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View Full Version : Do you buy sunpass when you rent a car in orlando?



disneymom
26-02-2012, 12:47 PM
Oh Im a worrier arent I :point:

last time we hired a car out in Orlando we spent a small fortune on toll roads and I started to wonder if I should have said yes to buying a sunpass card from dollar car hire

What do you think? is it worth doing that, are there any savings or is it just for convenience?

Slowhand
26-02-2012, 01:15 PM
I`ve never bothered to purchase a Sun Pass as I hardly use the toll roads when I am in the Orlando area.
Having spent quite a lot in tolls on those times when we have visited the Keys or Vero Beach though, I reckon that I would buy the pass in those circumstances.

Wendy
26-02-2012, 01:26 PM
We buy it every time, it takes away the worry if you haven't got any change and it's an un-manned toll :yes:

We tend to use the toll roads as nine times out of 10 they are less congested and quicker.

A friend did look into us buying our own, but I don't think would have worked out for us :unsure:

keith
26-02-2012, 01:30 PM
How does it work then? You rent a card from the car place and it has so much prepaid ? Or it racks up the charges and they bill you at the end?

catrancher
26-02-2012, 02:25 PM
How does it work then? You rent a card from the car place and it has so much prepaid ? Or it racks up the charges and they bill you at the end?

It's a transponder that you affix to the windshield of your car Keith. You can fund it in a number of different ways. Either automatically via a credit card when your balance reaches a pre-defined lower limit (set by you), or you can fund it with a credit card online, or pay cash to fund it at various locations around the state. More info here (https://www.sunpass.com/indexNoMobile).

Tom (:macwave:... I prefer toll house cookies to toll roads!)

Slowhand
26-02-2012, 02:46 PM
I know that the Sunpass is ok for the Turnpike, but is it valid for the 528?

catrancher
26-02-2012, 03:00 PM
I know that the Sunpass is ok for the Turnpike, but is it valid for the 528?

Yep. :yes:

Works on the 528 (Beachline Expressway) too. Also supposedly saves you 25 cents on the toll from I-4 all the way out to the Banana River. $3.25 cash or $3.00 with SunPass.

BTW - they've also got special rental car programs where you don't actually have to have one of the transponders.

Tom (:macwave:... :drive2:)

Slowhand
26-02-2012, 03:22 PM
Thanks Tom :thumbsup:

Tink
26-02-2012, 04:25 PM
Sun Pass and EZ pass are interchangeable (meaning that they both work on all Florida toll roads). EZ Pass is the one that you see posted, so it gets confusing when you don't see postings allowing Sun Pass.

We've searched and I think (stress on think there!) that Herself has finally found a way (buried deep in the requirements and directions) using SUN PASS (not EZ pass) you can purchase your own transponder (about $25) and then activate it through Credit Card use, even though you are not a Florida Resident. Will keep you posted on that, but from what she's learned so far it would take a laptop (or internet access) and the license plate number of the rental car; then you would log on to attach the license plate number to the Sun Pass transponder and off you go (after telling the connection site what the credit card number is and how much you are authorizing at one time). Sounds a bit complicated but for folks who visit often, it really could work out to be a significant savings. :yes:

I'm not sure, but I think that if you "rent" Sun Pass from a car rental place you are overpaying (potentially). With true self owned Sun Pass, the tolls are cheaper than with cash, so keep that in mind.

catrancher
26-02-2012, 05:56 PM
I'm not sure, but I think that if you "rent" Sun Pass from a car rental place you are overpaying (potentially).

That's very true, Tink. At least as far as I know. I "think" the car rental agencies charge you about $6.95/day for the SunPass. If that's so, it's highway robbery!

Tom (:macwave:... :drive2:... again)

Tink
26-02-2012, 05:59 PM
Yes. You are paying for convenience and that does have some worth.

However, use of a transponder in Florida equals lower tolls, so they are really ripping off the customer with those rates (unless you intend to drive to and from Key West each day). :rolleyes:

Esmeralda
26-02-2012, 07:32 PM
I wouldn't bother, we did go through a sun pass toll once by mistake, we were busy chatting and didn't see it until too late, we went back and the guy said no worries you'll not get charged once but any more than that and you will. However once back home we got charged by the rental car company so we had to pay the toll plus the admin charge for that :(

Slowhand
26-02-2012, 07:52 PM
At least as far as I know. I "think" the car rental agencies charge you about $6.95/day for the SunPass. If that's so, it's highway robbery!


