New I-PASS Transponder Regulations Mean Twice the Tolls to Violators

I-PASS Is Requiring Users to Have A Transponder Per Vehicle To Avoid Paying Double

James Haberstich, Editor

People from all over the state of Illinois frequently use toll plazas and open toll roads to get around, and many of them use an I-PASS, in order to save more money in the long road. For a long time, having one I-PASS transponder and using it for multiple vehicles was common. However, the Illinois tollway is encouraging a new proposal that will help more people save money while driving on toll roads.

An I-PASS transponder. Photo credit to Illinoistollway.com

The proposal is still in development, but the main premise is to encourage each I-PASS user to have a transponder that correlates to each of their vehicles (Dailyherald.com). It is not necessary to buy new transponders, however. Dan Rozek, Sr. Manager of Communications for the Illinois Tollway, has stated that one transponder can be shared with multiple vehicles, as long as the transponder is in the vehicle being driven on the tollway and all the vehicles used are linked to the same I-PASS account. The only certainty, according to the tollway, is that “As of Jan. 1, no transponder, no discount,” (Dailyherald.com). This “discount” is actually just a term for the I-PASS rate, which is half of the cash rate of toll costs (Dailyherald.com).

Many people are wondering why the tollway is pushing this new proposal, as the old system seemed to be doing the job just fine. Mr. Rozek has stated that there a few reasons for this change. Firstly, Rozek stated that the tollway wants to encourage more and more drivers to take advantage on the fifty percent discount that using an I-PASS on tollways provides. Secondly, Rozek also stated in regards to administrative costs, it costs three times as much for the tollway to make a transaction using camera footage as it does to make a transaction with an I-PASS transponder. Lastly, Rozek stated that if more customers use the transponders, it will lower administrative costs, and it will keep toll costs at a stable rate.

One of the many toll roads in Illinois. Photo credit to Wjbc.com.

Getting a new transponder is a very easy and low-cost process, as they are available for a ten dollar refundable deposit as stated by Rozek. In order to purchase the transponders, you can either order them online with an I-PASS account on the Illinois Tollway website, by phone at (800) UC-IPASS (800-824-7277), a  local Jewel-Osco store, or a tollway service center (Dailyherald.com).