What to do next if you've forgotten to pay for your Dartford Crossing

Late payment of the Dartford Crossing toll – what next?

Did you know that up to 300,000 drivers forgot to pay their Dartford Crossing charge in December? This equates to a shocking £21m in fines. Make sure you’re not one of them this month by following the CDG Car’s guide to beating late payment fines at the Dartford Crossing.

What to do next if you've forgotten to pay for your Dartford Crossing

What to do next if you’ve forgotten to pay for your Dartford Crossing

The new payment system for the crossing has removed toll booths and relies on motorists remembering to pay the toll remotely by midnight the following day – or face fines of up to £105 for each crossing. Find out what you can do to beat the Dartford fines right here.

Why do I need to read this?

If you’re driving around the South East there’s a good chance you’ll need to use the Dartford Crossing at some point in the near future – and negotiate its new charging system.

Arriving at the crossing, you’ll expect to be met by barriers where you can pay a toll and be happily on your way. Sadly not. On-the-spot payments have been axed and replaced by a new scheme called Dart Charge.

The new system puts the onus on drivers to logon, or call a payment line, to settle their bill by midnight the following day or face a fine of up to £105.00 for each crossing. Figures show 300,000 drivers failed to do this in one month alone.

How to beat the fine

It's all-change at the Dartford Crossing: <a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:2014_Dartford_Crossing_approach_from_south.jpg" target="_blank">image credit</a>

It’s all-change at the Dartford Crossing: image credit

Motorists using the Dartford Crossing since the system changed have complained about unclear signage and a shortage of information on how to pay their toll. Many drivers have also complained the system is biased towards those with online access.

Payment and dissemination of information does favour those with internet access, but there are easy ways for non-connected drivers to pay up and beat the fines. Here are the main Dartford Crossing payment methods.


1) Set up a pre-pay account:

Set up a pre-pay account: This will need to be done in advance and will require you to pay in at least £10.00 when you register. You can manually top up the account or set it to add funds automatically. This is the cheapest way to pay, with registered cars costing £1.67 per crossing compared with the new price of £2.50 for those who pay in other ways.
Set up a new pre-pay account here
Change an existing Dart Tag account


2) Pay online:

Pay online: Pay for an individual crossing online by heading here before midnight the following day.
Pay here.


3) Pay in advance for a one-off crossing:

Pay in advance for a one-off crossing: If you only use the crossing occasionally, for trips to the airport etc, then paying a minimum of £10.00 into an account is not a good use of your cash. This option lets you pay for pay for individual crossings up to 12 months in advance.
Pay in advance here


4) Over the phone:

Over the phone: Those without internet access will be pleased that you can pay for the charge by phone. You will need to do this by midnight the following day.

However, don’t leave this until the last moment, because we phoned the number only to be informed it was too busy to take our payment.
Pay by phone (if it’s not too busy): 0300 300 0120


5) Payzone retail outlet:

Payzone retail outlet:This is where you can pop into a local store and pay for the charge by cash or other means. Simply use the store locator below to find the outlet that’s closest to you. Use the top drop-down option to select ‘Transport and ticketing’ then ‘Dart Charge’ in the next options list. Then input your postcode to find the nearest payment centre.
Find your nearest Payzone retailer here


6) Pay by post:

Pay by post: If you really don’t like using new technology, then Luddites will feel at home with this err… handy pay-by-post option. You can only pay in advance and must send your cheques to:

Dart Charge Customer Services
PO Box 842
Leeds LS1 9QF


How to make sure you don’t forget to pay the Dartford Crossing toll

Forgotten to pay? Don't panic, just read on

Forgotten to pay? Don’t panic, just read on

Now that you know how to pay, it’s just a case of making sure you remember to do so. Heading on holiday can be both exciting and stressful in equal measure, making it easy to forget banal chores such as paying for your trip over or under the Thames… Here are some suggestions to help ensure you don’t come home to a big fine.


