If you're going across the Bay Bridge next month, you'll need an E-ZPass or cash. Cashless tolling will be discontinued as the toll plaza gets revamped.
Drivers used to have three options on the way to and from the beach: paying by cash, using an E-ZPass transponder, or getting a bill in the mail. At the end of January, only the first two options will remain as the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) discontinues the cashless toll program.
The MDTA hopes that by simplifying the tolling system to the automated E-ZPass sensors and limited cash lanes, the flow will be much smoother as visitors head to and from the beach. The hard part will be getting the word out to visitors from out of town who are unsure of which lane to use.
Part of the work being done is the removal of toll booths so that more of the lanes can be devoted to E-ZPass users. Historically, the majority of drivers on the Bay Bridge use this method of payment, so the lanes will reflect the need for more sensors and fewer manned stations for cash.
The cool thing about using an E-ZPass lane is that you drive right on through without stopping or slowing. Be prepared to pass through by making sure your transponder is property mounted on your dashboard or windshield.
You can stay on top of the most recent updates by checking the MDTA Twitter account. For more information about changes at the Bay Bridge, visit the MDTA Facebook page. They're pretty active there if you post questions or concerns, so don't be shy!
**The photos in this article are courtesy of the MDTA Facebook page.
What do you think about this change in the tolling process at the Bay Bridge? Will it help or hurt with the congestion during peak travel hours? Sound off in the comments!