Topic Wiki

Any recognizable member can PM @chinagel to add their car to an account for short term use.


How toll roads/Bridges can be paid in Florida & How to minimize surcharges from car rental companies:
•   Cash when that is a viable option (many/most are unmanned, so this is often not a viable option)
•   SunPass Account: There are two options:
o   SunPass PRO – Is a portable Transponder with suction cups (transponder cost $15)  (designed/intended for easy moving from car to car). Minimum starting balance is $10. There is no monthly fee. This is linked to credit card for auto-refill.  Save up to 25% on tolls compared to cash. This works outside Florida wherever E-ZPass is accepted. FOR CAR RENTALS: Sunpass strongly recommends users log into their account and add the rental vehicle’s license plate, along with the start and end date for the planned usage of the rental.
o   SunPass Mini - Window-sticker-transponder (transponder cost $5; available at CVS, Publix, many grocery stores). linked to credit card for auto-refill.  Save up to 25% on tolls. (harder to move between cars, intended to remain in one car. some have attached that to the windshield using scotch tape (rather than remove the plastic and using the sticky surface on the Mini), and have then moved it to another vehicle.
•   TOLL-BY-PLATE: Cars not registered with SunPass are automatically are billed using TOLL-BY-PLATE. TOLL-BY-PLATE is an electronic toll collection system that captures an image of a vehicle’s license plate when an active SunPass transponder is not detected. The vehicle’s first-listed registered owner will receive an invoice for accumulated toll amounts, plus a $2.50 administrative charge, per invoice. (If there is a cash-pay option, and toll is unpaid there is also a violation fee). Toll prices are up to 25% more than for SunPass customers. (This is the default option for many rental cars). (There is a prepaid toll-by-plate option that avoids the surcharge). FOR CAR RENTALS: (Prepaid TOLL-BY-PLATE) customers MUST log into their account and add the vehicle’s license plate, along with the start and end dates for the planned usage of the rental.
•   TOLL-BY-PLATE PREPAID: There is an option to “Register” with TOLL-BY-PLATE and maintain a prepaid balance, to avoid the $2.50 surcharge per invoice.