Here’s the big news: Get an extra 14 days to pay: Early statistics show that 15% of drivers neglected to pay the toll on time in the first month alone – meaning out of two million crossings, around 300,000 failed to cough up – racking up potential fines of £21m.

Fortunately, the Highways Agency realises the new system is causing confusion and is allowing drivers more time to pay – extending the midnight deadline to 14 days.

A spokesman said: ‘The first penalty charge notice issued for any vehicle for non-payment of the charge will offer the driver an extra 14 days to pay – and pay for any crossings they have made since.

‘This measured approach strikes the right balance between being clear to drivers they need to pay Dart Charge and giving them every opportunity to do so.’

The additional 14-day period will help most drivers escape fines of up to £210 for a return trip, but please remember, this applies only to the first charge issued to any single vehicle.


Register a Dart Charge account: This will simply take cash from your account for crossings you make – without the need to log on and make individual payments. However, this is best for those who use the crossing on a regular basis, because users have to pay £10.00 to join. This is then used to pay for crossings, but occasional users will have dead money left in the account. See the section above for more details, or join up here.

Set up a new pre-pay account here
Change an existing Dart Tag account


Don’t get scammed: Just like services such as buying road tax and applying for passports, the new Dart Charge payment system – as it is officially known – is likely to be targeted by scammers with copycat websites. Not only will these sites leave you out of pocket for the toll, but they’ll also leave you facing a fine of up to £125.00 for non-payment.

To show how easy this is, a fake site has already been built by digital marketing expert Richard Summers. While his Dartfordcrossingtoll.com site is not asking for money, it’s likely that some won’t be for built with such innocent intentions.

Summers was infuriated by roadside signs sending drivers online to search services such as Google for the payment website – opening up the potential for scammers to take advantage of confusion over the correct website address.

He said: ‘Rather than directing drivers to the official payment website, the signs invite users to use Google. They are practically inviting fraudsters to target people who may not be the most technically savvy to get scammed.’

Don’t pay at any website other than https://www.gov.uk/pay-dartford-crossing-charge


Set a reminder by location on your phone: Have you got an iPhone? There’s a great feature that will let you specify a location for a reminder to be triggered. So, if you’re booking a holiday for example and will need to use the Dartford Crossing as you head to an airport such as Stansted, enter the terminal’s postcode so it’ll remind you to pay as you wait for your flight. You can then do the same for your home address to cover the homeward trip.

The following graphic shows how this smart feature works. Remember to set it when you plan your trip that will include the Dartford Crossing.

graphic

location reminder

1. Open your iPhone’s reminders app – it is standard on the handset
2. Make a new reminder to pay the Dart Charge
3. Hit the ‘i’ button and choose ‘remind me at a location
4. Enter postcode of the tunnel or your destination – where you can pay. Choose ‘when I arrive’
5. The phone will remind you to pay as you arrive at the your destination or crossing
6. Set an identical reminder for your homebound trip – using your home postcode
7. Enjoy a worry-free journey and don’t return to a big fine

 

There are plenty of ready-made apps that do the same thing for Android users too. Try this…

Android
Geobells Location Reminder…
Alert yourself when you reach or pass a certain location.
Get it here


Warn visitors from overseas: With open borders in Europe, many more people will come to visit the UK from overseas – whether on holiday or to see friends and relatives. Many will arrive through the Port of Dover and go on to other parts of the UK by using the Dartford Crossing. This could leave them open to fines because it has been reported that the smartphone-based payment system cannot handle foreign credit cards. This will result in many tourists being hit by charges through no fault of their own.

If this happens to you, make sure you use the telephone system – which will accept foreign cards – to pay the toll. Don’t expect to get away with fines because the car is registered abroad, either, pan-European collection agents will chase you.


Register with DartSave: This is a company set up to prevent you being fined if you forget to pay the Dartford Crossing charge. Signing up will also extend the time you have to pay from midnight the following day to seven days after using the crossing.

