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Unified European Toll System On Its Way

  Posted at 02:00:00 PM
  File under  Travel
  Author: Mike Werner
  Location: Normandy, France
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One of the advantages proclaimed by the politicians for a unified Europe was the ease of travel between member states; no passports, same currency, etc. Although partially true (since not all member states adopted these rules), one area had not been unified: toll systems.

If you travel through Europe on your motorcycle (or car or truck), each country has its own toll system (some countries even have different systems depending on the region). This means that if you use one of those fast-pass systems, an electronic system that allows you to pass through the toll gates quickly and then get billed later, it would not work in other European countries.

Motorcycle toll booth

The European politicians spent some time (and lots of our money) thinking about it. In between their many meetings, lunches, study trips and probably hookers, they devised a plan. They called it European Electronic Toll Service Open Ec.Europa link in a new window (EETS).

Under Directive 2004/52/EC and the related Commission Decision 2009/750/EC, the new service specifies the way things get passed on to member states, the duties and rights of the toll companies etc. These "laws" have been in place for many years now, and so far nothing has happened. The companies running the tolls just did not want to cooperate, citing incompatibilities. Often they were centered around the type of vehicle; in one country a motorcycle is considered a motorcycle, while in other countries, it's considered for toll purposes a car.

Now the European Union has deemed that a test project should go underway to convince all other countries that this is a project that will work. Austria, Italy, France, Spain, Germany, Denmark and Poland will work together in producing a unified toll system that allows a vehicle equipped with an electronic pass system to pass through the toll gates in other countries.

The new EETS will allow individual member countries to specify specific tolls per vehicles, even levy extra tolls on foreign vehicles (like what Germany is planning).

This means that if you plan to travel through Europe on your motorcycle, you'll no longer need to dig in your leathers for some change to feed the toll booths. You just ride through them.

Or better yet, just avoid toll and motorway roads....

Click here to read about the technicalities of the EETS Open Click here to read about the technicalities of the EETS link in a new window

Via: Motoblog

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