1 Dec, 2011 @ 13:00
1 min read

Toll too far between Spain and Portugal

TOURISTS looking to tour through Andalucia and into the Algarve for their winter break will have to bring some extra cash or take a big detour.

From December 8, a massive new toll of 77 euros is to be levied for travellers taking the A-22 motorway across the border.

The measure, brought in by the Portuguese government in a bid to clamber together funds from toll fees, will mean car drivers paying 77 euros and truck drivers 127 euros for a 90 day pass.

Discounts are being offered to residents and business owners on the Algarve, with 10 free trips per month followed by a 15 per cent discount.

But the new toll threatens to drive a wedge between the neighbouring countries.

Many in Portugal have labelled the charge ‘unjust’ and claim it will badly affect tourism.

Meanwhile locals in Huelva argue the measure will create a barrier to economic development in Andalucia.

Eloise Horsfield

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  1. Where did you get the informatuion about this toll. have tried to get confirmation but nothing I have found indicates that the toll wil be anything like as high as you suggest.

    In fact there does not appear to be a toll for using the bridge at all just for the motorway and 0.8 cents a kilometer seems to be the rate to be charged. I have also read that these tolls have been scrapped by the new government anyway.

    Is this just scaremongering?

  2. My biggest beef with toll roads is that often you do not know what it will cost until you use it !. The new toll road between Antequera and the new Malaga ring road is 3.05€ now so like others it may double in the summer, it is 6km shorter and 5 mins quicker. I often travel from the Antequera area to Gibraltar (we have family there) we never know what the cost of the toll roads will be until we get to the booth, it should be summer and winter prices but we have paid the summer price often in the winter, maybe for holidays we do not know !!.
    I have petitioned (petition number 0732/2011) the EU to ask them to make a ruling for the current charges to be displayed before you use the toll. I have received a reply that a new system of payment will be available from 2014, but nothing about the charges being displayed before use.

  3. Unfortunately the tolls are starting on December 8th and it’s not good news for tourism or our Spanish neighbours. For accurate information on charges for visitors needing to rent a transponder (tolls are debited from the driver’s bank account) Viaverde.pt has information in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Briefly there is a deposit of 27.50€ (refundable on return of working device and all charges paid), with rental of 6€ for the 1st week and 1.50€ each week thereafter. It can be rented for up to 90 days. I haven’t found the charge per km yet but it’s been estimated that it will cost around 7 or 8€ to travel the length of the A22 from Vila Real to Lagos for a class 1 vehicle.

  4. Sadly, I’ve added up all your figures of cost… we will NOT drive on Toll Road from Spain to Portugal.. we’ll fly on Ryanair to Malta.
    Some idiots DO price themselves OUT of the Market… wot?!

  5. Well we have been holding of from buying our house in Portugal as we were told last year this was going to happen if this is the case we will be buying in Spain and stay out of Portugal thank you very much.

  6. Very irresponsible reporting! The toll will not start on the A22 Motorway until Tavira so access is available over the Guadiana River bridge to Vila Real and Monte Gordo and then the N125 road gives access throughout the Algarve. Short term pre-pay schemes are available to non-Portuguese registered cars and other vehicles. Frequent users of the motorway with non-Portuguese registered cars can lease an electronic tag to which credit is assigned and then they are charged against this credit for the use made.

  7. What is the fuss about? In the north of Portugal the electronic tolls have been working for over a year. Yes it is hard to make a payment, but it can be done at any Portuguese Post Office.
    The protest from the Galician Government has not produced results so I doubt if the ones from Andalusia will be effective either.

  8. I think this toll is rediculous i’ve been traveling from Spain to Portugal for many years as I used to live there and have many friends in the Algarve,I also spend a lot of money when I visit them.From now on Portugal is off my xmas list until the stupid goverment sorts it act out!John

  9. We could do with a follow-up from Olive Press on this toll nonsense. I’ve read all these posts and still can’t make sense of it.Last year, holidaying in Jerez, we took a trip out to Portugal over that bridge, spent a few quid on a meal and in the market in Castro Marim and enjoyed the novelty of it all. (We are easily pleased) But for sure, we won’t be doing that again if this tonteria is enacted.

  10. There should be nothing stopping Stefanjo from visiting again. You can access the coastal holiday resorts as far as Monte Gordo and beyond WITHOUT paying any tolls. The first electronic toll sensor is just east of the exit to Tavira, the 3rd motorway exit after crossing into Portugal.