Register for free and Dartsave will pay the toll for you, then send an email reminding you to reimburse them within seven days. If this is not done, the firm will send another email with a £5.00 admin charge attached – still much lower than the £70 fine the Government would levy after just one day – even if you don’t get the email until you get back from your holiday.

Remember – like Transport for London and its Congestion Charge, you will not be reminded to pay your toll by the operating authority, which makes this a great service.
Join up here: www.dartsave.co.uk


Pay both ways: It might sound obvious, but don’t forget that payment is due for each crossing you make… both on your outward and return journey.

But has the new system improved journey times?

Yes. Despite the confusion surrounding the new payment system, removing the toll booths has resulted in significantly faster journey times for drivers using the Dartford Crossing.

Highways Agency statistics show reveal average journey times between 7am and 7pm have been cut by more than 9 minutes southbound, and more than 4 minutes northbound when comparing the first two weeks of December and the end of November.

Read our full guide to Dartford Crossing changes here.

 

57 thoughts on “Late payment of the Dartford Crossing toll – what next?

  1. mnl logistics

    hi, i think my drivers have been through the dartford crossing twice in the last two weeks, i want to pay the charge but how do we do this for late payments, before they just used to pay on the spot, but its very easy for them to forget.

    plz advise.

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      You will have to wait for a letter I am afraid. You will get extra time to pay the first payment for each vehicle and the full fine for subsequent trips, I would assume. Joining Dart Save ( see main article) will help prevent a repeat. Thanks.

      Reply
    2. Barry Payne

      So after crossing early on Sat 30/05/15, I went online to see what the charge was. So you have to set up an account to see your crossings and to do that you have to pay £10.00 which I did. No sign of my crossings…. The charge showed on my credit card after 5 days, still nothing on the account. Another 5 days and then the crossings showed and the charge (reduced because on account) shows as -£3.34. Still no sign of my payment…. now 17 days on…
      No response to my complaints put to the website……..

      Reply
  2. gerard healy

    went through dartford tunnell on 19/january. went on line to pay, three of the shops that was advertised online to pay charge did not do it. can you please tell me what i need to do now.

    Reply
    1. David Sadler

      Give them a call on 03003000120. You can pay on the phone. If you haven’t had a penalty letter you will avoid any fine by paying now. They are way behind with the back log of non-payers

      Reply
  3. Unhappy Crosser

    Hello All

    I used the crossing twice in January (on the same day) when I got home I paid my £5 via the Web one off payment. For which I was Debited and received a receipt.
    Today I have just received x2 (count-em) 2 Penalty charge notices for NON-PAYMENT…!
    What a farce I will be forwarding this correspondence to my MP its a disgrace and a total sham …….

    Reply
    1. Jo

      Hi
      We have exactly the same problem. We spoke to an operator on Xmas eve paid ny card had it debited, we received non payment letter which we returned with bank statement. They sent further letter with huge fine saying we gave wrong number plate !!!! We didn’t and we are still waiting for a tribunal verdict. I’m fuming.

      Reply
  4. Dean

    I’ve stupidly forgot about paying for my crossing on Thursday afternoon. I’ve refused at 8am on Saturday morning and paid for 2 crossings. If it’s true about the midnight next day deadline due 2 fines. Is the 14 day rule in place for first offences?
    This is meant to make the journey quicker but I believe it’s another money making scheme. Driving is becoming very unenjoyable in this country now and everywhere you go there is a camera set up to fine you if you forget to pay or miss a sign.