That settles it then!
I won`t bother with it and pay the tolls as I go along as I have done up to now :yes:

Wendy
26-02-2012, 09:15 PM
With the rental cars you don't have a transponder, the rental company has an account and the tolls get charged to it and if you have pre-paid you don't get billed.

If you go through a toll and you haven't pre-paid you get charged for the violation and also an administration fee.

It is expensive, but we like the convenience and we use the 528 a lot :yes: I think we paid about $60 last year :unsure:

keith
26-02-2012, 09:23 PM
With the rental cars you don't have a transponder, the rental company has an account and the tolls get charged to it and if you have pre-paid you don't get billed.

If you go through a toll and you haven't pre-paid you get charged for the violation and also an administration fee.

It is expensive, but we like the convenience and we use the 528 a lot :yes: I think we paid about $60 last year :unsure:

So basically they're sorta gambling on you not using so many tolls as to go over the "6.95" or whatever a day they charge?

If you do, you win, if you dont, they win ?

Wendy
26-02-2012, 09:54 PM
So basically they're sorta gambling on you not using so many tolls as to go over the "6.95" or whatever a day they charge?

If you do, you win, if you dont, they win ?

:yes: I would imagine they always win though, we keep saying we are going to work out how much we would spend on tolls but we always forget :lol:

keith
26-02-2012, 10:07 PM
:yes: I would imagine they always win though, we keep saying we are going to work out how much we would spend on tolls but we always forget :lol:

I do get it though, not having to worry at all if you went through a toll.

On the way to Berns steakhouse, we turned right off a major road and immediately there was SOME kind of sign about chargeable something or other, we were past it as soon as looking at it. It wasnt a "normal" toll.

I thought hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm :/ I wonder if that'll be something that comes back to bite us.

C'est la vie and all that but yeah I can see the point of knowing that it's all taken care of

Johnie
26-02-2012, 10:27 PM
I wish the SunPass system was set up to work with the other toll programs. I have a Smart Tag here in Virginia and I can use it in DC, WV, NY, NJ, MD, etc. I cannot use it in FL. It would be easier to just take it with me on vacation.

Wendy
26-02-2012, 10:37 PM
I wish the SunPass system was set up to work with the other toll programs. I have a Smart Tag here in Virginia and I can use it in DC, WV, NY, NJ, MD, etc. I cannot use it in FL. It would be easier to just take it with me on vacation.

I vaguely remember something about them becoming intergrated at some point in the future or was that another scheme :unsure:

Johnie
26-02-2012, 10:55 PM
I certainly hope so! That would make my life so much easier :yes:

I have read that all rental cars are going to have the transponders put in them and that some tolls would be unmanned and you would have to pay the rental car company regardless. I don't like that idea at all. I would like to use the rental car transponder but I don't think it's right to have to pay a per day usage when I wont use it every day.

keith
26-02-2012, 10:55 PM
We've searched and I think (stress on think there!) that Herself has finally found a way (buried deep in the requirements and directions) using SUN PASS (not EZ pass) you can purchase your own transponder (about $25) and then activate it through Credit Card use, even though you are not a Florida Resident. Will keep you posted on that, but from what she's learned so far it would take a laptop (or internet access) and the license plate number of the rental car; then you would log on to attach the license plate number to the Sun Pass transponder and off you go (after telling the connection site what the credit card number is and how much you are authorizing at one time). Sounds a bit complicated but for folks who visit often, it really could work out to be a significant savings. :yes:


This looks like it's spot on :yes:

The recommended transponder is $25 called the sunpass portable (there seems to be a mini stick on for $4.99 but I guess theyre saying that wont come off so easy).

Then you can top the account up even using cash! now since you can buy the transponders over the counter and top up with cash, that would seem to get over the obstacle that most of these things have for UK visitors (credit card not registered to a US address)

obviously $25 pays for a fair few tolls but worth it I think if either you fancy the rental car company's scheme or go out there a lot and pay a lot of tolls.

