If you still haven’t secured RFIDs for your vehicles yet, then take note: There will be no further extension of the current December 1 deadline, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) confirmed in a recent statement.
The agency said that the contactless payment system is “long overdue,” reiterating that the main purpose of the policy is to reduce the risks of COVID-19 transmission on major tollways. The DOTr also said that interoperability of the RFID tags will “merely provide added convenience” to motorists and is not necessary for the implementation of the cashless system.
The agency’s statement further read: “Any delay in its implementation amid the COVID-19 pandemic will only make motorists, as well as the personnel manning the toll plazas, vulnerable to unwanted and unnecessary physical contact, and hence, exposure to the deadly coronavirus.
“With the issue of interoperability aside, the extension of the deadline for the implementation of cashless toll collections on toll roads to December 1 will provide motorists using the expressways ample time to have their vehicles equipped with the needed RFID stickers from the toll operators.”
The DOTr, however, also clarified that it will continue to work towards achieving complete interoperability of all RFID tags. Phase 2 of its Toll Interoperability Project—which is supposedly set to commence mid-2021—will enable the use of one RFID sticker for two different accounts, much like how Autosweep tags can now be used along Easytrip-serviced tollways.
The third and final phase, meanwhile, will entail the use of one RFID sticker with a lone account along all tollways. No timeline has been given out for that as of this writing.
So, there you have it, motorists. You can check out some of our previous stories to read more about this entire RFID fiasco, including everything you need to know about this complete shift to cashless transactions. We’re weeks away from December, so take note—lest you get ticketed for entering the tollways without an RFID past the deadline.