    Reply
  5. maggie

    Hi! I forgot to pay for the crossings on Sunday the 1-st of March. and realised on Wednesday the 4th. Went on internet, paid.. and haven’t received e-mail confirmation, so i paid the £5 again and this time i got the e-mail, but the problem is i dont know if i received the penalty notice as day after i did the crossings i left the country and i wont be back for another 3 weeks at least. i tried to call the number 0300… but it doesnt connect. I would like to find out if i still have to pay the penalty or if the 14 days time to pay for the crossing applies to me( i read that for first penalty charge issued there is 14 days time to pay for the crossings) or does anyone know phone number which will work from abroad or e-mail address so i can contact them. They do not make anything easy this days..:-( Many thanks in advance. M

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi – Providing this was the first time you have forgotten to pay, then you should be okay as the Highways Agency is giving 14 days grace for people to pay the toll. This does apply to the first ‘offence’ only. However, if it’s not your first offence, then they are taking weeks to send out fines, and only once they send this out does the 50% offer start to countdown – so you should be back in the country by then. Hope this helps.

      Reply
  6. Sian

    Hi all,
    I was meant to pay for a return by midnight last night, but literally only just remembered at 8am. Does the 14 day rule still apply for the first time you forget? As I was doing it as a favour for my mum and dad and I don’t fancy the £200 fine… It would be ridiculous to receive the fine for forgetting it by just a few hours!

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi – Yes, you should be okay on the first time you forget. Rememberm, this applies to one crossing only and not a return trip. Hope that helps.

      Reply
  7. Brian

    Paid after December crossing, both ways. Entered wrong registration plate digit so received fine. Sent representation and received confirmation I would not be charged. Received a second fine in Feb. Phoned to pay this, my fault, but told that I had two £70 fines from Dec. This has not been possible to resolve over phone. Service has been utterly disgraceful and I have been told to pay or face an increase in fine.

    Completely unjust. How do I complain at the highest level and how do I get them to understand that they confirmed I would not be fined for the payment in December.

    Disgusted with whole experience.

    Reply
  8. Penny

    This is OBVOUSLY the latest DARTFORD CROSSING SCAM!! 1)the price goes up n up 2) should now b free 3) they turned 600k into 21m in 1 MONTH!!

    Stop paying they can’t afford t Take everyone t court for 2.50

    Reply
  9. j allsop

    I never knew anything about the changes…….travelled to France for Christmas. …..and returned early January using the crossing both ways. It’s now the end of April and I’ve just received two notices for payment and fines……surely this isn’t right…..how can they do this. I take no notice of what happens in London and had no idea these changes have taken place……I keep my eyes on the road not signs saying paying online….Which I don’t recall seeing!!!!

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      We’re sorry to hear that and agree totally. There’s a real need for better communication.

      Reply
  10. Paul

    I used the tunnel on 13th April 2015. I just realised today 29th April that I had not added this particular car to the list of cars I registered online for the dartcharge. I have now included this car today (29th April)and credited the account with £10.00. It is my first violation and I have not received any PCN. What are the chance that I may get a PCN?

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi – It’s likely that as it is your ‘first offence’ you will benefitr from the 14-day grace period that’s given after a letter is sent out. I would expect you to be fine. Please feed back if you do get a letter… but I wouldn’t be too worried if I were you.

      Reply
  11. peter

    i forgot to pay the charge called up 19 days later and was charged the £2.50 for both trips BUT i never never had a receipt or email to confirm payment. the system was playing up and all i have is the guys name

    Reply
  12. r Clifford

    the agency typed in the wrong car number used an o instead of zero which created wrong number question why did the receiving computer not pick it and reject it I ended up with fines for four crossings this fines are one sided I sent copies of payment had one rescinded but they still sent fines for three others .doesnt seem their is a lot of communication between departments problem now is to produce copies of payment as they have the originals.

    Reply
  13. Rachha Gurung

    I made the Dartford Crossing twice on Sunday 3 May 2015, and I didn’t realize until Tuesday 5 May 2015 that I had totally forgotten about the payments I had to make. I made the payment instantly. I do hope that I do not have to pay any penalty. Since, it is so easy to forget, it would be a good idea to have one or two lanes dedicated purely for manual payments for those who have not had the chance to make any payment in advance.

