Questions and Answers
Q) What do rideshare drivers need to do before using Massachusetts tollways?
A) Nothing: the TNC companies (Uber, Lyft etc.) handle everything. If you are properly set up for Uber or Lyft in Massachusetts, you can drive on Massachusetts Tollways.
Q) What toll rates do rideshare drivers pay
A) Rideshare drivers pay the Commercial Operating Vehicle Rate when they are providing Transportation Network Services and pay the Private Operating Vehicle Rate when not providing Transportation Network Services. It does not matter if a passenger is in the car, the TNC driver will pay the commercial rate when providing Transportation Network Services. For instance, if the TNC driver goes through a toll on the way to pick up a passenger the TNC driver will pay the commercial rate.
Q) Do TNC drivers need an EZDriveMA account?
A) No, but TNC Drivers (and everyone else) will pay higher rates on Massachusetts tollways if they do not have an EZDriveMA account.
There are two types of EZDriveMA accounts.
1) The E-ZPass MA type where you have an E-ZPass device in your car, and
2) The Pay By Plate MA account, where the license plate is read as the vehicle goes through the toll plaza.
Generally the best option (the one that gives drivers the lowest rates) is the E-ZPass MA account. The Pay By Plate MA account requires your license plate to be read and that results in slightly higher toll rates.
If you have no account at all, you will pay the higher "pay by plate" rates plus a service fee to cover the cost of mailing the invoice to the registered owner of the vehicle.
Billing details that TNC drivers should be aware of
Even when a toll is incurred by a rideshare driver who is providing a Transportation Network Service, the initial charge that appears in the system will generally be at the private rate.
Reason: until the Mass Tollway Authority gets an electronic report from the TNC company they have no way of knowing that the car that went through the toll was operating as a rideshare vehicle and was providing a Transportation Network Service. If the car is listed in the e-zdrivema.com system as a private car, the charge will initially be at the private rate. The rate will typically be adjusted up to the commercial rate within a day or two (when the Mass Tollway Authority gets the electronic report,) but it can take up to two weeks.
The billing process requires the TNC company (Uber, Lyft etc.) to send an electronic report to the Mass Tollway Authority, that report is cross referenced against the information already in the system and tolls are adjusted as necessary.
The electronic report may be sent extremely fast or it can take up to two weeks.