DC/Virginia: Usage drops, but more money collected in 1st month of Dulles Toll Road rate hike

Many of Virginia’s Dulles Toll Road users, particularly those paying with cash, appear to have noticed the toll increase that took effect Jan. 1.

The number of toll transactions dropped 7.5 percent this January compared to last. That is actually a somewhat smaller drop than the road’s owner, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, had forecast when tolls rose from $2.50 to $3.25 at the mainline plaza and $1 to $1.50 at ramps.

Still, the first toll increase since 2014 meant that even with fewer toll transactions, toll revenue rose 25.6 percent to $15.3 million for the month of January. That is roughly in line with the authority’s forecasts.

In a signal, toll payers using cash were more likely to change behavior based on the toll increase, the percentage of revenue collected through E-ZPass payments rose to 92 percent in January.