With the 30th April looming ever closer and SANRAL’s advertising to ‘get tagged’, many motorists are asking the question, “do we or don’t we get e-tags before the 30th April. OUTA would like to offer some thoughts and views on this subject as follows:
Firstly the decision to get an e-tag or not lies squarely with the consumer. SANRAL have offered a discount to the ‘tagged’ motorist as a motivation to entice road users to sign into the system. By signing up and getting tagged, SANRAL have more control to manage the system better and thereby makes their lives and the business of billing a lot easier.
Making the decision not to be tagged will not place you at risk in any way. All it means is that your cost of travel will be higher when using the toll roads – if it goes ahead. You will still be able to get your driver’s license and vehicle licenses if you are not an e-tagged motorist. You will also still be able to pay for the use of tolls at their e-toll centres or over the internet, but in a manner that gives you total control. The less the number of tagged vehicles, the greater the administrative burden and with a low uptake of e-tags, the toll process could become unmanageable and too cumbersome to operate. We believe that if the ‘no tag’ result is very high, this may even bring the system to a halt in time and force the authorities to look closely at the number of other more efficient funding mechanisms suggested by so many.
Then there is the matter of the court case – due to be heard in the last week of April. If an interdict is granted, you will not have to get a tag for a long time and maybe never, as it may be halted altogether. In the opinion of OUTA, you would be wise to wait until you are certain that e-tolling will commence, before your purchase and install an e-tag, i.e. if you really believe you need one. If not, go without and join millions in sending SANRAL a message that the public does not tolerate this inefficient process which was uncalled for.