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi – You should be okay if it was your first ‘offence’ as they give 14 days’ grace. This only applies to the first time you forget to pay in each vehicle you drive. I think the manual payment lanes would be very popular – with very long queues, no doubt.

      Reply
  14. p j k

    hi, like some of above we used crossing early January, payed online the day before travel and have just received notices of fines, have sent of copy of invoice to LEEDS of all places, or is that a scam also, what a mess, travel via heathrow next time.

    Reply
  15. Franny

    Hi

    I am currently on holiday, used Dartford Bridge on the 4th and just realised I hadn’t paid! First time I’ve used the bridge since new system so I logged in amd paid £5 in despite it being 2 days late.

    Should I be expecting a fine as I’m back in 2 weeks or will this come under the grace for first offence?

    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hello – You should be fine with 14-day ‘grace’ period. Just as long as it is the first ‘offence’ as you say. So – I would say, sit back, order another cocktail and enjoy your holiday.

      Reply
  16. dirk moons

    hi
    i am Dirk from Belgium
    i never had a credit card or a mobile Phone
    so how can i pay itif there is no till anymore
    do i have to cancel my trip or go around the other side of the m25

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi – It is not ideal for visitors from abroad, but you can go online to find a shop near your destination where you can pay, or use a payphone to call the number. You can also pay in advance by post if you have time. Here are the details you need:

      Find a shop to pay using cash in: http://www.payzone.co.uk/Store-Locator
      Pay in advance by post: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pay-the-dartford-crossing-charge-dart-charge-by-post
      Call from payphone etc: 0300 300 0120

      Hope this helps and that you enjoy your trip (Dartford, aside).

      Reply
    2. fruiterer

      Drivers of foreign registered vehicles need NOT pay. A debt recovery agency can only legally act upon an order given by a UK government body or authority issued under the authority of a UK court and as no UK court has jurisdiction outside of the UK , even less so the authority to issue execution warrants in foreign countries , foreign drivers who fail to pay for whatever reason, can not therefore be compelled to pay any debt. The Highways Agency as far as I am aware , do not have access to information on databases of keepers of vehicles in foreign countries !

      Reply
      1. Andrew Robert Tyrrell

        Hello a little late here, but I live in Spain and I received both the advisory and the fine for a journey I made in June (end of September now) letters are in Spanish. I was not aware of the charge. They are dated 20 days ago. Saying if I don’t pay in 14 days of the letter another £100 will be added. What can I do?

        Reply
  17. su

    I travelled over the bridge one day and then back through the tunnel the next day in March and was totally unaware of this new scheme until someone brought it to my attention a couple of weeks ago!! I had not used the Dartford crossing in over 10 years and so had my money ready for the toll booths but when I came over there were none there and just lots of roadworks so I just thought they had suspended the tolls to avoid congestion or something ??

    I called the agency as soon as I heard about the new system and they confirmed that 2 penalty notices had been sent for the 2 crossings but I have received nothing here ?? They couldn’t confirm the address the notices were sent to and I have still received nothing. If it has been sent to the wrong address what am I supposed to do??

    Can someone also please clarify whether the PNC letters are recorded or signed for and even though the offence was committed months ago do I still get 14 days grace from the time we actually receive a PNC or is it 14 days from the time of the offence ?? Confused.com ??

    Su

    Reply
    1. John

      I am in the same situation although I have just received the PCN nearly 6 weeks after the one and only crossing. Living in the north of the UK, the Dart charge has not been a discussion point or in our news.

      I saw the red C and associated it with the London congestion charge and timings, and because we arrived home at 1am, after a holiday flight into Gatwick, forgot all about investigating the “new” toll.

      Pete, the PCN only mentions paying £35, raising to £70 if I take more than 2 weeks to pay. Do I get the opportunity to pay just the toll charge as this is my first “offence”?

