Motorists that are planning to head to NLEX can soon pay with cash once more. Recently, NLEX Corporation announced that all toll plazas along the expressway will have cash lanes again.
This comes after officials from the NLEX Corporation, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), and Toll Regulatory Board discussed ways to ease the holiday toll plaza traffic. One of the ways the company thought of hastening toll transactions was the reopening of cash lanes during the holidays.
“We will be opening cash lanes in all toll plazas during this transition towards 100% cashless transactions. For the smaller plazas, where there are limited lanes, we will have an exclusive RFID lane beside a combined cash/RFID lane,” said J. Luigi Bautista, president, and general manager of NLEX Corporation.
Aside from reopening cash lanes, the company also announced that it will have its barriers raised at RFID booths to ensure faster traffic flow during expected surges. That means that motorists with RFID tags need not stop at the toll plazas. Last week, Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian claimed that if NLEX was confident that their RFID scanners were working, why not remove the barriers altogether for traffic to flow freely.
In addition to having an 'open barrier' policy at RFID lanes, Bautista added that they transferred the RFID sticker installation and reloading sites away from the toll plazas. That will help further minimize traffic buildup at the toll plazas, especially during the peak of the holiday season.
“Sticker installation and reloading of RFIDs will also be relocated to other locations in order not to compete with the limited road space. They will be moved to other strategic areas in and out of the expressway,” added Bautista.
With the holidays just around the corner, NLEX's decision to bring back cash lanes should help mitigate its RFID woes during the transition period. As to whether the cash lanes will become a permanent staple again in all NLEX toll plazas, remains to be seen.