UPDATE: This article was updated with information about the start date of the new time-varying toll system being postponed to December 17, 2023.

The city’s Transport Department announced that it will begin a new peak-hour toll system on all three of the city’s Victoria Harbour tunnel crossings from December 17. Under the new system, called the time-varying tolls, private cars and motorcycle users will have to pay differing tolls based on when they use these tunnels. The new system was supposed to begin on December 10, but has been postponed by a week to “allow sufficient time for carrying out extensive publicity work,” according to media reports.

All the crossings will have two peak-hour slots from Monday to Saturday, one in the morning and the other in the evening. The peak-hour slots for the Cross-Harbour Tunnel and Eastern Harbour Crossing will be the same: 7.48am-10.15am, and 4.38pm-7pm. The rush-hour timings for the Western Harbour Crossing will differ slightly, at 8.08am-10.15am, and 4.58pm-7pm.

CROSSINGCURRENT TOLLPEAK-HOUR TOLL
Western Harbour CrossingHK$60HK$60
Cross-Harbour TunnelHK$30HK$40
Eastern Harbour CrossingHK$30HK$40
A comparison between the current fixed toll and the new peak-hour toll for private cars that use Hong Kong’s cross-harbour tunnels

During these times, commuters in private cars who use the Cross-Harbour Tunnel and the Eastern Harbour Crossing will have to pay HK$40, while it will cost motorists who go through the Western Harbour Crossing HK$60. Tolls will also increase or decrease by HK$2 every two minutes during the change from rush-hour to normal periods to discourage motorists from speeding up to cross before prices change.

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During normal hours on all three tunnels — between 10.30am and 4pm — the toll will be HK$30 for private cars. On Sundays and general holidays, private cars will be charged HK$25 between 10.10am and 7.15pm at all three tunnels. However, under the new system, taxis will continue to pay HK$25 the entire day on all days of the week.

Vehicles using the Eastern Harbour Crossing (© Qwer132477 via WikiCommons)

Earlier this year, the Transport Department announced that, starting August 2, the tolls would change on all three cross-harbour tunnels in Hong Kong. There was a 20% decrease for private cars that take the Western Harbour Crossing, but tolls went up by 50% for those that use the Cross-Harbour Tunnel. This summer, the government made the use of the HKeToll facility mandatory for all three tunnels, starting with the Cross-Harbour Tunnel in July, followed by the Eastern and Western harbour crossings in August.

Header image credits: Leung Cho Pan via Canva

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From the Middle East to the Far East and a couple of places in between, Anjali has lived in no fewer than seven cities in Asia, and has travelled extensively in the region. She worked as a lifestyle journalist in India before coming to Hong Kong, where her favourite thing to do is island-hopping with her daughter. You can check out her musings on motherhood, courtesy her Instagram profile.

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