      Reply
  18. Su

    I travelled over the bridge one day and then back through the tunnel the next day in March and was totally unaware of this new scheme until someone brought it to my attention a couple of weeks ago!! I had not used the Dartford crossing in over 10 years and so had my money ready for the toll booths but when I came over there were none there and just lots of roadworks so I just thought they had suspended the tolls to avoid congestion or something ??

    I called the agency as soon as I heard about the new system and they confirmed that 2 penalty notices had been sent for the 2 crossings but I have received nothing here ?? They couldn’t confirm the address the notices were sent to and I have still received nothing. If it has been sent to the wrong address what am I supposed to do??

    Can someone also please clarify whether the PNC letters are recorded or signed for and even though the offence was committed months ago do I still get 14 days grace from the time we actually receive a PNC or is it 14 days from the time of the offence ??

    Reply
    1. fruiterer

      The Law says that Penalty Charge Notices sent by post MUST be RECEIVED by the intended recipient within 28 days of the offence. Note the usage of the word RECEIVED. Attempted delivery of a PCN to any address , correct or incorrect is not the same as being RECEIVED . Citizens Advice Bureau website gives some information regarding t he issuing of PCNs.
      Personally I wouldn’t pay them at all — if they can’t prove that you have received the PCN within the required 28 day period — hard luck on them.

      Reply
  19. David

    I did a round trip to France last Dec, back on Jan. I live far from London so totally unaware that this toll had ever existed. I got my first letter on March with a fine for the Jan crossing, which I paid immediately and thanks to first ofence no extra cost. They never mentioned there was a second fine for the Dec crossing! This just arrived on May and of course now I have to pay the fine in full.

    Let’s sum this up: (1) impossible to know a priori that you have to pay; (2) no notice at home until almost half a year later, giving you time to do many more “illegal” crossings without even realizing; (3) hey they’re nice guys they give you a discount on the first fine, you just need to pay in full all the others. This is a government-sponsored scam. Unbelievable.

    Reply
  20. Stuart M

    I prepaid £6.00 cash at a Payzone shop near Doncaster on 28/Jan/2015, to make two crossings, 1st one southbound 9/2/15 . The return crossing 12/2/15 northbound. Then on April 10th I received a PCN saying I had not paid for the northbound crossing. I had by then ,thrown away the receipt, not unreasonable I thought,! . I explained this in my representation, but that was rejected, saying there was no record of any payment for my vehicle, so I asked the Payzone shop to get me a copy of the record of payment, this they did ,which allowed me to appeal to the online tribunal. It took only two days for the tribunal to find in my favour. There is obviously some serious glitches in their system, including investigation personnel not up to the job. They found it easier to penalise me than to check with their recommended Payzone system.

    Reply
  21. Dj Clubuks

    so after using this revenue making bridge for years which i heard was made a toll until such a time it had paid for itself which was paid for years ago but after realising just how much money they can make from us drivers who have already paid road tax to allow us on any rd in britain they decided to turn it into a buisness with us being the victims of this scam , ive ways very reluctantly and begrudgingly paid , but since thevve hidden behind the misconception and lie that this was changed to help us drivers when infact its very clear this has inconvienienced most of us and is just another way of getting more out of us , this is my predicament , i dont have any bank accounts , bank cards and therefore no way of paying these unfair tolls apart from in cash at the tolls themselves , so ive been over the bridge about 7 times recently , each time having the cash to pay like ive always done but are not allowed to , i then come back throughvthe tunnel where you still have to stop at the toll to be let through where i was still i wouldnt say willing but ready to pay with the cash i had on me but didnt have the option , so i just continue on my journey , so now ive just received 700 pound in fines come through my door which im sure everyone will agree is very fair and has made tge lives of us drivers really easier regarding this legal robbery of a bridge , im gonna look into the human rights act to challange the fairness of this ect as i know brittish law will not help in any way as these laws are made by these polititions who treat us drivers like criminals and are always looking of new ways to rob us of more money to fund the likes of cyclists who pay nothing to hog our roads and use our money to accomadate more facilities for these cyclists , but in the meantime what advice could u give until such a time i can try and prove with european law that this scam is inreasonable and not in line with the eu guidelines of fairness , which is why ive always supported us staying in the eu , because its our goverment who needs keepingbin check to avoid the unfair treatment of us victims of their bullying and pushing around

