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Tolls on German Autobahns

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Looks like the planned tolls from October 2020 on German Autobahns are going to have to be dropped https://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/soziales/deutsche-pkw-maut-verstoesst-gegen-europaeisches-recht-a-1272944.html (cant find an English report at the moment). Basically they have been ruled illegal by the EU court in Luxembourg. The Austrian government took a case claiming discrimination against non German residents (which I thought was a bit rich seeing as Austria has the vignette system, especially as they got rid of the "Maut frei" section at Kufstein!) and won.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Interesting, they must have been charging non residents a different rate than residents to make it illegal. Vignettes and tolls around Europe should be the same regardless of nationality or place of residence. They'll fiddle with it to make it legal easily enough, reduce German road tax etc and then charge everyone the same or something similar.

English Link:

https://www.dw.com/en/eu-court-rules-against-autobahn-tolls/a-49243318
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well there isn't currently a toll, so they haven't been charging different rates.
The fiddle is what they declared illegal... ie giving German resident drivers a discount on the car tax.

There is a toll for trucks, paid by distance, with the same price for all (and it's linked with Austrian toll system too). There is the environmental sticker too, that's also the same price for all.
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@munich_irish, tbh it's been clear from day one that the proposed scheme was in conflict the the rules. Just strikes me as typical CSU pig headedness that they tried to get it through anyway.
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Interesting that non German residents were perceived to being prejudiced against. Isnt it the same in the UK, that UK residents have to have road tax to drive on our roads, but non UK cars can drive on them free of charge and as freely as they wish.
I wonder what would happen if a UK resident took the case to the EU government over discrimination using this judgement as precedence?
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Sounds like the same outcome as when they tried it in 2016:

https://www.euractiv.com/section/transport/news/eu-takes-germany-to-court-over-planned-road-toll/
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@Steilhang, completely agree, it has never made sense. It was stupid populist nonsense by the CSU which has now come back to haunt them.

For those not up in the details of German politics, the proposal was originally to charge non German (in fact non Bavarian) residents for using the autobahns (I suspect that the decision by the Tirol to charge for the use of the section of the Inntal autobahn between the border and Kufstein South had something to do with it). That was clearly not going to run as it was illegal. The proposal was reworked so that all motorists would pay for a vignette, similar to Austria, Czech republic etc but that German residents would get a tax refund similar to the cost of an annual vignette. That, somewhat surprisingly, has been now been ruled illegal too. There was also the issue that Angela Merkel made a commitment in 2013 that no German taxpayer would pay to use the roads.

I suspect in the longer term some sort of road charging will come in but as part of a much wider package of environmental reforms, the days of no speed limits on the autobahns are probably coming to an end too.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Quote:

hat UK residents have to have road tax to drive on our roads,


No such thing as Road Tax, but they do have to have VED

Apart from toll roads, do you pay to drive on other roads in other countries?
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Since when have you had to pay to drive down to Kufstein Sud? What’s the fine if you get caught without the permit?
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@andybomb1, couple of years now. Will cost you €120.
A friend whose husband was in hospital in Kufstein drove over the border repeatedly over the course of a couple of weeks... ended up getting a bill for €1000. Seems they have cameras in place Shocked
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I guess I’ve got lucky but I tend to arrive late at night. SkiWelt used to advertise that you didn’t need to pay.

Can you buy the ticket online yet? The stopping annoys me more than paying.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@andybomb1, yup, get it here: https://shop.asfinag.at/en/

