FASTag: Know how it works, benefits
FASTag is an RFID passive tag which will help all vehicle owners to make toll payments directly from their account since the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has made it mandatory for all vehicles from December 1, 2019.
FASTag device, which comes under the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) program, is designed to employ Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to make toll payments directly while the vehicle is in motion. FASTag (RFID Tag) will be affixed on the windscreen of the vehicle and enable a customer to make the toll payments directly from their account which is linked to FASTag.
According to the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, FASTags will become mandatory for all vehicles from December 1, 2019.
Know how a FASTag works
Step 1: Whenever a vehicle will pass through the Electronic Toll Collection (ETC) lane of the Toll Plaza, the Toll Plaza system will capture the FASTag details like (Tag ID, Vehicle class, TID, etc.) and send it for processing to the acquiring bank.
Step 2: The acquiring bank will send a request to the National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) Mapper to validate the tag details.
Step 3: Once the Tag ID will get validated, NETC Mapper will respond with details like Tag Status, Vehicle class, VRN etc. If the Tag ID is not present in NETC Mapper, it will respond as the Tag ID is not registered.
Step 4: The acquirer host will calculate the appropriate toll fare and initiate a debit request to NETC system after successful validation of Tag ID from NETC Mapper.
Step 5: NETC System will switch the debit request to the respective issuer bank for debiting the account of the customer.
Step 6: Now, Issuer host will debit the linked tag holder account and send an SMS alert to the tag holder. The Issuer host will also send the response message to the NETC system. If the response is not sent within the defined TAT, the transaction will be considered as Deemed Accepted.
Step 7: NETC system will notify the response to the acquirer host.
Step 8: Lastly, acquirer host will notify to respective toll plaza system.
Benefits of using FASTag
The main objective of National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) is to evolve the current National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) ecosystem into four parties scalable model (Issuer, Acquirer, NPCI & Plaza Operator) from the existing single-party model (Issuer & Acquirer combined) being operated currently.
These are some following objectives of NETC:
- FASTag will help to reduce the waiting time at the plaza
- Accommodating the increasing traffic without additional lanes
- Eliminating the acceleration and idling, harmful vehicular emissions and air using FASTag
- Reducing congestion around plazas
- Pollution reduction
- To save fuel for the future which will also help to reduce the operating cost of the vehicles
- To provide customers the flexibility of paying their plaza bill’s with RFID Tag
- Reduce cash handling which aids in enhanced audit control by centralising user accounts
- Enhancing data collection, information such as vehicle count of the day
As a customer, you will be able to recharge your FASTag account online through issuing member banks portal using UPI/ Debit Card/Credit Card/ NEFT/ RTGS /Net Banking. In fact, the cashback scheme is also available to the customers on toll payments using FASTag at National Highways Toll Plazas.
Role as Vehicle Owner
If you are a vehicle owner, you need to follow these things.
Step 1: You have to obtain a NETC tag containing the issuer bank’s signature by contracting with an issuer.
Step 2: You need to choose and remember the linked bank account with the tag id.
FASTag can be purchased from any of the NETC Member Banks. Please note, if adequate balance is not maintained by the customer, the FASTag will get blacklisted at the toll plaza.