South Luzon Expressway toll gate

Convenience, that's the thing that most of us are after – especially when we're traveling. This is why the electronic toll collection (ETC) system was integrated at toll gates in various expressways. This technology uses electronic chips and readers for you to be able to pass through the toll gate without rolling your window down. 

The e-pass—the one we use for passing through the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX)—uses Radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. However, the e-pass device relies on batteries that needs constant changing. Another disadvantage of the e-pass is that it can be taken out of the vehicle, so people tend to misplace it.

Now, the SLEX management is replacing the e-pass device with a much more secure and permanent solution – hence, the RFID tag. So, how secure and permanent is this RFID tag thing? Well, it isn’t transferable from one car to another because it’s permanently attached to your car. Also, bye-bye batteries.

I want this. What should I do to get one? 

Before you rush in at any respective office, you need a few things with you as requirements. 

  • Copy of your vehicle's registration (OR/CR) 
  • Valid IDs (driver's license, passport, government-issued IDs) 

You may also use your credit card if you opt for an automatic reload on your account. Be sure to also bring the car you like to be tagged with the RFID sticker. 

If you already have these in your possession, don't embark on just yet. The next thing you need to do is to accomplish the Autosweep RFID Subscription form, which you can download through autosweeprfid.com. Upon completing the form, you're now good to go to any of these RFID installation sites found here

Once in the RFID installation sites, look for the RFID application tents/tables and submit the form that you have completed, along with your car's registration papers and valid IDs. The person in charge will ask you to present the car that you will use. Before sticking the RFID, the authorized personnel will test if it's working with the use of a handheld device. 

Normally, the sticker will be mounted at the center part of your car’s windshield. However, if you have tints installed, the person-in-charge will use an alternate headlight-mounted RFID sticker. 

After this, you will be asked to go to their printing station for the RFID card. The card will contain your account number, vehicle plate number, and QR code. All information will be printed on a white plastic with the size of a regular ATM or credit card. After the printing, you will be asked to hand out P500 as minimum prepaid load for your RFID. You may pay higher if you wish to do so.

I want this but I already have an e-pass. What do I do? 

That won’t be a problem, actually, as your e-pass balance can be transferred to your new RFID tag. First, you need to accomplish the same Subscription Form (stated above) to subscribe to Autosweep RFID. You will then need to complete the Authorization To Transfer Balance form so you could transfer your remaining e-pass balance to your RFID account. You are then required to surrender your old e-pass device to complete the process.

Your new RFID account will be credited with the remaining balance of your e-pass, which will be completed within 7 days. 

Come to think of it — the advantages of having an RFID account can extend to even making car registration renewal faster and effortless. This is because all the information needed are already encoded on your account. All they have to do is to download your data and voila, your car registration renewal will be as easy as pie.

Photo courtesy of RioHondo.

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