  11. Thank you Andrew,we enjoyed our little trip over La Guadiana and may try again this year,though must remember to ask for “um Bica” rather than un cafe solo! Cheers..

  12. Andrew Shanks, THanks for that update mate.
    We stay literally just across the Guadiana and being a wildlife photographer I cross the bridge back into Portugal most days.

    Is it easy enough to get the electronic tag and use/pay for it?

  13. Hi Steve. It depends on the registration of your car. Portuguese reg. cars can get a tag/transponder from the CTT post office or Via Verde shop or Via Verde agent. For non-Portuguese reg cars, the tag is available from Service areas on the Via Infante – your nearest if your car is not Portuguese reg sounds like the Olhau services. When you rent the tag for 90 days for 27.50 euros you also pay 10 euros of pre-payment. To top up pre-payment you can do so at any post office or Payshop franchise – take the receipt that you were given when you leased the tag as this has the payment code ref. that both post office and Payshop require.
    Best of luck,

  14. This story is not true purchase tickets at Post Offices and service stations, or if you land in Portugal and hire a Portuguese car at the airports.
    Purchase only for the journey you want to drive. The system has been working in the North of Portugal since Oct 2010. So I have used it several times and understand the system.
    I feel this is story picked up just before the introduction of the tolls on the A22 and was not checked out at the time of publication

  15. This report is a complete lie. You absolutely do not have to pay such an amount of money to cross the border. Nonsense… After crossing the border, you have the option: to leave in the first exit and don’t pay a cent; or to pay at the kiosk just after the border. There are automatic machines to make the payment, just pull right. Or you can pay in advance. In the website “www.viaverde.pt” is all the information you may need in portuguese, english, french and spanish.

    I also think it’s very irresponsible to publish such media rubish and such tremendous lies.

  16. Here is an attempt at clarification for those who may have been planning a (worthwhile) visit:
    Two new payment methods for foreign-registered vehicles were inaugurated recently by the Secretary of State for Public Works, stressing that the chaos during the Easter holidays would now be a thing of the past. With these, the impact on tourism will become minimal and visitors can holiday in comfort. The additional payment choices are ‘Easy Toll’ and ‘Toll Card’.

    Easy Toll is available at border crossings at Vila Formoso (A25), Vila Real de Santo António (A22), Chaves (A24) and Vila Nova de Cerveira (EN13). Machines have been installed for users to pay tolls and staff are available to provide information. Easy Toll enables drivers of foreign-registered vehicles to associate their number plate to a bank card for up to a month, with toll charges being debited directly from their account.

    A Toll Card is prepaid with 5, 10, 20 or 40 euros, activated and linked to a vehicle licence number by sending a SMS text message. Cards can be bought on-line and at Portuguese post offices+motorway services stations.

    These new systems have been added to existing ones, such as ‘Toll Service’ comprising pre-paid trips for visitors (available in Portuguese hotels) and the returnable Visitors device, which is similar to the electronic Via Verde system, for a predetermined period, available at various locations in Portugal.

    Tolls on the SCUT (EU-built) motorways have had the negative effect of increasing traffic on other free roads, particularly the Algarve EN125. Rather than the quoted 77euros, the cost from VRSA to Lagos is €11,60 or €23,20 return. Compare this with the several stops for toll-paying from Estepona to Malaga, Granada, etc.

  17. The whole thing is ridiculous! Sooner or later the toll’s will be lifted. Why on Earth in an economic dip do these idiots increase taxes. If there had been toll booths they may have got away with it! Although I doubt it! Making a ridiculously difficult method of payment that’s NOT completely understood by 99% of just about everybody is a recipe for complete and utter disaster. People thinking of coming here on holiday hate it! So what do they do….go else where! Talk about a government shooting themselves in the foot!!!!!

  18. You and all non-bureaucrats are right, Al. Now we have to live with the consequences of the actions of panicky politicians trying to accommodate the troika, which is looming in Spain… There’s been a lot of foot-shooting in the EU fiasco, and it’s not over yet.
    It’s not only people coming on holiday who hate it!

    At least, there’s not so much confusion now it’s easy enough to get a card after crossing the border.
    The ‘practical’ reason why alternative ways of collecting tolls were introduced is that the ‘SCUT’ (‘toll-free’)motorways weren`t built to accommodate booths…

    This inaccurate article still remains to muddy the waters.
    Heigh ho, Roley!

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