Texas Toll Roads


One thing I’ve learned very quickly about since moving to Dallas has been about toll roads. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’ve never heard of a toll road. I can put two and two together and figure out that it means you have to pay for using it. In California, I paid toll every workday to cross the bridge. At $4.00 a pop, it was an expense. However, toll roads, are actually few and far between. The only ones that I ever saw were in Southern California.

Anyway, I’m not a huge fan of toll roads. In fact, they kind of ignite a mini anxiety attack. I know that it would probably be pretty difficult to just blindly get on a toll road, but what it confusing to me is when there are only PORTIONS of the road that have a toll.

Last week, I ventured to Ikea to look for a laptop table. I saw one in the freshly issued catalog and wanted to go check it out. We had been to Ikea last year and I knew that involved some clever maneuvers to get there without the toll road. Of course, Cent had been driving. I had been the passenger. I figured we’d get there. But I wasn’t paying that much attention, I wasn’t driving.

I was following the GPS dictate directions. I had even clicked the option to “Avoid Toll Roads”. I think I was about halfway there when I remembered that when we went last year we ended up taking the service road of this tolled highway. I don’t get it, but I took the surface road. Well I arrived at Ikea, toll free.

Getting back is a different story. I figured it would just be taking the same service road back and then get on the free part of the highway. Well, not so. I found myself trying to trick the GPS to recalculate the route so that it would stop insisting that I go on the toll road, which I had told it to specifically avoid! I ended up taking the scenic route¬† through two other cities. It wasn’t terrible, it just took me about double the time. But I guess now I know how to get there…kind of.

Lesson learned: only go to Ikea and that side of town with Cent, until really familiar with the area.

Also, perhaps I should look into getting a toll tag and be able to drive without toll-anxiety.

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