FASTags to become mandatory from February 15: All you need to know
- The government had initially set the deadline for the mandatory fitment of FASTag for all vehicles in the country from January 1, 2021 but the implementation was delayed and toll plazas continued collecting money manually too.
Electronic toll collection system FASTag will become mandatory for all vehicles from February 15, 2021. The ministry of road transport and highways had earlier given an order in this regard. The FASTag will be necessary while travelling across the country and will also be required while crossing any toll plazas throughout the country’s national highways.
The government had initially set the deadline for the mandatory fitment of FASTag for all vehicles in the country from January 1, 2021 but the implementation was delayed and toll plazas continued collecting money manually too.
Several banks like HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Kotak Bank, Paytm Payments Bank and IDFC First Bank are issuing FASTags.
- What is a FASTag?
The FASTag sticker is attached to the windshield of a car and uses the Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. The sticker is pasted on the inside of the windshield of the car and resembles a bar code. RFID developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) enables the driver of the car to pass through the FASTag readers installed overhead at toll plazas. As the vehicle passes beneath the detector, the RFID code gets detected and the necessary toll amount is deducted from the minimum pre-paid balance.
The National Highways Authority of India said on February 10 that it is not required to maintain a minimum amount in FASTag wallet.
- How does FASTag help in commute?
FASTags help in seamless collection of toll tax without the need of stopping at toll plazas. The use of RFID technology helps in collecting taxes without the need of handling cash by toll booth employees and negates waiting time in toll booths. It also stops unnecessary queuing at the toll booths.
- Where to buy FASTags from?
FASTags can be purchased across the country’s toll booths. One can buy FASTags from Amazon.in and also purchase FASTags from Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, State Bank of India, Kotak Bank and PayTM Payments Bank. Most of them offer discounts or exclusive offers through their respective mobile apps and also offer cashback on purchase of FASTags. Carrying your identification as well as the vehicle registration documents is mandatory for purchase of FASTags.
The cost of buying FASTags depends upon two factors - class of vehicle (car, jeep, van, bus, truck, light commercial vehicles, construction machines) and bank from where the FASTag is being purchased from. Different banks may have different pricing policies regarding issuance fees and security deposits. Currently, purchasing FASTag on PayTM will cost ₹500 - out of which ₹250 is the refundable security deposit.
- How to recharge your FASTags?
FASTags issued by banks can be recharged on Paytm and PhonePe. UPI, Credit Cards and Debit Cards can be used for recharging FASTags.
- What is the validity of FASTags?
A FASTag is valid for 5 years from the date of issuance. Recharging of FASTag does not extend its validity beyond the initial date of issuance.