How much is the M6 toll road?

February 06, 2023 by

Want to know all the details about the M6 toll? You can find them here.

Unlike the French Autoroute system, almost all of the UK’s 2,300 miles of motorway are free at point of use, paid for out of general taxation.

We say ‘almost’, as there is one exception: the M6 toll. This is a 27-mile-long bypass that circumvents Birmingham and Wolverhampton, and saves drivers from encountering the traffic they would likely come across on the non-toll section of the M6. Unlike the rest of the motorway network, which is operated by publicly owned National Highways, the M6 toll is privately owned by Midland Expressway Ltd.

Here, we’ll explain how much the M6 toll costs, amongst other details.

Toll charges on the M6

How much you will pay to use the M6 toll depends on the time of day and week, what type of vehicle you’re driving, and where you come onto the road. We’ll split these charges down by these criteria.

Mainline charges

If you’re driving along the entire length of the M6 Toll, you will be charged ‘mainline’ prices, which are as follows:

Weekdays, 7am-7pm
Motorbike: £4
Car: £8.20
Car + trailer: £12.10
Van/motorhome: £14.30
HGV: £14.90

Weekdays, off-peak (5am-7am; 7pm-11pm)
Motorbike: £3.90
Car: £8.20
Car+trailer: £12.10
Van/motorhome: £14.30
HGV: £14.90

Weekdays, night (11pm-5am)
Motorbike: £3.60
Car: £7
Car+trailer: £11.10
Van/motorhome: £13
HGV: £13.50

Weekend, day (5am-11pm)
Motorbike: £4
Car: £8.20
Car+trailer: £11.90
Van/motorhome: £13.60
HGV: £14.40

Weekend, night (11pm-5am)
Motorbike: £3.60
Car: £7
Car+trailer: £11.10
Van/motorhome: £13
HGV: £13.50

Junction charges

As if that weren’t complicated enough, there’s another charging paradigm if you only use part of the M6 toll, coming off after it starts, or leaving before it ends. Do this and you will pay ‘junction’ rather than ‘mainline’ rates.

Junction charges are as follows:

Weekdays, 7am-7pm
Motorbike: £3
Car: £5.80
Car + trailer: £8.70
Van/motorhome: £12.30
HGV: £13.20

Weekdays, off-peak (5am-7am; 7pm-11pm)
Motorbike: £2.90
Car: £5.80
Car+trailer: £8.70
Van/motorhome: £12.30
HGV: £13.20

Weekdays, night (11pm-5am)
Motorbike: £2.60
Car: £5.50
Car+trailer: £8.40
Van/motorhome: £11.20
HGV: £11.80

Weekend, day (5am-11pm)
Motorbike: £3
Car: £5.80
Car+trailer: £8.70
Van/motorhome: £11.60
HGV: £13.10

Weekend, night (11pm-5am)
Motorbike: £2.60
Car: £5.50
Car+trailer: £8.40
Van/motorhome: £11.20
HGV: £11.80

Get the right car insurance for you with Go.Compare

How do I pay the M6 toll?

While working out what you need to pay can be complex, actually paying for the M6 toll is rather straightforward.

All major credit and debit cards are accepted (including Amex) while some fuel cards can also be used, assuming your company has configured them to pay for tolls. Contactless payment is also accepted, though smartphone payment systems like Apple and Android Pay are not – though this may change in the futures. Cash is not accepted, either.

To pay, head up to a toll booth and use your debit, credit, fuel or contactless card.

Regular users of the M6 toll may wish to set up a ‘TAG’ account, which sees a small electronic box placed in your vehicle, and automatically charges you the correct amount for using the road (though you have to keep your account in credit for the system to work). TAG account holders get a 5% discount on every journey and can drive through dedicated TAG lanes, which will automatically raise their barrier arms and show a green traffic light upon detecting the TAG.

Are there any exemptions to the M6 toll?

Yes. Drivers with disabilities can apply for a ‘mobility exemption’, which sees the M6 toll free to use – although there is an annual £7 administration charge. The exemption is issued to an individual vehicle rather than a person, so you cannot use it if you are driving someone else’s car.

To qualify, you will need to provide evidence of your disability, for example by showing your vehicle’s V5C logbook has the road-tax classification ‘disabled’, or showing evidence you receive certain disability-related benefits.

Local residents living in specific postcodes, meanwhile, can apply for discounted use of the M6 toll, but only if they drive cars, vans and motorhomes; no other class of vehicle can be given this discount. The discount allows you to block-buy six passes for a car for £29 (equal to £4.83 per trip), or six for a van/motorhome for £49 (£8.17 per trip), using these passes at any time of day or the week.

What are the penalties for not paying the toll?

If you don’t have a method of payment with you when you use the M6 toll, some brief details will be taken from you at the booth, and you then have six days to pay the charge. Fail to do this and you will receive a £70 penalty, with a ‘payment recovery process’ being started. This will see the penalty passed to a debt-recovery agency, potentially bringing further charges in addition to the penalty and the original toll charge, together with the possibility of court action.

Is it worth using the M6 toll?

The M6 toll is a road of convenience, saving an average of 25 minutes per journey compared to using un-tolled roads in the area.

Whether you consider this worthwhile will depend on your personal circumstances, but given how heavy traffic can get on other roads around Birmingham, it can be a good option.

Change cars online with carwow

Looking for an easy way to change your car? Then carwow is the place to go. You can sell your old car for a great price, and get the best deals on a new one. All through our network of trusted dealers and all from the comfort of your home. Tap the button below to get started today.