Polish Highways to be Toll-Free for Personal Vehicles

As of this summer, certain sections of the country’s highways owned by the state will no longer have toll charges for personal vehicle drivers. The decision to make these highways toll-free for personal cars comes ahead of the parliamentary elections scheduled in six months. State Secretary for Regional Development, Marcin Horala, made this announcement on TVN24, highlighting the government’s efforts to improve transportation accessibility.

Poland’s extensive highway network currently stretches over 1,712 kilometers. Out of this, the state owns 1,244 kilometers, including 241 kilometers of toll sections. Private entrepreneurs, on the other hand, own or lease 468 kilometers of highways, with 451 kilometers being subject to toll charges. While tolls on state-owned sections will be eliminated, discussions will continue with private operators to reach agreements on fee abolition and potential reimbursements.

Minister of Development and Technology, Waldemar Buda, expressed the government’s intention to negotiate with private operators to find a mutually beneficial resolution. However, he also emphasized that if the operators’ financial demands prove unreasonable or oppose toll abolition, the government has the authority to expropriate their assets in the public interest, with compensation being determined by the courts.

Special sections expected to become toll-free from summer onwards include the A4 highway between Wrocław and Gliwice and the A2 highway between Konin and Stryków. These highways, which currently require toll payments through a toll system or mobile application, will soon offer unrestricted access to personal vehicle drivers, facilitating more accessible and convenient travel across Poland.

This decision to make Polish highways toll-free for personal cars starkly contrasts with recent developments in neighboring countries. In the Czech Republic, the government under Prime Minister Petr Fiala’s leadership has recently decided to increase highway tolls, with the annual highway vignette set to rise by 800 CZK to a total of 2,300 CZK starting from March next year. As such, Polish drivers can celebrate the cost-saving advantage of toll-free highways while their counterparts in the Czech Republic face higher transportation expenses.