Salik Dubai explains free working hours and how to lose account balance

Aiming to improve transportation efficiency and reduce traffic congestion, Dubai installed Salik toll gates in 2007. These toll gates are strategically positioned at key intersections in Dubai and collect tolls from cars that pass through them.

In January, the Road and Transport Authority (RTA) of Dubai announced the introduction of two additional toll gates, slated to be operational by November of the same year. This expansion will bring the total number of Salik gates in Dubai from eight to ten, with existing gates located in Al Barsha, Al Garhoud Bridge, Al Maktoum Bridge, Al Mamzar South, Al Mamzar North, Al Safa, Airport Tunnel, and Jebel Ali.

Each passage through a Salik toll gate triggers the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to scan the Salik tags installed on vehicles, resulting in a deduction of Dh4 from the motorist's preloaded toll account. Motorists have the convenience of replenishing their Salik card accounts online or through participating retail outlets. However, an insufficient balance in the account may lead to penalties or restrictions on vehicle usage.

The cost of a Salik tag is Dh100, inclusive of Dh50 credited upon activation. An additional Dh20 charge applies for online purchases.

There are "free hours" at some toll gates when cars are not charged to use them. Take the Al Maktoum Bridge as an example; on Sundays and between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., the toll is waived. Commuters that use both the North and South gates of Al Mamzar within one hour of each other in the same direction only pay once.

Unlike Abu Dhabi's Darb road toll system, Dubai's Salik gates operate round-the-clock. Salik accounts have a non-refundable and non-transferable balance, which remains valid for up to five years. Failure to maintain sufficient credit in the account incurs fines, with penalties escalating for repeated violations or failure to obtain a Salik tag within the stipulated timeframe.

Salik toll gates serve as an integral part of Dubai's traffic management infrastructure, promoting smoother traffic flow while enforcing compliance with toll regulations through a systematic approach to charges and penalties.

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