Cash or credit? It’s a choice customers of the Mackinac Bridge can make now, opting to use a credit card to pay their toll right at the booth.
The Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) began testing acceptance of credit cards in the lanes beginning on Tuesday, May 23. Though toll staff did encounter some brief outages with the system, more than 2,200 transactions were processed through the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
“We’ve been testing the new system, and have reached the point we’re comfortable that it is operating reliably and securely,” said MBA Executive Secretary Bob Sweeney. “We’re happy this new feature is available for our customers, and we’re sure they’ll appreciate the additional convenience and option is offers.”
Credit card use at the toll booths is a feature included as part of a toll software upgrade package at the Mackinac Bridge rolled out in 2015. In the past, customers without cash or a toll card would need to park their vehicle and pay their toll in the MBA office in St. Ignace.
The credit card system includes financial security checks that require a few more seconds per transaction for verification, compared to the current average of 12 seconds per transaction. Depending on traffic volumes, credit card use may be restricted to designated lanes at times to prevent traffic backups.