Abu Dhabi to roll out road tolls from January 2, 2021

Motorists can register online, activate their payment accounts

ABU DHABI : Abu Dhabi is set to roll out road tolls from January 2, 2021 onwards.

The emirate’s public transport provider, the Department of Municipalities and Transport’s integrated transport centre (ITC), has urged residents to activate their online accounts through the dedicated website darb.itc.gov.ae, or through the Darb mobile app.

At first, the Darb Toll Gate system will be activated in four locations: Sheikh Zayed Bridge, the Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Bridge, Al Maqtaa Bridge and Musaffah Bridge. It will aim to smoothen traffic flow, encourage the use of public transport and enhance the efficiency of the capital’s road network.

Collection times

The Dh4 toll will be collected only during peak hours from Saturday to Thursday, from 7am to 9am, and again from 5pm to 7pm. There will be no toll on Fridays and on public holidays.

Abu Dhabi toll lead
Picture used for illustrative purposes onlyImage Credit: Gulf News

Toll caps

In order to minimise the impact on road users, the maximum daily toll for each vehicle will be capped at Dh16. In addition, a monthly cap of Dh200 will apply for the first vehicle on a user’s account, along with a cap of Dh150 on the second vehicle, and Dh100 on all additional vehicles. As for corporate-owned vehicles, there will, however, be no daily or monthly toll cap.

Online payment system

Once users top up their online accounts, the toll will be deducted directly after the user passes a toll gate, with the toll gate system capturing vehicle plate numbers. The Darb Toll Gate system has an initial vehicle registration fee of Dh100 per vehicle, of which, Dh50 will be credited back to the registered account.

Exemptions

Certain categories of vehicles will be exempt from road tolls. These include single vehicles owned by senior Emiratis aged 60 years and older, retired Emiratis, people with special needs and Emiratis with limited income. These motorists can visit the Darb website and register for exemptions by submitting the required documents. And for those with special needs, the vehicle can be registered in the name of a first or second-degree relative, but the cards issued to people of determination by the Ministry of Community Development or the Zayed Higher Organisation need to be supplied.

Other categories of vehicles will also be exempt from the tolls, including ambulances, armed forces and civil defence vehicles bearing their number plates and emblems, public buses, public taxi vehicles licensed in Abu Dhabi, school buses authorised by ITC, passenger buses with a capacity of 26 passengers and above, vehicles bearing the plate number of Abu Dhabi Police, Ministry of Interior or local police of other emirates, towed vehicles and motorcycles.

However, registration in Darb is mandatory for all users, including those eligible for exemptions. The ITC has also stressed that every vehicle passing a toll gate must be registered on the Darb toll gate system. In case a vehicle is not registered when passing a toll gate, the user will be given a grace period of ten business days to register the vehicle. Otherwise, a fine will be applied.

Insufficient balance

Users should also ensure sufficient balance in their accounts when crossing the toll gates. For vehicles registered in Abu Dhabi, motorists can pay off any unpaid toll when completing annual vehicle licensing procedures. For vehicles registered outside Abu Dhabi, motorists will be given a grace period of five business days to recharge the account before a fine is applied.

By : Samihah Zaman – GULF NEWS

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