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Thursday / 20 June 2024
HomeFeaturesYou can now open a debt-free e-tag in South Africa – Here’s everything you can use it for

You can now open a debt-free e-tag in South Africa – Here’s everything you can use it for

You can now open a new e-tag account in South Africa without having any unpaid e-toll bills linked to the account.

During a media briefing on 10 April 2024, Reginald Demana, CEO of the National Roads Agency (Sanral), said that any e-tag accounts registered within 30 days of the shutdown of e-tolls in Gauteng would incur current e-toll debt, but not historic debt.

He said current debt refers to any unpaid e-tolls that were added to your record within the past 30 days, whereas historic debt relates to the charges accrued before this period.

It is now just over 30 calendar days since e-tolls were switched off for good on 23h59m59s, 11 April 2024, meaning that you can now freely get a new e-tag without being immediately responsible for outstanding e-toll payments.

In his words, Demana said: “If you were to open a new account, get a tag, somewhere around… 13 May or so, you are starting on a clean slate, your tag is not encumbered, [it] doesn’t have anything [on it], your account is not encumbered, and of course, the policymakers will still decide on what to do with debt that is older than the current debt.”

During the same briefing, transport minister Sindisiwe Chikunga said that motorists will be obliged to settle their outstanding e-toll accounts, i.e. their historical debt.

“In terms of the law, the motorists are still obligated to pay [their historic e-toll debts],” said Chikunga.

“On how we will enforce or not enforce, that is a matter we have not discussed, we will be tending to that as time goes on.”

Everything you can use an e-tag for

Going forward, e-tags will still be valid as a more convenient payment method at all conventional toll plazas in South Africa.

Not only do they allow drivers to skip the process of coming to a complete stop and paying with a card or cash, but select toll plazas around the country also have a dedicated e-tag lane that lets vehicles with e-tags completely sidestep any lines that may have formed at the gates.

In addition, the device can be used to pay for parking at participating malls, with a list of eligible malls being available on the Sanral App.

While somewhat limited in their application for now, Sanral head of engineering Louw Kannemeyer said that the agency is working on expanding the range of functions for e-tags in the future.

New e-tag accounts can be registered online through the Sanral website, mobile app, self-service terminals located at various toll plazas around the country, and customer service centres in shopping malls.

Information required for the registration comprise:

  • Contact details
  • Valid identity document
  • Physical and postal address
  • Make, model, and colour of vehicle
  • Vehicle licence plate number
  • Account payment details

The tag is available for R50 and can be delivered to your doorstep at a cost of R60.

According to tolling operator Trans African Concessions (TRAC), the R50 purchase price will be credited to your e-tag account after purchase which essentially makes the device free.

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