ADDITIONAL NOTES FOR VISITORS RENTING CARS:
•   You may (by the terms of the agreement) use your SunPass transponder when renting a vehicle as long as you add the rental vehicle and license plate information to your SunPass account. When you return your rental, be sure to remove your transponder or additional toll charges may continue to register. If you leave your transponder in a rental vehicle and cannot retrieve it, you will need to immediately report the device lost or stolen to avoid additional charges.
o   To add a rental vehicle to your SunPass account: Log in to your SunPass account / Click on "Transponders and Vehicles" / Click "Add Another Vehicle" and fill out the information on the page / Be sure to add the Start and End Date/Time / Check the Rental Vehicle box / Click "Add Vehicle"
o      Several people report succesfully registering the rental car to a SunPass account without having the transponder present. It seems that the system first looks for the physical transponder and bills that account, if no transponder is recognized, the system reads the plate, and checks if there is an account associated with that plate (that's why registering the rental care can be important) and bills that account. If not, then it reverts to the PAY-BY-TOLL, and bills the owner of the car (i.e. rental car company). The system reading the plate is reported to occur with a lag (few hours?), so you may be able to register the car shortly after the first use and still have that billed to the SunPass account.
o   Per Sunpass: Also, keep in mind that if you purchase and activate a SunPass Mini for use in your rental, once removed, the SunPass Mini will no longer function and cannot be reattached to another vehicle’s windshield.
o   If you traveled through a tolling point and an active transponder was not detected, an invoice will be mailed to the registered owner of the vehicle. The invoice will include your toll charges and a monthly $2.50 administrative fee.
•   Sunpass PRO and Mini transponders can be purchased online at sunpass.com, or at many local grocery stores (Publix, CVS, etc.. .) The account need to activate and registered with a credit card.
•   Position the transponder to the right or left of the rearview mirror. If the windshield has a solar tint strip, install the transponder at least 2 inches below the strip.
•   SunPass Pro vs SunPass Mini: (1) PRO transponder cost $10 more (2) Is designed/easier to move from car to car (3) PRO works wherever E-ZPass is accepted Mini only works in FL, GA, and NC. (4) PRO can be used on motorcycles.
•   SunPass vs Toll-By-Plate: (1) Sunpass requires purchase of transponder and registration (Toll-by-plate does not, but Toll-by-plate “prepaid-option” requires registration) (2) saves an average of 25% on tolls in FL (3) Can be used for Parking in certain locations e.g. at Airport parking (4) Is a viable way to minimize surcharges from rental car companies. (5) There are a few toll facilities in Florida that don’t accept TOLL-BY-PLATE/TOLL-BY-PLATE-Prepaid (primarily in the Orlando and Ft. Myers areas), which could result in additional fees: My understanding is these do accept SunPass. See https://www.sunpass.com/en/common/docs/toll_map_prepaid_tbp.pdf 
•   Most car rental companies (Hertz, Avis, Budget, Payless,National, Alamo, Enterprise) charge $3-$5/day PLUS tolls (at the TOLL-BY-PLATE rates). Dollar/Thrifty/Fox charge $9-$11/day but that includes the cost of tolls. See: https://www.sunpass.com/en/tolls/rentalVehicles.shtml
•   Some Florida highways have “Sunpass express lanes” (also called managed lanes) where you pay a toll for travelling in the “express lanes” to save time/traffic (not common in the NorthEast US)
•   Unlike E-ZPass there is no monthly fee for maintaining a SunPass account (NY and NJ charge $1/month)
•   E-ZPass is accepted on all Florida highways as of June 2021. There have been reports of those transponders not being recognized (post #103, #110, and I had this experience). Perhaps they need to be placed closer to center of windshield?? 
•   The windshield on some cars prevent tolls from reading the transponder (https://www.sunpass.com/en/about/windshieldInstallation.shtml)
•   Sunpass can be reached at 1-888-TOLL-FLA (1-888-865-5352)


Author Topic: SunPass in Florida  (Read 24428 times)

Offline Thingywingy

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SunPass in Florida
« on: December 29, 2015, 05:18:35 PM »
I'm helping someone plan a trip to Florida for almost a month. NJ EZ-Pass doesn't work there according to their site. Any way to get a Florida EZ-Pass, without a Florida address?

Last time they went, the rental agency suckered them into paying about $5/day for the pass...

How common are toll roads between West Palm Beach, and Miami?
« Last Edit: February 03, 2016, 10:41:31 AM by Chaikel »
I am sometimes accused of overthinking things. I am still mulling over whether that accusation has merit.

Offline popcorn1508

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2015, 05:20:30 PM »
I'm helping someone plan a trip to Florida for almost a month. NJ EZ-Pass doesn't work there according to their site. Any way to get a Florida EZ-Pass, without a Florida address?

Last time they went, the rental agency suckered them into paying about $5/day for the pass...

How common are toll roads between West Palm Beach, and Miami?
You need a sunpass which you can pick up in these locations or order one here

Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2015, 02:36:20 PM »
You need a sunpass which you can pick up in these locations or order one here
I want to buy one online, but it's asking for a plate number. Can I just enter my NY plate number and then use it with a rental car?

Offline stbaum

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2015, 02:48:33 PM »
following
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Offline yakrot

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EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2015, 02:54:21 PM »
I want to buy one online, but it's asking for a plate number. Can I just enter my NY plate number and then use it with a rental car?
i think sun pass in many places actually uses the license plate as a primary way of billing not just a backup like they do in ny.( it's called plate-pass or something like that)

If there is a way to add your rental cars plate after you take it out, it would then be possible to register it to your NY license plate and add the rental plate afterwards , this is all in theory though I don't know if it will work

Offline ariIs

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2015, 03:01:53 PM »

i think sun pass in many places actually uses the license plate as a primary way of billing not just a backup like they do in ny.( it's called plate-pass or something like that)

If there is a way to add your rental cars plate after you take it out, it would then be possible to register it to your NY license plate and add the rental plate afterwards , this is all in theory though I don't know if it will work

The rental cars are generally already registered (so they can charge you those obscene fees) so I doubt it would work registering the same plate again.
You can try to read up on which rental agency charged less fees for the toll pass. They generally have a cap of like $20-30 in extra fees per rental, plus the actual tolls.
Silvercar is good about. It charging the extra fees, but a rental for a month might be more expensive with them.

