Frequently Asked Questions 

How to Pay Tolls with All Electronic Tolling
FasTrak and All Electronic Tolling
Toll Invoices
Carpools and DMV-Issued Decals
Rental Vehicles
Toll Rates at Golden Gate Bridge
General Information about All Electronic Tolling

How to Pay Tolls with All Electronic Tolling

How do I pay the Golden Gate Bridge toll now that there are no toll collectors?

With all electronic tolling at the Golden Gate Bridge, you can conveniently pay your toll(s) using FasTrak and Pay-By-Plate options which include License Plate Account, One-Time Payment, or Toll Invoice. To choose which toll payment is option best suited for your needs, you should consider how frequently you use the Golden Gate Bridge as well as the other Bay Area toll facilities where FasTrak is also accepted. Also, consider taking advantage of the added benefit at the Golden Gate Bridge—discounted toll rates are available with FasTrak. For example, if you drive a 2-axle car, the FasTrak discounted toll rate is $6, while the Pay-By-Plate toll rate is $7.        Less ▲

What happens if I drive through the toll plaza and don’t do anything? 

If you take no action to pay the toll with a FasTrak Account or one of the three Pay-By-Plate options, a Toll Invoice is generated (no sooner than 48 hours after your crossing) and mailed to the vehicle owner on file with the DMV. It is critically important that vehicle owner information be kept current at the DMV, as unpaid Toll Invoices escalate to Toll Violations with added penalties. To avoid the possibility and inconvenience of a Toll Invoice, take action now by going online and opening a FasTrak Account or License Plate Account, or by making a One-Time Payment.

How can I pay my toll using Cash?

Even though cash is no longer accepted at the Toll Plaza, customers can still pay their toll with cash in one of several ways:

A One-Time Payment can be made at one of many Cash Payment Locations. You just need to have your license plate number with you when you go to make a payment.

A FasTrak toll tag can be purchased at select Bay Area retail locations such as Safeway, Costco or Walgreens (click for retail locations). AFTER you register the tag online (www.bayareafastrak.org) or by phone at (877) BAY-TOLL (877-229-8655) or 415-486-8655 outside California (click here for hours of operation), you can replenish or fund your account using cash at one of many Cash Payment Locations or at the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center in San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.

A License Plate Account can be opened online or by phone (877) BAY-TOLL (877-229-8655) or 415-486-8655 outside California (click here for hours of operation). Then, funds can be added to the Account using cash at a Cash Payment Location. A cash-based License Plate Account requires a prepaid balance (the value of one toll), BEFORE crossing the Bridge.

A Toll Invoice can be paid using cash at a Cash Payment Location or at the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center in San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.

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Toll Payment Options at the Golden Gate Bridge

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Learn More about Using FasTrak

Were any changes made to the FasTrak program when the Golden Gate Bridge converted to all electronic tolling?

FasTrak services remain the same with two exceptions: (1) At the Toll Plaza, there are no dedicated FasTrak-only toll lanes as all toll lanes are open to process tolls electronically for FasTrak and the new Pay-By-Plate options; (2) If you use cash to replenish your FasTrak Account, you now have more options for doing so at aCash Payment Location. Customers can still go to the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center at 475 The Embarcadero (at Broadway), San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.        Less ▲

How can I learn more about FasTrak and how it works?

  1. Onlinewww.bayareafastrak.org
  2. By Phone: (877) BAY-TOLL (877-229-8655); outside California 415-486-TOLL (415-486-8655). Click here for hours of operation.
  3. In Person: Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center, 475 The Embarcadero (at Broadway), San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.

I don’t have a FasTrak Account now and I don’t plan on opening one, how will I pay the Golden Gate Bridge toll?

You can use one of the three new Pay-by-Plate Toll Payment options: Open a License Plate Account, make a One-Time Payment, or pay a Toll Invoice. 

I cross the Golden Gate Bridge less than 10 times a year, can I use FasTrak?   

Yes, anyone can use FasTrak. Opening a FasTrak Account requires an initial prepaid toll balance and the use of a toll tag. With FasTrak, you pay the discounted toll rates offered at the Golden Gate Bridge.  If you cross other Bay Area toll bridges in addition to your trips across the Golden Gate Bridge, FasTrak may likely be the most convenient choice for you. Alternatively, if you prefer not to maintain the required prepaid FasTrak Account balance and don’t mind paying the non-discounted toll rates at the Golden Gate Bridge, you can use the Pay-By-Plate options: License Plate Account, One-Time Payment, or Toll Invoice.

What is the prepaid toll balance required to open a FasTrak account?

Using a valid credit card, the initial prepaid minimum toll balance to open a FasTrak Account is $25. Using cash, check, or money order, the initial prepaid minimum toll balance to open a FasTrak Account is $50. After establishing a FasTrak Account, the replenishment amount may increase based on the frequency of your crossings.

I want to use cash to open and replenish a FasTrak Account, how can I do that?

There are a number of newly established Cash Payment Locations around the Bay Area that will accept cash to maintain your FasTrak Account but you must open a cash-based FasTrak Account in person at the Bay Area Customer Service Center, 475 The Embarcadero (at Broadway), San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.

