLL ROADS

Hopefully you’ve heard that cash toll collection is being removed from The Toll Roads in May.  We’ve created a few videos explaining the changes that are happening on the roads.

This video is an introduction to all-electronic tolling on The Toll Roads.  Although we are removing one method of payment (cash), there are now five ways to pay on The Toll Roads.

Watch this video to learn about the three new ExpressAccount types.  With an ExpressAccount, photos of a vehicle’s license plate are used to record transactions and tolls can be charged to a credit card that evening, withdrawn from a prefunded account or invoiced once per month.

Finally, this video explains the new One-Time-Toll payment option, which was created specifically for area visitors and infrequent users of The Toll Roads.  There is no account setup and no transponder, simply drive The Toll Roads and, within 48 hours after your trip, go online or use our free app to pay tolls.

And, remember, for FasTrak drivers the conversion to all-electronic toll collection will be seamless and uneventful.  FasTrak accountholders don’t have to make any changes to their accounts with the conversion.

GET $50 IN FREE TOLLS!

With cash toll collection being removed from The Toll Roads in May, now is the time to sign up for FasTrak® or an ExpressAccount™ and cash in on $50 in free tolls.  

To receive $50 in free tolls, simply sign up for a new account with The Toll Roads, then start a new subscription with The Orange County Register or the Long Beach Register.

 OC Register LogoHere’s how:

  • Sign up for a new ExpressAccount or FasTrak account at thetollroads.com or using our free app;
  • Keep your account name and number handy;
  • Call The Registers at 866-710-1150 and mention offer code TOLLROAD or visit: ocrsubscribe.com/tollroad;
  • Enter your Toll Road account name and number on the notes/comments page; and
  • Enjoy $50 in free tolls!

Already have FasTrak or an ExpressAcount?  You can get $50 in free tolls, too, when you start a new Register subscription.  Just follow steps two and three listed above to receive this exclusive offer.

Fine print:  Offer valid from January 1 through February 15, 2014.  Free tolls are non-refundable.  Free toll offer not good on other California toll facilities.  The $50 in free tolls will be applied to the account within 60 days or by April 15, 2014.  Home delivery of print copy only available to Register delivery areas.  Offer valid for new Register subscribers only, must not have been a subscriber within the last 30 days.

NEW EXPRESSACCOUNTS LAUNCHED AT PRESS CONFERENCE

Yesterday, The Toll Roads introduced three new ExpressAccount payment options to the public at a press conference attended by board members, elected officials, community leaders, stakeholders, drivers and the media.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 12.49.30 PM

In May, cash toll collection will be removed from The Toll Roads.  While we are removing one method of payment, we are introducing four new ways to pay.  Three of those are called ExpressAccounts.

The New ExpressAccounts – New Ways to Pay Tolls Without Stopping

With the new, transponder-free ExpressAccounts, images of a vehicle’s license plate taken on The Toll Roads are linked to an account and the appropriate toll is collected.  When customers sign up for an ExpressAccount, they may choose one of three payment options:

  • Prepaid – Customers open an account with a prepaid balance and tolls are deducted from the amount whenever they use The Toll Roads.
  • Charge – At the end of each day, customer’s tolls are charged to the credit card on file for each trip on The Toll Roads.
  • Invoice – Customers are sent an invoice at the close of the month for tolls incurred that month; no need to use a credit card or link to a bank account. This account type includes an invoice fee.

ExpressAccounts can only be used on The Toll Roads (State Routes 73, 133, 241 and 261) and the toll is on average 20 percent higher than the toll paid by a FasTrak customer.

The fourth new way to pay tolls is called One-Time-Toll.

One-Time-Toll: For Visitors and Infrequent Users

A payment option has been designed for infrequent toll road drivers and visitors. “One-Time-Toll” allows out-of-town guests and tourists to use The Toll Roads without establishing an ExpressAccount or a FasTrak account. These customers may use The Toll Roads at their convenience and pay their tolls within 48 hours after driving the roads in two convenient ways: 1) visit http://www.thetollroads.com to pay online or 2) download The Toll Roads mobile app and pay easily from their mobile device. The mobile app for One-Time-Toll will be available on Feb. 1, 2014.

Already 81 percent of the daily trips on The Toll Roads are paid electronically with FasTrak®, the transponder-based electronic toll collection system used by tolling agencies throughout the state of California.  Currently, 16 percent are cash transactions.  When asked, cash customers say they would like a variety of ways to pay tolls and a nonstop, stress-free experience on The Toll Roads.

FasTrak: Still Lowest Tolls

Customers with FasTrak, which uses transponder technology affixed to a vehicle’s windshield, will continue to pay the lowest tolls and may be used on all toll roads, lanes and bridges throughout California.  FasTrak customers won’t have to make any changes to their accounts when cash collection ceases on The Toll Roads.

REMINDER: YOU’RE INVITED TO OPEN HOUSE LAUNCH OF NEW EXPRESSACCOUNT TYPES

EVENT REMINDER:  There are big changes happening on The Toll Roads (State Routes 73, 133, 241 and 261).  Starting in May, you will no longer be able to pay tolls with cash on The Toll Roads.  While we are eliminating one way to pay, we’ve introduced four new methods of payment that were developed for drivers by drivers.

Now, there are five ways to pay tolls on The Toll Roads:

  • FasTrak®
  • Charge ExpressAccount
  • Prepaid ExpressAccount
  • Invoice ExpressAccount  
  • One-Time-Toll

You’re invited to an Open House to commemorate the launch of the three new ExpressAccount types. 

WHAT: Come hear about the ExpressAccount types and sign up for the account that is right for you!  

WHEN:Wednesday, January 15, 2014, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

WHERE: 125 Pacifica, Irvine, CA 92618

FREE TOLLS: Anyone who signs up for an ExpressAccount at The Toll Roads Customer Service Center in Irvine on January 15 will be entered to win $50 in free tolls.

RSVP: Feedback-thetollroads@thetollroads.com or call (949) 754-3482.  

Visit our recently-refreshed website to learn more about FasTrak, ExpressAccounts and the switch to all-electronic toll collection.  And, join the other drivers who are looking forward to non-stop travel and more payment choices on The Toll Roads in 2014.

THE TOLL ROADS 2013 ANNUAL REPORT

The Toll Roads and Transportation Corridor Agencies Fiscal Year 2013 (FY13) Annual Report on financials is now available.

At $260,223,000, revenues were up collectively and for each of our two agencies.  The number of FasTrak® accounts increased, as did the number of transponders that we have in California vehicles.  During the year, 80 million tolls were paid and 85 percent of those tolls were paid electronically.  We ended the year with $523 million in reserve funds. 

In FY13, we welcomed a new chief executive officer, chief financial officer and 14 new Board Members who are leading the agencies and The Toll Roads with a focus on customer service; building direct connections from The Toll Roads to local freeways to advance regional mobility; working diligently to find an alternative to Interstate 5; and offering Southern California drivers an express choice that is predictable, saves time and reduces stress.

Click here to view the audited financial statements for each agency. 

FINAL Infographic SocialMediaAR13