FasTrak on The Golden Gate Bridge
FasTrak (which I admit to sometimes spelling FastTrak or FasTrack or FastTrack or That-Little-White-Box-on-the-Dash-That-Beeps-in-the-Toll-Plaza because I can never exactly remember the correct way to spell it) is an automatic toll charging system that gives a discount when crossing the Golden Gate Bridge and allows you to skip the toll-takers on the seven other California state-owned bridges.
It currently saves drivers $1.00 over being billed for a phpotographed license plate every time you cross, and that’s enough money to add up to a lot of savings.
As of March 27, 2013 the Golden Gate Bridge made a change to electronic payments only. So you can either pay with FasTrak, or with the Pay-By-Plate Option where you pay with cash or your credit card on a later date. FasTrak works on all lanes so just drive right on through!
Other Bay Area bridges may have lanes in which you must pay cash and in which your FasTrak transponder will not be recognized. It’s also recognized at places like some of the parking lots at SFO… which surprised the heck out of me the first time it happened and the gate bar just jumped up when we approached!
You can open a FasTrak account on the FasTrak website, or call 1-877-229-8655 (415-486-8655 outside California).
For more information about FasTrak, visit their website.
The Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza is designed with toll enforcement video cameras that capture the license plate of every car. So if you don’t have a FasTrak they take a picture of your license plate and send you a bill. More information can be found here.
Once in a great while a FasTrak unit won’t trigger the sensing equipment and you can be charged a penalty by mistake. If this happens you can call 1-877-229-8655, tell them about the problem and they’ll tell you what to do to get the extra charge turned into a normal toll charge.