What does the FasTrak toll tag cost?

The FasTrak toll tag is provided at no charge and requires a $20 refundable toll tag deposit when opening your FasTrak account.

How do I know if my FasTrak toll tag is working correctly when I go through the Toll Plaza? 

As you go through the Toll Plaza, when FasTrak toll tag signal is detected correctly, you hear a beep. If the toll tag signal is not detected, digital cameras capture images of your license plates. So as long as your correct license plate number is on file with your FasTrak Account, your account will automatically be charged the correct toll. If the license plate can’t be associated with FasTrak Account, License Plate Account, or a One-Time Payment, a Toll Invoice is mailed sent to the registered owner of the vehicle.

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Learn More about Toll Invoices

Why did I get a Toll Invoice?

If you do not take action to open a FasTrak Account, open a Open a License Plate Account or make a One-Time Payment, a Toll Invoice is generated and mailed to the registered owner of the vehicle, based on the license plate of the vehicle that you crossed in. The Toll Invoice is only for the toll amount due.        Less ▲

How do I avoid getting a Toll Invoice?

To avoid getting a Toll Invoice, take action now! Open a FasTrak Account online now using a credit card; open a License Plate Account now using a credit card; or make a One-Time Payment online now using a credit card. You can also pay with cash if you prefer. 

How often are Toll Invoices generated and mailed?

Toll Invoices are only generated and mailed to customers who have not taken action to open a FasTrak Account, open a License Plate Account, or make a One-Time Payment. If no action is taken, the first Toll Invoice is mailed four or more days AFTER crossing the Golden Gate Bridge. Thereafter, invoices are mailed on a 30-day cycle if the customer crossed the Bridge again in the same vehicle. 

Can an Out-of-State Driver Crossing the Golden Gate Pay a Toll Invoice?

Yes, but Toll Invoices will be mailed to the registered owner of the vehicle and must be paid within 21 days after being generated. If visitors won’t be home within 21 days of their crossing the Golden Gate Bridge southbound into San Francisco, then it is recommended that they make a One-Time Payment within 30 days BEFORE or within 48 hours AFTER crossing.

What if I don’t Pay a Toll Invoice?

Any unpaid Toll Invoice or unpaid portion of a Toll Invoice leads directly to a Toll Violation notice which attaches a $25 penalty for each toll transaction associated with the unpaid Toll Invoice. If the first Toll Violation notice goes unpaid, a second Toll Violation notice is issued (with increase penalties) is goes unpaid, the amount due is referred the DMV who withhold your vehicle registration until the penalties are paid. For out-of-state vehicles, the matter is referred to a collections agency.

I have a FasTrak Account or a License Plate Account in good standing, why did I get a Toll Invoice mailed to me?

It is most likely that the license plate number shown on the invoice was not yet added to your FasTrak Account or License Plate Account. To be sure that the correct license plate information is associated with your account, please update your account information: (1) Onlinewww.bayareafastrak.org or (2) By Phone: toll free (877) BAY-TOLL (877-229-8655); outside California 415-486-TOLL (415-486-8655). Click here for hours of operation.

I was sent a Toll Invoice with a license plate number listed that is not my vehicle, what do I do to correct this?

This can happen from time to time. Take a few minutes and complete the toll dispute information on the reverse side of the Toll Invoice and return it to the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center in the provided envelope by the due date provided.

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Toll Rates at the Golden Gate Bridge

NOTE: Effective April 7, 2014, tolls will increase. Click HERE for more information.

Carpools and Vehicles with DMV Decals

How does the carpool program work at the Golden Gate Bridge with the conversion to all electronic tolling? What about vehicles with DMV-issued decals?

During designated carpool hours, toll lane #2 (on the right side of the Toll Plaza) is the designated carpool toll lane. This designated carpool toll lane is only for eligible carpool vehicles and vehicles with the white DMV-issued Clean Air Vehicle Decal.       Less ▲

Eligible carpool vehicles and vehicles with the white DMV decal must have a FasTrak account in good standing to receive the discounted carpool toll during the established carpool hours of 5 am to 9 am and 4 pm to 6 pm, weekdays except these observed holidays – New Year's Day, Presidents' Day (third Monday in February), Memorial Day (last Monday in May), Independence Day (July 4), Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day (fourth Thursday in November), and Christmas Day.

Eligible carpool vehicles include two-axle vehicles with three or more persons, motorcycles, and buses. Two-seat vehicles and vehicles with rear axle dual tires do not qualify as a carpool. Vehicles bearing the green DMV-issued Clean Air Vehicle Decal do not qualify for the discounted toll rate.

Rental Vehicles

Does my rental car company have a tolling program?

Most of the major rental car companies offer a convenience fee-based tolling program, which is likely the most convenient toll payment option to use. Please check with your rental agent at the time of your reservation on their tolling program.        Less ▲

Can I add my rental car to my existing FasTrak account?

This is not recommended practice. You can add a rental car to your existing FasTrak Account by adding the license plate number of the rental vehicle to the account and using your own toll tag. We do not recommend this action for a couple of reasons. If you forget to remove the rental vehicle license plate number from your existing FasTrak account, you would be charged additional tolls if the next person using the rental vehicle crosses area toll facilities. Further, you run the risk of leaving your FasTrak toll tag in the rented vehicle.