Offline tzifanya54

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2015, 09:02:07 PM »
i think sun pass in many places actually uses the license plate as a primary way of billing not just a backup like they do in ny.( it's called plate-pass or something like that)

If there is a way to add your rental cars plate after you take it out, it would then be possible to register it to your NY license plate and add the rental plate afterwards , this is all in theory though I don't know if it will work
Yup. When I drove my own car down to Florida they just billed me the tolls and no fees. It went through my NY liscensce plate.

Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2015, 07:28:26 PM »
Alright, I think I figured it out.

I just purchased a Mini Sticker Transponder and just entered a bogus plate number. Once my account was created, I'm able to add/modify vehicles online, so as soon as I get to my rental car I'll just go online and update my account with the plate number.

According to the SunPass website the the “SUNPASS ONLY”, “E-PASS ONLY” and “LEEWAY ONLY” lanes can be used immediately after entering your vehicle info. Other lanes might take until the next morning to activate.

Only thing I still need to figure out is how to use the sticker without actually affixing it to the window so that I can reuse it next time. Might have to get a bit creative.

Offline lunatic

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2015, 07:30:46 PM »
How are you making sure that you don't get charged by the rental car company at the same time

Offline popcorn1508

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2015, 07:47:38 PM »
How are you making sure that you don't get charged by the rental car company at the same time
If you do get billed you will just have to send in proof that you used you own ez-pass/sunpass and they will refund you.

Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2015, 08:06:50 PM »
How are you making sure that you don't get charged by the rental car company at the same time
I'm hoping that registering the plate online to my SunPass account will make sure the rental company doesn't get any charges for it.

Offline mmb

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #11 on: January 01, 2016, 11:54:08 AM »
I'm hoping that registering the plate online to my SunPass account will make sure the rental company doesn't get any charges for it.
SunPass has the option online to add in a rental car with its license plate

Offline ad120

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2016, 02:26:17 PM »
Sticker can only be used on one car and cannot be transferred.

Offline Palm5

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #13 on: January 01, 2016, 03:05:50 PM »
Sticker can only be used on one car and cannot be transferred.

+1

You will need to paste it on the window. I actually have a surpass which you can pre pay and borrow from me, I'm located in Brooklyn.

Offline ad120

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2016, 01:43:26 AM »
I have one as well.
Well worth the $20.

Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2016, 10:05:09 AM »
Question is if I find a way to affix it to the window without peeling off the sticker, why wouldn't I be able to reuse it?

Offline jaywhy

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2016, 10:42:11 AM »
Question is if I find a way to affix it to the window without peeling off the sticker, why wouldn't I be able to reuse it?
If you can affix it to the window in a removable manner then you can reuse it. The issue is that it uses the windshield glass as an antennae so you would need to really play around with it to make sure it works.

Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2016, 10:45:33 AM »
If you can affix it to the window in a removable manner then you can reuse it. The issue is that it uses the windshield glass as an antennae so you would need to really play around with it to make sure it works.
Interesting. Will see what I can come up with once I get it.

Offline stbaum

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2016, 04:13:26 PM »
Ftr I rented from Avis. Got charged $16 plus $4 for every day I used it plus tolls. May not be the best deal out there but certainly worth it in terms of zero hassle
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Offline Joe4007

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Re: EZ-Pass in Florida?
« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2016, 04:15:01 PM »
Ftr I rented from Avis. Got charged $16 plus $4 for every day I used it plus tolls. May not be the best deal out there but certainly worth it in terms of zero hassle
What's the $16 for?