Subject: Re: Tolls and driving in Italy

Italian toll roads (autostrade) are indentified by the letter A and one number (A1 is the Milan-Napoli motorway); all signs have a green background, instead of dark blue like in other European countries. You collect your ticket at the entrance from a slot (sometimes you need to press a big red button) and you pay at the exit. Most toll stations are manned and there you cay pay either cash or by credit card. A few automated stations have machines accepting cards, notes or coins; you get the change back but use small denomination notes if possible as the machine returns coins only. The exit lanes marked with blue lines and "Viacard" signs are for cards (Viacard is a prepaid card) only. Stay well clear of the yellow-marked lanes with "Telepass" signs, as they are used by cars with a remote toll charging device and people drive through them without stopping, often at high speed. There's no way to go through it with a regular ticket and you'd end up stopping everybody behind you with a lot of angry horning and bad words!

A final notice to all European toll road users: the 200 and 500 euro notes aren't usually accepted at toll booths, and I won't try with a 100 euro note either. My suggestion is to use credit cards anyway and keep the cash for other needs.

Bye Paolo Trieste, Italy