Oklahoma Turnpikes are going to be changing in a big way. Drivers need to be aware that the system will be changing to cashless in the upcoming months! See details below.
Oklahoma Turnpike Changes – Turnpike Authority Announcements:
If you haven't yet seen it in the news, the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority just announced that Oklahoma toll roads (turnpikes) will be moving to a fully cashless system starting this year. Changes are scheduled to start July 25th.
If you have been through Oklahoma before (or live here like we do) you're aware that the PikePass system already allows you to travel turnpikes without stopping to pay tolls. Currently you can also stop and pay by cash, either at an automated booth that takes change only, or at a manned booth.
I have used PikePass for years and it's a great way to save time. I also don't have to worry about having cash or coins on hand for longer day trips –and I don't have to stop. We travel often to fun places to see around the state, and one thing I know I would forget before we leave is having that $2-3 on hand for tolls! The PikePass is nice to have.
What If you Don't Have Pikepass:
If you are reading this wondering, OK now am I going to get a ticket in the mail?? I don't have a PikePass and I don't really want to sign up! Hang on– Don't fret!
The good news is that no one has to sign up for a PikePass right away. If you choose not to use PikePass, the new system can scan your tag and send a bill in the mail. Bills will be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle.
However, there is an extra cost associated with having a bill mailed to you vs. ordering a PikePass. The news announced it will be “about 75 percent higher” to have a bill sent to you (via KFOR News 4).
Why Change the Current System?
According to KFOR's report and the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority, safety is a big aspect. They hope to keep traffic moving along and prevent safety hazards.
In my own experience traveling Oklahoma I've seen toll booths and machines not work or be out of order. I don't like worrying about little things like paying tolls correctly when we are on a road trip, so hopefully the transition will help with these issues!
How You Can Be a Savvy Traveler and Be in the Know:
One of the most important thinks you can do is to be informed on your road travel! Here are some helpful resources:
- Oklahoma Turnpike Authority — follow them on Twitter for real time updates
- Oklahoma Department of Transportation— I follow them on Facebook and do an intentional check before a road trip. This has literally changed our plans in the past! Major road closures are listed here.
- Oklahoma State Parks— be in the know before you stay or visit. Some parks have COVID related capacity issues right now.
- National Park Service website. See COVID restrictions, capacity recommendations and more.
Thanks for reading– hopefully this information has been helpful!
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