As the name emphasises, the Purpose of FASTag is to move fast without stopping at the tolls & to keep your ride smooth and Quick.
FASTag is an electronic toll system in India. It uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to automatically pay your toll charges while your vehicle passes through toll plazas without making you stop and cash payments.
The system aims to improve the efficiency of toll collection, reduce traffic congestion at toll plazas, and promote digital transactions.
FASTag Functions Simplified
FASTag works through RFID technology, sensors, and a centralised payment system. Let’s dive deep into FASTag operations with a step-by-step explanation
- FASTag ID
- Account Creation
- Wallet setup
- Toll Plaza
- Payment Gateways
The FASTag has a microchip imprinted on it, which can act both as a transmitter and receiver. The Tag we stick on the windshield is a Passive RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tag. This means it doesn’t need a battery or doesn’t have energy on its own. It gets amped up by the EM energy wave, which is transmitted from the RFID reader.
They usually have a short range, so it gets activated only when the vehicle approaches the toll plaza at a closer distance.
The RFID Uses Electronic Produce Code (EPC) through which your vehicle has a unique ID. During your FASTag account creation, you are supposed to submit your documents regarding your vehicle details and personal information. Based on your Information, your code is generated differently from other vehicles and made exclusive globally.
This EPC code is a 13-digit number, making the sync unique on global standards, which GST India issues. Once your account is created, your ID gets activated in 24 hrs so that all your information is loaded into the server and the data from your RFID reader is ready to be acknowledged about your vehicle.
Your Service provider can suggest a FASTag wallet or provide one where you can maintain your account balance based on your transaction during your Travel.
You can add money to your digital wallet and check your balance based on your usage.
Every Toll Plaza has an RFID reader attached to it on the Top, which the person sitting on the Toll monitors.
Every time your vehicle crosses the Toll, the RFID reader transmits the Beam of EM wave to your FASTag, which is stuck on your vehicle’s windshield. The FASTag is powered and transmits the vehicle information to the RFID reader. This data is sent to the system with the server connected where your wallet information is accessed based on this data.
Once your wallet has enough money, your vehicle is good to pass, and the charge is deducted from your wallet, which is reflected in your account balance. You will get a notification every time your money is deducted from your wallet based on how many tolls you pass in your journey.
The online payment gateway plays a crucial role while making payments through your wallet & while recharging your wallet. Since every transaction is made digitally today, Adding money to your wallet can be challenging if your payment gateway is busy on the server.
You must choose service providers with good quality wallet and payment gateway systems for a seamless experience, especially while you are travelling through Toll plazas.
Fun Facts on RFIDs
RFID technology is not only used for tracking or enabling contactless payments. RFID tags are also used in beekeeping. Researchers have placed tiny RFID tags on individual bees to track their movements within the hive. This technology allows scientists to gain insights into bee behaviour, understand their foraging patterns, and study the dynamics of the hive.
How Fast Does Your FASTag Work?
1. Purchase and Activation
Vehicle owners must purchase a FASTag sticker from authorised banks, point-of-sale (POS) locations, or 3rd party service providers.
The respective service provider affixed the FASTag sticker to the vehicle’s windshield.
After purchasing, users must activate the FASTag by linking it to their bank account or prepaid wallet.
Things to know:
While Creating a FASTag account, these are the necessary documents you should submit to open an account
- vehicle registration details
- vehicle owner details
- valid identification document
- Bank Account Details
You must also link your FASTag to your bank account or prepaid wallet. The account can be managed through an online portal or mobile app provided by the issuing bank or service provider.
2. Wallet Access
Once you have registered, your wallet is ready and can be used in 24hrs. This wallet is maintained by your service provider for you to access. You need to maintain a sufficient balance in your FASTag account to cover the toll charges.
You can recharge your FASTag account online using net banking, debit card, credit card, or through UPI (Unified Payments Interface). Some banks also offer the option to recharge through cash at authorised outlets.
3. Vehicle Identification and Toll Plaza Approach
As the FASTag-equipped vehicle approaches a toll plaza, there are RFID readers installed overhead. These readers are equipped with antennas and sensors to capture the unique identification number of the FASTag sticker.
4. Tag Reading and Deduction
When the vehicle passes through the toll plaza, the RFID reader scans the FASTag sticker on the windshield. It captures the unique identification number associated with the vehicle owner’s information.
5. Payment Deduction
The toll plaza’s RFID reader sends the captured information to a centralised clearinghouse operated by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). The NPCI verifies the FASTag details, checks the linked account for sufficient balance, and deducts the appropriate toll amount from your account.
6. Payment Confirmation
Once the toll amount is deducted, you will receive a confirmation message or notification regarding the transaction. The barrier at the toll plaza opens, allowing the vehicle to pass through without stopping.
7. Account Reconciliation
The NPCI sends the transaction details to the issuing bank or agency, which updates your FASTag account and deducts the toll amount from your available balance.
8. Account Management
You can log into your FASTag account portal or mobile app to view transaction history, recharge your account, update vehicle or personal information, and perform other account management tasks.
You can also add money to your account wallet and maintain a sufficient balance for your next trip. FASTag provides a convenient and seamless toll payment experience for vehicle owners, reducing traffic congestion at toll plazas and promoting digital transactions.
Benefits of FASTag
- Make Cashless Transactions
- Drive without stopping on the trolls
- Save time by not waiting in long queues to pay your bill
- Easy to recharge
- Get Cashbacks and offers
Make Seamless Trips and Transactions Today!
FASTag offers numerous benefits to vehicle owners. It eliminates the need for carrying cash and the hassle of finding exact changes for toll payments. Users can conveniently recharge their FASTag accounts online, ensuring sufficient balance to cover toll charges. The system also provides notifications, letting users stay updated on their account balance and transaction history.
Moreover, FASTag has been instrumental in streamlining toll collection operations for the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). Implementing FASTag has significantly improved the overall efficiency of toll plazas, resulting in smoother traffic flow and reduced congestion.
To promote the adoption of FASTag, it has been made mandatory for all vehicles in India since February 15, 2021, to pay toll fees on national and select state highways.
FASTag is a revolutionary electronic toll collection system that has simplified the way toll payments are made in India. With its convenience, efficiency, and cashless nature, FASTag has transformed the tolling experience, benefiting vehicle owners and toll collection authorities.
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