To enable faster travel time and allow more motorists to bypass long queues at their toll plazas, the operators of South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) and Metro Manila Skyway will enforce an “exact toll fee” policy via dedicated lanes to be opened at toll plazas effective December 15.
The move is expected to significantly improve the flow of traffic in these areas, usually caused by long waiting times at cash toll booths, especially during the Christmas exodus out of Metro Manila that starts to peak in December.
“We see this move as greatly benefitting our motorists especially this Christmas season. By implementing this policy, we hope that more motorists will make it a habit all year round to prepare the exact toll and use these express lanes, so they don’t have to spend more time than they need to, lining up at the toll plazas,” said Manuel Bonoan, president and chief executive officer of Skyway O&M Corp. (SOMCO). SOMCO and South Luzon TollwayS Corp. (SLTC) are the operators of the Metro Manila Skyway and SLEX.
Bonoan said they will also deploy more ambulant tellers at the highways’ busiest toll plazas to further move traffic during the holidays.
Motorists can also pay their toll fees via off-site payment kiosks at select Petron and other service stations along SLEX to avoid the expected long queues at the exit toll plazas.
Unlike a previous iteration of the exact toll lane policy, the SLEX and Skyway operators made it clear that motorists who do not have the exact toll but who accidentally queue up at the special lanes, will still be given their change. They will, however, cause delay and hold up other motorists using the express lanes.
“We very well understand that it will take a bit of adjustment from the public. But sometimes, all it takes is a slight change in mindset to solve even the biggest problems,” Bonoan said.
The exact toll booth scheme is meant to complement the existing e-pass electronic toll collection system and the more efficient, soon-to-be introduced radio frequency identification (RFID) technology-run electronic toll system, which are aimed at modernizing and improving the toll payment system and making travel on the expressway more efficient for motorists.
“We are confident that in no time, motorists will see why this makes sense and why all of us need to contribute to, and support, this effort,” Bonoan said.