    Reply
  22. Dj Clubuks

    and i mean when i refuse to pay the fine and only the charges for crossing the bridge which is all thats owed cause i cant say all they deserve because they dont , it will emphasise just how much this change is for the conveinience of us drivers when i get my car taken off me to feed these parasites , ,, i mean who could say thats unfair afterall and helps us right out

    Reply
  23. Jenny

    Never driven in London before and was petrified!! I had to follow a diversion that took me through here as the Blackwall Tunnel was closed due to a fire. I don’t remember seeing any signage for how and what to pay but do remember the barriers being up so presumed that I didn’t have to pay. Just received a penalty notice! London should have a moat around it as it is literally it’s own country with it’s own set of rules that nobody outside of it understands! What with tunnel charges, congestion charges and every other bloody charge it’s no wonder that the place has so much money while the rest of the country goes without! I hated the place before but I hate it even more now! I have no idea what anyone sees in the place or why they are so desperate to live there! What a complete waste of space and land!
    Rant over…….back to good old tractor and wellies land where nobody gets charged to drive on the roads that we all pay our car tax for!

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hi Jenny, As rants go that was very entertaining and well put! I hope that it helped and I am sure that many agree with you… me included. Enjoy the (toll-free) countryside.

      Reply
      1. Jenny

        Yups the only congestion we get is being stuck behind a tractor………don’t have to pay for the privilege either and the view is a damn sight more beautiful ??

        Reply
  24. dave

    I went over the bridge on Saturday. Arrived back in Kent that night. Totally forgot to go on line and pay the toll. Remembering on the Monday I assumed I had 7 days to pay so went on line to pay. As I looked I saw you must pay within 24 hours. I am now expecting a fine. When will this be sent out as I read if you pay within 14 days you only have to pay £35? As I read they have a “back log” I expect they will use this as an excuse to charge me the full amount. Is there not a contact number. I was willing to phone up hold my hands up and pay if there was such a number.

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      If you pay now – the standard fee – you might be lucky as the first crossing will be under the 14-day grace period and the second may be charged or lost in the system. It really does seem that hit and miss.

      Reply
  25. Jay

    Hi, I used the crossing on 30/05/15 and completely forgot to pay the toll charge until earlier today – 02/06/15. I was wondering if they’re still granting 14 days grace for first time offenders – I’ve crossed before and paid on time but it slipped my mind on this occasion. I’ve now paid the toll charge but am worried as I head off for holiday on 05/06 for 2 weeks and don’t want to be receiving a PCN on my return!

    Any feedback gratefully received.

    Reply
    1. Pete Barden Post author

      Hello – Yes, you should be okay for the first crossing, but any subsequent ones could face the full fine. Thanks

      Reply
  26. Lesley Pollard

    I used the Dartford toll to and from Kent on 2 April. I sent a cheque for £5 to Dart Charge on the same day. I have just received a Penalty Notice for non-payment. I tried to appeal by sending a copy of my cheque stub but my appeal was refused, apparently this was not sufficient evidence of payment! It was obvious that my cheque was lost in the post, but no concession was made for this error and I still have to pay the penalty. I think it is so unfair that due to the mishandling of the Post Office my cheque did not arrive and I still have to come up with the penalty.

    Reply
  27. David

    If i go to “one off payment”, type in my registration number , and the website does not recognise it , does that mean I’m exempt , or just that I need to register . I assume they have access to the dvla database.

