Contact Us

Paying Tolls With Pennies Allowed, But Frowned Upon [AUDIO/VIDEO]

Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media

If you’ve ever tried to pay your toll on the Turnpike or the Parkway with pennies, you might have a problem. Some toll takers refuse to accept them, and occasionally they’ll become downright nasty. One member of the New Jersey 101.5 News team- when she attempted to pay a portion of the toll with pennies – had them thrown back at her!

Fortunately the coins landed harmlessly on the ground.

New Jersey Turnpike Authority spokesman Tom Feeney says “we ask people not to use them as a courtesy to the drivers in line behind them, but the official policy is they are legal tender and they are accepted at all the cash lanes…we’ve had cases in the past where we have collectors who didn’t want pennies – refused to take them – and were disciplined for it – there’s a bulletin instructing them that pennies are accepted…but sometimes if you’re stuck, and that’s all you have in the car, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be accepting that.”

It might not seem like a big deal to accept pennies that are bunched together in a coin wrap, but Feeney points out “the only way to find out if there are 50 pennies in each of those rolls is to crack em open and count em – it’s not like we have a scale in there or anything to judge whether it’s a full roll without actually doing the counting.”

As for those “No Pennies Please” signs on the toll roads, Feeney says “I think that’s a fairly old sign, but that’s a vestige of a time when they were trying to discourage penny use, but there’s never a time when you were not able to use them…so please don’t use pennies- I think that would sum up our position – obviously if you have to you have to, but it slows things down.”

So what happens if a toll taker refuses to take pennies?

He says “if a driver is offended by that – they should call and make a complaint – note what lane they’re in and call the Turnpike Authority headquarters…that toll collector will be instructed that he or she has to accept pennies- and an uncooperative toll taker would face progressive disciplinary action, but frankly I’m not sure what it is -whatever is under their contract- and I’m sure it would start with telling them instructing them that they have to take pennies – I’m not sure it’s ever gotten much past that -usually when you tell someone they’re incorrect and they have to take pennies, then they start taking pennies, but for it to go beyond that I think it would have to be someone who was a chronic offender – I’m not sure that’s ever happened.”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

More from WOBM AM

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your points and personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account with your Facebook account, just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing profile and VIP program points. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://wobmam.com using your Facebook account.

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

Register on WOBM-AM 1160 & 1310 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a Member? Sign Up Here

Register on WOBM-AM 1160 & 1310 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!