In order to avoid being charged tolls that you did not accrue, be sure to take the toll tag out of the rental vehicle at the end of your rental period AND remove the rented vehicle license plate from your FasTrak Account.

What if I opt-out of the tolling program offered to me and I take no action to pay my toll?

Please inquire with the rental agent at the time of your reservation on their tolling policies and any fees that they may associate with their polices. If you opt-out of a tolling program offered by the rental company AND you take no action to pay the toll using a One-Time Payment or a License Plate Account, the registered owner of the vehicle (the rental company) will be mailed a Toll Invoice. And in turn, you will be charged the toll amount due on the Toll Invoice plus additional fees, depending on the policy of the car rental company.

What if my rental car company doesn’t have a tolling program?

If the rental company does not offer a tolling program for the Golden Gate Bridge, be sure to ask how that company assesses tolls on rental vehicles as the tolls are tied to the rental vehicle’s license plate. If the company offers no additional toll payment information for the Golden Gate Bridge, then you must take action BEFORE your first southbound crossing of the Golden Gate Bridge by making a One-Time Payment by telephone, online or at a nearby Cash Payment Location or by opening a limited duration License Plate Account.

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General Information about All Electronic Tolling

With the conversion of the Golden Gate Bridge to all electronic tolling, happened to the Toll Collectors?

The decision to convert to all electronic tolling was made in January 2011. Of the 28 full-time Toll Collectors who wished to remain employed with the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, more than half transitioned to other District positions.        Less ▲

Why did the Golden Gate Bridge switch to all electronic tolling?

The Golden Gate Bridge converted to all electronic tolling for several key reasons.

This proven technology in use across the USA (Miami, Denver, Texas, Seattle) and around the world. Electronic tolling offers customer time savings as there is no more fumbling for cash or stopping at the Toll Plaza. Paying tolls on the Golden Gate Bridge offers choices (FasTrak and Pay-By-Plate) and increased customer flexibility allow payment using credit or cash/check/money order. Traffic studies project a decrease in traffic congestion at the Toll Plaza specifically on weekday evenings, along with weekends and holidays, as the need to stop is eliminated. The cost to convert to all electronic tolling is $3.2 million (funded by tolls) and the switch is projected to save $16 million over an eight-year period following the conversion.

What is all electronic tolling and how does it work?

All electronic tolling, sometimes referred to as cashless tolling, assess tolls electronically at the Toll Plaza, using either a toll tag for FasTrak users or the vehicle’s license plate for the Pay-By-Plate users. Motorists no longer stop at the Toll Plaza. Equipment in the Toll Plaza includes antennas that detect a signal from FasTrak toll tags and digital cameras that capture license plate images. Transactions are processed and tolls are assessed at the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center in San Francisco. License plate images are used to link and post the toll transaction to a FasTrak Account (if the toll tag signal is not captured), or one of three Pay-By-Plate payment options: License Plate Account, One-Time Payment, or Toll Invoice.

Did the conversion to all electronic tolling improve traffic for motorists?

When electronic tolling with FasTrak was added at the Golden Gate Bridge in July 2000, the traffic congestion during the weekday morning commute was immediately improved, with typical wait times at the Toll Plaza dropping from up to 20 minutes to under a minute. Today, over 70% of all southbound (tolling direction) motorists use FasTrak, with the morning commute market share at 86%, the afternoon market share reaching 79%, and Saturday evening market share peaking at 59%.

Today, traffic congestion does occur during the evening weekday commute periods and on weekend evenings. Much of this congestion is due to the higher percentage of customers stopping to pay cash during these time periods. When all electronic tolling is implemented, cash will no longer be accepted and motorist will not stop at the Toll Plaza which should improve the flow of traffic during these times.

Can I still pay my toll using Cash?

Yes. When the conversion to all electronic tolling was made on Wednesday, March 27, 2013, the manual collection of Cash (by toll collectors) ceased. Tolls are now assessed electronically byFasTrakandPay-By-Plateoptions. Cash toll payment remains an option, but not at the Toll Plaza. Instead, cash payments can be made at aCash Payment Locationand at the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center, 475 The Embarcadero (at Broadway), San Francisco. Click here for hours of operation.

What happened to the dedicated “FasTrak-Only” toll lanes (west side - Toll Plaza)?

Dedicated FasTrak-Only toll lanes are no longer needed as all toll lanes are equipped to process the FasTrak and Pay-By-Plate options. There is no need to drive through a specific toll lane or even stop at the Toll Plaza. 

Where can I read the privacy policy for all electronic tolling?

License plate information that is collected as a part of all electronic tolling is used only for the purposes of toll collection. Neither the toll collection system at the Golden Gate Bridge nor the Bay Area FasTrak Customer Service Center systems are publicly accessible. Data collected for the purposes of assessing tolls in California is eliminated from the data systems in accordance with Senate Bill 1268. Click here to read the Golden Gate Bridge Electronic Tolling Privacy Policy.