Norway is littered with toll roads, and quite honestly the entire system is a little baffling. There’s quite a bit of information already out there on the internet, but hopefully this post provides a more comprehensive guide. However, your results may differ!
What do toll roads look like?
When you drive through Norway, especially on some of the major European roads (denoted with an E before a letter, for example E6), you’ll likely see the following.
These are automatic toll roads that charge drivers for passing through them. Prices are noted on the sign and depend on the type of vehicle passing through. I’ve seen prices range from 9kr to 90kr for normal vehicles. They also look a bit like speed cameras, but as far as I’m aware, they’re not!
How do they work?
The toll roads are automatic, so there’s no need to stop and physically pay. When you pass through the gantry, several cameras will take pictures of your license plate. This is then fed back to the operator who will then send you an invoice in the post. Foreign cars must pay too, and an invoice will be sent via the European Parking Collection. If you plan on driving a taking a road trip to Norway with a foreign car, you can register here, which will give you faster invoices!
Simple enough? Well not really. These toll points are not owned by one single company. Instead you have loads of different companies all responsible for financing that stretch of road. The E6 alone has seven different toll road operators. This means that, for whatever reason, if you were to drive from the south to the north of Norway via the E6, you would receive seven different invoices.
This seems a bit silly, and thankfully the Norwegian government agrees. There’s a system in place called Autopass, which allows you to consolidate all of your toll road charges into one single invoice through the use of a tag, featured below.
You can also go into agreements with the toll roads separately, which could provide greater discounts. But for simplicity, we’ll focus on the Autopass Tag.
Autopass Tags – How it works and how to get one.
As mentioned in the previous section, the main advantage of getting an Autopass tag is the ability to drive through the majority of toll roads in Norway and receive one invoice. You can also get a 10% discount on prices, online billing and you can use it to pay Scandinavian toll charges. In summary, Autopass works as the middleman between you as a driver and the toll operators, so it’s pretty worth it.
You can get one by first entering into an Autopass agreement with any toll operator that uses Autopass. I’m personally with Fjellinjen as my operator, but you should pick the toll operator you pass through frequently, as they may be able to provide further discounts. Click here to find out the operators (the ones with * do not issue tags).
Most of the websites have an English language option, so it should be pretty simple to navigate. You’ll be redirected to the standard Autopass website where you fill out all the details such as registration number, address and so forth. After you’ve entered an agreement, you can start enjoying the benefits (even before your tag arrives). The tag typically arrives within two weeks, and you can install it behind the rear-view mirror.
You’ll still get an invoice via the post, but this one invoice will detail all toll charges irregardless of operator. You can also pay online by logging into the operator of your choosing, where you’ll be able to view your journeys online. Some operators even have AvtaleGiro or eFaktura, so they’ll send the invoices direct to your bank which will be paid automatically. Your bank or the operator will inform you of how to set this up.
What do the lights mean on Norwegian toll roads?
Next to the toll roads, you’ll also have lights which provide a status of your payment with Autopass.
The green light means everything is okay! The tag has been registered and you’ve been charged normally via your contract. It also means that your account is in good health with the operator.
The white light means somethings up with your payment. This could be one of a couple of reasons. (Note: Your agreement still stands and you’ve been charged normally).
If you’ve opted for AvtaleGiro or eFaktura, your bill has been sent to the bank and will be processed soon. You can either check with your operator or via your bank to check that everything is okay.
If you’ve not gone through automatic payment, your bill has been sent to you and is currently outstanding. You can either wait for your physical invoice to arrive and pay then, or login to your operator and pay via their website.
No light / Yellow Light could mean a number of things.
If you don’t have Autopass, there will not be a light signal. Cameras have taken evidence of your car and you will be billed at the standard rate via rate
If you do have an Autopass tag, it could mean that the tag is not properly attached, defective, blocked by UV windows or simply the battery has died. If you think your tag is broken, you can contact the operator and they’ll send you a replacement. It could also mean that you’ve got several outstanding bills, and your account has been frozen. It’s probably best to contact your operator regardless, and they’ll be able to help you troubleshoot.
Hopefully by this point, you’ll be a bit more confident on the whole toll system. Norway funds a lot of its new road projects by the toll system, so its a necessary evil. The system may seem a little daunting at first, but if you follow my recommendation of setting up an Autopass system, you’ll hardly remember its there. It should also be noted that motorcycles, electric vehicles, mobility impaired and public vehicles are exempt from the charges.
If you’ve got any questions or comments about this, you can comment below and i’ll do my best to answer, or you can message me via the “contact me” page.