M50 Toll – Comparison of Prices and Options

The M50  tolling system has been up and running since August  2008 . The system is operated by BetEire Flow – which is a French consortium. In 2010 they made a profit of   €1.65 million .

There are 3 different options for drivers using the M50:

Option 1. Pay as You Go –  : Your car registration number will be logged by cameras as you pass through the toll bridge/plaza. You will then be liable for a €3.10 euro toll which you can either :

a) pay online with a credit or debit card at eflow.ie or
b) pay by credt/debit card over the  telephone on 1890 50 10 50.
c) pay by cash or card at Payzone outlets (many newsagents and convenience shops)
You must pay before 8pm the day after you use the M50 otherwise penalty charges kick in.

This pay as you go option is really only viable for the people who maybe only use the M50 a couple of times a year. Apart from the hassle and time to make individual payments – the charge is much higher for this option. For example 240 trips a year over the toll plaza would cost you €744 euro if you do it this way. (assuming you remember to pay each time and don’t incur any penalties or fines). This compares with €518.52 for the same journeys if you go for the cheapest tag option.

Option 2: Register with eflow.ie for a number plate recognition account. You give them your vehicle details and either debit card or bank details. As you use the M50 your registration is logged and Eflow charge you automatically each month for all the trips you made. The toll is €2.60 for this option. No monthly admin fees or tags. It is more for the casual user and means you will not have to worry about penalties if you can’t get to a Payzone in time . You can register  at Eflow.ie or over the phone on : 1890 50 10 50

Option 3 – Register for a  Toll Tag Account
An electronic tag on the windscreen of your car is used to register your use of the M50 and the toll charges of just €2.10 euro a trip are deducted from your toll tag account. With a pre-pay tag  account – it is topped up automatically from your credit card or bank account when your balance runs low. Eflow offer the only post-pay tag – which can be paid by Direct Debit or Laser Card.

This option has several choices – just to confuse consumers even more. There are several tag providers with slightly different prices.

For M50 users who pass the toll plaza more than 5 times a month the cheapest option is the tag account from  Eflow.ie Eflow.ie has another advantage  – because only Eflow offer a post-pay tag option with no preloading or auto top up . You just pay for what you owe each month .(plus 1.23 euro admin a month). Pay by Direct Debit or Laser (No Credit Cards)

The slightly cheaper option – on paper-  for drivers doing less than 6 journeys a month is the “Pay as you Toll  Plus “account from TollTag.ie. The tag is free and they do not charge a monthly fee – but instead charge 20.1c (10%) on each toll.  If you are going to  use the M50 more than 5 times a month the tolltag option gradually becomes more expensive than Eflow and the normal Tolltag.ie account.

Some figures and examples of annual toll costs

For 240 trips a year ( 20 trips a month )

Cheapest :   TollTag.ie €518.52   (1.21 monthly fee)
Eflow
  and Easytrip  – €518.76 (Free Tag and €1.23 admin fee)
Tolltag.ie €554.40 (Pay as you Toll Plus) Free tag+ 10% admin fee fee
Tolltag.ie €558 (Pay as you Toll 10% maintenence fee and a purchase fee.)
Eflow Video Recognition Account €624
Non Registration - €744

For a daily M50 user the cheapest tag option will save you €225.48 a year in toll charges compared to not registering for any type of account.
The cheapest Tag option will save you €40 compared to the most expensive one.

Costs for exactly 2 Trips a month (24 a year)
€55.44 for Tolltag.ie “Pay as you Toll Plus” account (€2.10 plus 10% per trip)
€62.40 For Eflow Video Recognition Account (2.60 a trip) (Post Pay)
€65.16  for Free Tag and €1 a month fee plus €2 per trip ( Eflow.ie,  )
So if you are going to be using the M50 toll more than twice a month it will be cheaper to get a Tag rather than a Video Registration account.

Figures correct as at June 2014

There are discussions about changing the M50 tolls to introduce more toll points but with lower charges. See Possible M50 Toll Changes here

19 Comments

  1. Fiona says:

    Hi,

    I travel to Dublin to Cork most weekends, the tolls on the M7 and M8 amount to €7.40 for the weekend,so €29.60 a month, €355.20 a year.
    Is there any of the electronic tags that would help reduce this cost?
    Thank you.

  2. Darina says:

    hi,

    i will be using the toll twice a day going southbound and back what is the cheapest option for me? i will be using 10times a week 40 times a month?

    • Money Saving Expert says:

      Darina – as it says in the article –
      “For M50 users who pass the toll plaza more than 5 times a month the cheapest option is the tag account from Eflow.ie . (The lack of VAT on the admin fee makes a small difference.) Eflow.ie has another advantage – because only Eflow offer a post-pay tag option with no preloading or auto top up . You just pay for what you owe each month”

  3. moneymate says:

    Has anyone else had problems registering for a video recognition account. The eflow system just won’t work for me. I get to the final stage enter credit card details and then it just goes back to the same page all the time (tried in firefox and IE… What a system. !!

  4. john says:

    can i pay by cash as i only use the toll on the m50 once a year

  5. Rene says:

    Do you know a news agent or convenience store in county Limerick to pay the M50 toll?

  6. Damian says:

    Hi,

    Can you please supply a list of outlets where we can buy credit for eaZYpass or supply a link to a website

    Thanks,

  7. lisa says:

    What if you are using one car for both business and personal use. Can I have two seperate accounts for one car. If there will be no reciepts it will make claiming very difficult in work..

  8. eugene mc says:

    reply to kevin 15th august -easypass looks like best option for 2 cars but
    require €80 upfront and treat deal as two seperate accounts-not 2 cars from one account even for infrequent users

  9. Moneymate says:

    In response to some of the questions/; – re VAT – there is no VAT on the toll charges from Aug 30th. So in effect the prices have gone up 21%!

    Also – each car is supposed to have it’s own tag. You are not supposed to swap tags between cars. But – as mentioned in the article – do not pay for a tag – get one from a provider that does not charge for the tags.

    No expiry on tag credit – it carries over year to year.