If you didn’t know this, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has said that from December 1, 2019 all toll payments have to be done by using FASTags. The programme, under the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC), is being implemented across India to remove traffic bottlenecks on highways and to ensure seamless movement of traffic. The FASTags can be used at all toll plazas on all national highways across the country.
At the toll plazas on national highways, every vehicle that passes through FASTag lanes without the tags will be charged twice the toll amount. Note that there will be one hybrid lane. This is be the only lane where the usual toll will be charged from non-FASTag vehicles. Other modes of payment can be used when the hybrid lane is used.
Want to get FASTag? Here’s what you should know.
What are FASTags?
FASTags are prepaid tags that are rechargeable. The tags allow automatic payment deduction from the FASTag account for paying tolls. Vehicle owners affix the FASTag on the windscreen of their vehicle.
When you have FASTag on your vehicle, you don’t need to stop your vehicle at toll plazas to pay the toll. When your vehicle crosses the toll plaza barrier, the toll fee will get automatically deducted from your FASTag account. All FASTags do not have any expiry date. You can use them as long as they are readable at the toll plaza.
How does FASTag work?
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) devices have been provided to the toll plazas. These RFIDs will be able to scan the chip on the FASTag sticker affixed to the vehicle’s windshield. The data on the chip will be read by the RFID device when the vehicle approaches a toll plaza. After the data is read, the toll fee will be debited from the FASTag account automatically.
How to get FASTag?
You could visit the official website of any of the financial institutions like ICICI Bank, State Bank of India, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, Paytm Payment Banks and e-commerce platforms like Amazon to apply for FASTag. Want to get your FAStag offline? The registration for the FASTag chip could be done at the Point Of Sale plazas in tollways or at bank branches.
You will need to provide your vehicle’s Registration Certificate (RC) and your KYC (Know Your Customer) details to the bank. The details will be then uploaded to the system. You will pay for the tag, security deposit and top-up to get your FASTag. Here are the steps you need to follow to apply for FASTag online.
• Visit the official website of any authorised FASTag agent
• Search for ‘Get FASTag’ / ‘Apply for FASTag’ link and click on it
• Provide your mobile number
• You will receive an OTP on your mobile number
• Enter the OTP and click on Submit
• Provide your personal details such as your name, address, email id etc.
• You will then need to give your vehicle details. This will include the type of vehicle, registration number etc.
• You have to upload documents such as the scanned copy of your vehicle’s RC.
• After providing all the details, review them before submitting the filled application form.
• Submit the form
• You will be redirected to online payment gateway where you need to pay the FASTag charges
• You will receive the FASTag receipt and payment receipt. Save them.
What are the charges for FASTag?
To promote FASTags, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is now providing FASTag stickers free of cost. NHAI will be bearing the security charges of Rs 150 till December 1, 2019. However, you will need to recharge it with your money to use the FASTag.
If you decide to apply for FASTag after December 1, you will need to pay a onetime fee of Rs 200. The re-issuance fee is Rs 100 and the refundable security deposit will be Rs 200. The security deposit will vary depending on the type of your vehicle.
How to recharge the FASTag account?
You can link your FASTag account to your prepaid wallet or your bank account. Then, the money will get debited automatically from your bank account or NHAI’s prepaid wallet. There will be no need to load the FASTag account separately. You only need to ensure that your FASTag-linked bank account or prepaid wallet has sufficient balance.
Note that if you have linked the FASTag to NHAI’s prepaid wallet then you could recharge the account through various channels such as Unified Payments Interface (UPI), debit card, credit card, NEFT or net Banking. You could use cheque payments too. However, you will need to pay additional charges while recharging the FASTag account through different channels.
Banks like ICICI Bank have their own FASTag page where you can get your login details to recharge your account. There will be no additional charges if you use your ICICI bank account to recharge the FASTag account.
After getting the tag, you could download the ‘My FASTag’ app on your phone to get alerts on the toll amounts debited from your FASTag account. Using the app, you can link your FASTag account with any one of your existing bank accounts. The app allows you to use the NHAI prepaid wallet facility too. On the app, you can load money in your wallet and your toll fee will be deducted from the prepaid wallet instead of getting directly debited from your bank account.
How to activate the FASTag account?
There are two ways you can activate your FASTag account.
FASTag is based on DIY (Do-It-Yourself). So, to self-activate your FASTag account. Just provide your vehicle details in the ‘My FASTag’ mobile app and activate it.
Since FASTags are ‘agent-neutral’, you can use any online platform to activate your account. This means that just because you got your FASTag from a bank at the time you purchase, you don’t need to choose the same bank to activate it.
Activation using the bank branch
For the activation, you will be required to submit your KYC documentation as per the KYC policy of the bank.
Note that you cannot use one FASTag account with two or more vehicles. You will need to buy separate FASTag stickers for each of your vehicles.
Are there any discounts?
According to the Indian Highways Management Company Limited (IHMCL) website, “If you reside within a range of 10 km from the toll plaza, you can avail a concession on toll to be paid via your FASTag. In such a case, you need to submit the required documents – proof of residence at the bank, nearest POS location to validate that your address is within 10 km of a particular toll plaza.”
After they verify your address, you can avail a concession on the toll paid using your FASTag account.