Ask Trooper Steve: Will I be charged the $25+ toll violation fee without a transponder in my car?

Trooper Steve answers viewer questions

ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions about the rules of the road every week, helping Orlando-area residents become better drivers by being better educated.

Trooper Steve was asked, “I left my toll transponder at home. Will I still get charged the extra $25 toll violation fee when I use the Express lane or does that only apply to those who do not have a transponder at all?”

[TRENDING: Here’s what’s causing Florida’s homeowners insurance crisis | Body of missing Florida mother found in shallow grave, deputies say | Become a News 6 Insider (it’s free!)]

The key to avoiding the toll violation fee is having a transponder assigned to you, he said.

“That is the goal of the authority of the express lanes. If you are someone who has a transponder assigned to you, you know there are a few things that always need to be up-to-date. Of course, you always want to make sure that transponder is in your vehicle. You also want to make sure that your method of payment is up-to-date so that there are no issues down the road,” he said.

Trooper Steve said another thing to remember is keeping your vehicle’s information up-to-date and synced with the transponder.

“The Express lanes along I-4 are not a toll-by-plate method of payment. Meaning if you do not have a transponder or one assigned to your license plate, then you are not authorized to use the Express lanes,” he said. “If you were to use the Express lanes and not use your transponder or not have one assigned to your tag, you could inquire that toll violation charge of $25 plus whatever the total amount that you use.”

If you forget your transponder, but your license plate is assigned to one, then you would pay for the tolls used as long as the technology is able to find the link between your license plate and the account registered with the transponder.

About the Authors:

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.