Note that you must purchase 18 days in advance, because Austria rolling eyes
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
been able to buy online for a while
but you need to buy 14 days or so in advance, which is of no use if you fly to MUC and get a rental car
stopping is no issue for me, since it's about 4 hours or so from the office to the first services after the munich ring, so I want a pit stop anyway

edit: or 18 days

it's not really "because Austria", but because of laws allowing you 14 day right to cancellation for pretty much anything anywhere in EU. so it doesn't become valid until after the cancellation period, else you could buy one, use it then cancel it for a refund. You can buy and cancel any time in the 14? days stipulated by conusmer law if for example you have to cancel holiday
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
edit to the edit:

although tbf, since there's so much ANPR with the Toll Collect in Germany and Go thing in Austria, that they could do the same as UK Dartford toll, and give you 24 hours (or however long) to cough up after driving in to a toll zone
that way there's no consumer laws to worry about, and they can charge evaders more
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@andy, yeah, I get that, but I’ve bought hundreds of things online and this is the only one (afaik, there may be others, and I’ll guarantee they’re in Austria too) that isn’t immediately valid. Insurance companies and other payments you make online seem to get around it somehow, but with the vignette it’s always “I’ll buy that online coz it’s more convenient” and then I have to take 2 trips down to the garage to get 2x 10 day vignettes to cover the gap because they don’t even issue an 18 day one to solve the problem a bit more conveniently Confused Usually try and manage with one, but I live 5min from the autobahn, so use it quite a lot.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Thanks guys. At least I know I have to stop now or come off at the first junction.

I did have a notion of driving over early season and leaving my own car near Munich airport as I barely use it in the UK so it might be useful if I ever do that.
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I've been saying for years that ANY non UK vehicle entering the UK should be subject purchase a Vignette to use UK motorways. Just as everyone has to purchase a Swiss or Austrian one. As UK vehicle owners already pay to use the roads, ie road tax or VED UK motorist need not pay again. This would raise millions in revenue at next to no cost.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Its been a few years now. You can avoid it by coming off at the last junction before the border, Kiefersfelden, and driving through Kufstein. Do note there is a part time set of traffic lights between 08:00 and 16:00 on a Saturday just before Kufstein which is designed to limit the traffic passing through the town.

If you buy online you can avoid the delay simply by ticking the "business" box (apparently businesses dont have the same rights to claim a refund as private individuals) however it really is very quick to stop to buy one at the services at the border not sure it is really worth the messing about online.
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@Old Man Of Lech, this in fact is the primary motivation for the Germans failed attempt at introducing a road toll. At various periodic intervals half of Europe piles onto the German Autobahns heading in the direction of Italy, Croatia, Greece. The other half of Europe piles onto the German Autobahns in the direction of UK, Holland, Sweden etc. It does get a bit crowded at times, and the Germans, in contrast to just about everyone else, don't charge a penny for it, but do have to use taxpayer money to keep the Autobahns in shape. I never really understood why they don't just do what the Austrians do and introduce a Vignette, instead of introducing some wildly complex system that tries to extract money from foreigners but not from Germans.
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Old Man Of Lech wrote:
I've been saying for years that ANY non UK vehicle entering the UK should be subject purchase a Vignette to use UK motorways. Just as everyone has to purchase a Swiss or Austrian one. As UK vehicle owners already pay to use the roads, ie road tax or VED UK motorist need not pay again. This would raise millions in revenue at next to no cost.

It's already the case for trucks, and has been for several years, anything over 12t. UK VED was reduced at the same time for UK registered trucks, for anything over 3.5t. Our 10t, 7 litre turbo, 240HP lorry is the cheapest vehicle I have to buy VED for at £200,, the 25tonner is £250, (apart from my 1973 Hillman Imp, which is zero Laughing ). Oh and we tow a 3.5t trailer with the small truck too. It's not a vignette as such, it's called the HGV Levy and is calculated on the weight and Euro (emissions) class of the vehicle. For one of the Polish 44t Artics that you see everywhere it is £18 a day if it is euro 6 (lowest emissions).


Last edited by Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do. on Wed 19-06-19 8:14; edited 1 time in total
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@Steilhang, Exactly. Much harder for Germany with very porous borders. Absolute doddle for the UK as an Island. Do exactly what the Swiss do. Have a couple of officers at every point of entry checking the windscreens of non UK cars and and issuing there & then.
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There were a lot of people who live on one side of the Austrian / German border and whose jobs are on the other side, the ones living in Austria kicked up a fuss over the issue due to the unfairness of it.
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