    Reply
  28. Paul

    I use the crossing a few times a year, and my friend told me about the changes the day I was due to make two crossings, so £10 isn’t too much of an issue for the Government to keep hold of my money, so, in April I set up an account online. I’m quite savvy when comes to using online applications and systems, but this took over 2 hours to set up including being on the phone to customer services for over an hour! DART customer services couldn’t find my credit but my account was set up. they will look into where my £10 has gone but could take up to 2 weeks.
    Well I made my two crossings and two weeks later I called DART customer services, after another hour they informed me the person I had called earlier had not put in a claims form but they would do it but again would take two weeks.
    Two weeks later…. had enough so I emailed Dart….. no response so after another week I called Laura, a very nice girl who sounded like she actually had a brain cell, unlike her colleague. Laura was going to escalate my query to her line manager and this would be sorted in no time. oh this call took another hour and I haven’t done anything wrong here.
    weeks later totally fed up with chasing Dart to credit my account with my £10, I decide to not bother and wait for the penalty notice.
    Today I receive a notice saying my account is in arrears and if I don’t credit my account they will issue a penalty notice. These people have serious issues with their systems and procedures, good job I don’t run my company like this!

    Reply
  29. g w chisholm

    what a con after picking up a secondhand ptcruiser from bury STedmonds driving back to cornwall wheir i live got lost on m25 ringroad i do not know of charge for dartford crossing have had fine letter 15/6/15 for using dart crossing on 25/4/15 does anyone know how to get out of this cheers george

    Reply
  30. Jeff Tatum

    Anyone else find the call centre where you try to make payments rude, unhelpful and condescending?
    Its bad enough this new pay online scheme is not widely known about and millions are getting fines due to the poor signage and confusion but to rub salt in the wounds and have the worst customer service ever baggers belief.

    They took up 20 minutes of my time so I’m in the process of sending them a bill for £40….

    Reply
  31. Gina

    Help, i received a penalty charge notice 23rd June for a trip back in Dec 2014? not a trip i normally do and totally unaware of any changes, is the time line of 6-months legal?
    i would appreciate any advice as soon as possible.

    Reply
  32. David

    Agree 100% with the comments made. I travelled over the crossing going on holiday and back. Signage not clear and I had no idea about this charge as I rarely travel to the south of the country. They sent a penalty notice to my lease car company and I only found out about it when the lease company sent me a £20 admin bill 6 weeks after I crossed. They also told dart charge my contact info and I’ve heard nothing from Dart Crossing other than they told me (when I rang) that I missed the deadline of 14 days to pay £2.50. I owe them £105. I have never actually received the bill from them.
    Call centre is damn rude and hung up on me when I asked to speak to a supervisor, wouldn’t log my complaint and refused to log the call. Overall absolutely disgusting service from a government department. I won’t be paying the penalty and looking forward to my day in court with them

    Reply
  33. OllieW

    I have been late once and so was let off a fine. However I crossed twice in one day and forgot to pay by midnight the next day – but only by two and a half hours – i.e. I paid at 2.30am the day after. Is the fine system absolute – i.e. if you are 1 minute over the deadline you will still be fined, or is there wiggle room for a few hours or a day or so etc?

    Reply
    1. OllieW

      Just so you know, the payment was linked up – I contacted them via their Facebook page and they seemed very helpful. Therefore there does seem to be a period after midnight in which you can pay.

      Reply
  34. Howard

    I went over the crossing and back on 23rd July 2015. I totally forgot about this and received a Penalty yesterday 25th August dated 24th August 2015 (Issue Date).

    Am I write to stating that they must issue the penalty within 28 days of the contravention? If so can you refer me to the regulations.

    Reply
  35. Boonruk

    All the Dart signs use the Red C Congestion Charge symbol. I thought they were about Congestion Charge. I am registered for auto pay of congestion charge.
    I used the crossing on a return journey on 27 May and have had two penalty charge notices dated 2 October. Unbelievable. Confused. I never used the crossing before or since.
    I try to do the right thing but this parochial tax is simply trickery. Who decided to use the same symbol as the Congestion Charge? The Joker?

    Reply

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