Tink
27-02-2012, 01:38 AM
I knew it could take cash, but wasn't sure if that were available to visitors. It makes it even better that it is. :yes: The $25 just purchases the transponder. It will require an additional amount to activate it, and provide for toll payment.

uscwest
27-02-2012, 03:04 AM
I have both Sun Pass and Smart Tag, though, like Johnie I wish they were interchangeable. Unless you are doing a LOT of driving $6.95/day from the rental company is, to me, absurd. When we drive to/from Disney from Northern VA I have a tendency to get off of the I-4 at Sanford and take the 417. Using the Sun Pass I don't have to keep stopping at the toll plazas.

keith
27-02-2012, 10:18 AM
I knew it could take cash, but wasn't sure if that were available to visitors. It makes it even better that it is. :yes: The $25 just purchases the transponder. It will require an additional amount to activate it, and provide for toll payment.

yep I think you have to immediately top up with at least $10.

When I said $25 pays for a lot of tolls I was thinking more that if someone were to think about purchasing a unit for $25, they'd have to think well, instead of doing that I could just use the $25 towards the tolls and that may well get them through their entire holiday anyway!

So in a way, the investment is only worth it for someone going back frequently.

I'm definitely pondering it. Although we MOSTLY avoid tolls, it'd be nice not to worry about coins when we dont

Wendy
27-02-2012, 11:40 AM
We have thought about buying one, but it was too confusing :lol:

OK, so there is the initial out lay of $25 for the first year, but you would be saving every year after, I think we might look into it again. I guess it depends on how long it takes to register the rental car's registration when you give them the details :unsure: We use the 417 so it's tolls straight away for us.

keith
27-02-2012, 11:47 AM
OK, so there is the initial out lay of $25 for the first year, but you would be saving every year after, I think we might look into it again. I guess it depends on how long it takes to register the rental car's registration when you give them the details :unsure: We use the 417 so it's tolls straight away for us.

Once you get your device you get an online account and you just go into there and put in the rental car registration.

I guess perhaps they have a phone line too but I dont know

Wendy
27-02-2012, 12:10 PM
Once you get your device you get an online account and you just go into there and put in the rental car registration.

I guess perhaps they have a phone line too but I dont know

Hhhmm okay, thanks :)

uscwest
27-02-2012, 02:30 PM
Wendy, the $25 is a one time fee. You don't pay it every year. If you put a CC on the account it will automatically add however many $$ you tell it to add whenever your account balance runs low.

Johnie
27-02-2012, 03:31 PM
In Virginia, if you link a credit card to the account, you don't have to pay the fee for the transponder. I have mine set up that way. Does Florida work like that?

uscwest
27-02-2012, 09:45 PM
In Virginia, if you link a credit card to the account, you don't have to pay the fee for the transponder. I have mine set up that way. Does Florida work like that? I thought sure I still paid the transponder fee and I definitely have a CC linked.

Johnie
27-02-2012, 10:39 PM
That's the way they market it here in central VA. They want you to link a cc to the account and it will top it off when the account balance gets down to $10. Ok I checked the smart tag site in VA. If you sign up for the automatic replenishment, then they waive the transsponder deposit.

You can use your E-ZPass on all toll roads with specially marked "E-ZPass" lanes. This currently includes roads in Virginia, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.



I wish they'd add Florida

GoofyMac
03-04-2012, 12:49 PM
We just make sure we have quite a few singles. I think there are 4 tolls on the way to Walt Disney World after getting on the Turnpike. We thought about it for a total of a minute. It seems that The State of Florida is taking advantage of the tourist traveling to Walt Disney World.

Goofymac

uscwest
03-04-2012, 02:49 PM
We just make sure we have quite a few singles. I think there are 4 tolls on the way to Walt Disney World after getting on the Turnpike. We thought about it for a total of a minute. It seems that The State of Florida is taking advantage of the tourist traveling to Walt Disney World.

Goofymac

However, most of them only take change, not dollar bills. And if you do a lot of traveling on the toll roads, the Sun Pass may be a better deal, especially since you can roll right through some of them either at speed or slowing down.