Tips To Help Businesses Avoid Congestion Charge In Commercial Vehicles

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Congestion Charges

Do your company vehicles regularly drive within charging zones like London? Do you regularly receive congestion charges for your commercial vehicles? We understand how frustrating this can be, especially with a large fleet out on the road. We have therefore put together some tips on how to avoid congestion charges, so you can spend the company’s money on more profitable things.

What is a congestion charge?

The congestion charge was put in place in order to make a difference to the traffic flow in and out of London, as well as to have a positive impact on the air and noise pollution. 

The registration plate of the vehicle that is driving in the congestion zone, is picked up by Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) and then charged to the company for the individual vehicle. 

The congestion charge costs £11.50 a day, when driving in the charging zone between the hours of 7am and 6pm,Monday to Friday. 

The amount of congestion charges can soon add up when you have a large fleet out on the roads at the same time. So how can you help your business to avoid these unwanted costs? 

How do I avoid the congestion charge?

1. Download an app

There are multiple mobile apps on the market that can help you to avoid congestion charges. For example: Waze. This app shows you the traffic in a specific area and helps to pick a different route. Alternatively, if your commercial vehicles have a vehicle tracking system implemented, you can use the live map to see if your company vehicles are heading near a congestion charge point, and divert the driver to a different route. 

2. Check routes before you set off 

Plan your route before you leave and use the Transport for London website, to see if there is a congestion charge on your route. 

3. Visit the city at a certain time

Be aware of the timings that involve a congestion charge, and plan your visit around this. 

4. Keep your eyes on the road

The congestion charge areas are clearly signposted, so keep your eyes peeled and take a different route if possible. 

5. Park outside the zone

If you are able to park your vehicle outside the zone and get an underground tube into the city, this could save you some money and inconvenience.

6. Travel together

If you have multiple colleagues that need to travel into the city at the same time, plan beforehand and ensure that they travel together in order to save the multiple fees that could be incurred. 

7. Pay your congestion charge

You can pay the charge online, by auto pay or phone, but make sure that you do pay. If you forget to pay, there will be a fine of £130 payable. 

DayTimeCongestion Charge Fee
Monday - Friday07.00 - 18.00£11.50
Monday - FridayAfter 18.00 and before 07.00Free
Saturday - SundayAll dayFree
Bank HolidaysAll dayFree
Christmas Day - New Year's DayAll dayFree