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In our travels around France we rarely use the Peage sections of autoroutes.
The exception to this is the A16 Boulogne to Abbeville which we often find convenient to use and probably use 4 or 5 times a year.

We used this section last at the end of March this year and had a problem when paying at Abbeville before transferring to the free A28 for Rouen.

Normally we pay €9.80 the Class 2 tariff but have on a couple of occasions been asked for €13.00+ which is the Class 3 tariff.
On the journey in question we were asked for over €20.00 which would seem to be the Class 4 tariff applied to lorries!

The girl in the booth was adamant and while our French is sufficient to get around it is not good enough to win an arguement and we were forced to pay. (The alternative may have been a night in the cells :( )
Although I don't expect to get the money back I have written to the appropriate autoroute authority making a strong complaint.

Has anyone else come across this and if so what did they do about it.
We have considered printing off an A4 size photo of the vehicle with dimensions printed across it which we can hold up at the booth. Do you think this is appropriate?
Other suggestions please.
 

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autostratus said:
In our travels around France we rarely use the Peage sections of autoroutes.
The exception to this is the A16 Boulogne to Abbeville which we often find convenient to use and probably use 4 or 5 times a year.

We used this section last at the end of March this year and had a problem when paying at Abbeville before transferring to the free A28 for Rouen.

Normally we pay €9.80 the Class 2 tariff but have on a couple of ocassions been asked for €13.00+ which is the Class 3 tariff.
On the journey in question we were asked for over €20.00 which would seem to be the Class 4 tariff applied to lorries!

The girl in the booth was adamant and while our French is sufficient to get around it is not good enough to win an arguement and we were forced to pay. (The alternative may have been a night in the cells :( )
Although I don't expect to get the money back I have written to the appropriate autoroute authority making a stong complaint.

Has anyone else come across this and if so what did they do about it.
We have considered printing off an A4 size photo of the vehicle with dimensions printed across it which we can hold up at the booth. Do you think this is appropriate?
Other suggestions please.
Hello Autostratus.

I would use it if it means pay half the price.

Motothomer
 

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:D Hi MOTORHOMER. Qoute:- Has anyone else come across this and if so what did they do about it.
Yes, when we had a Autohomes Frontier they used to charge us whatever they felt they could get away with at the time (seemed like that anyway). Our way around it was not to travel on ANY French motorways unless it is absolutley necessary. I hate to think what they would charge us now. :x
 

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A4 Vehicle Photo

I think an A4 print of the vehicle with all the dimentions visable is a very good idea. :D I am taking my vehilce abroad this year for the very first time and I think this may be an asset for someone like myself, who doesn't speak and other language than English.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've now managed to produce an A4 picture of our motorhome (see here ) which I hope will help us through French tollbooths querying our classification as anything other than Class 2.
 

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Hi autostratus


we used the peage a lot a xmas and when the girls saw us arriving all the said was "6 wheels" and we were charge the premium rate, as with the millau bridge 17.50 euro

Needless to say we will NOT be using them again, we have decieded that we want to see where we have been along our route and not a speeding flash of the route

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Like you we rarely use autoroutes but the A16 south gets us quickly down to Abbeville and Rouen.
When they've charged us the Class 3 tariff we haven't bothered to argue for the sake of €4.00 but on the last occasion we resented having to overpay by €11.00.

We now intend to fight back by producing the picture and demanding a receipt.
I don't know whether we'll win but we might feel better when we lose! :)
 

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Well done, Gillian - that's a good strategy. Maybe also append a copy (in French) of their own regulations that you can hand to them as well?

Full marks anyway - I like fighting bureacracy too! Especially when we win!!!
 

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Hi All

We had a similar sort of 'discussion' when we used the peage to get to the Puy de Fou during August (can't remember which road, sorry). There weren't any operators in the booths when we got to the toll and the ticket machine insisted we were Class 3 rather than Class 2.

When I pressed the buzzer for help, the operator insisted we were Class 3. We sat there until someone came out.. We've got a home-made laminated card with a crude drawing of the van and relevant dimensions and weight in both metric and imperial. We showed that and were let through as Class 2! :wink:

Perhaps I should set up a small enterprise producing tailor-made cards for forum members...... :idea:

Chris
 

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Hi
On our last trip through France I had a lot of different charges applied.
On theonly section of peage we used on the south bound journey Dijon to Lyon we were charged as a class 1 (the van is 2.3 X 7 x 3 high.) The same as a car. Next time we were charged as a class 2 on peage from Spain to Mountpellier. Then from Lyon north we came of at an automatic system and it tried to charge us class 3. So I pushed the SOS and tried to expain in my bad french that I was a camper van and I should be class two the lady on the end of the buzzer then switched to english and said that was fine and reduced the price to class two the cut the cost in half from 46 to 24 euro.
Does anyone know the actual real method of classification ?
 

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Hi all

The official French autoroute site

www.autoroutes.fr

gives the vehicle categories as well as an excellent route planner.
We suffered the same problems with varying charges and shrugged shoulders until the tables, laminated and in French and English, were produced. Immediate reductions and profound apologies!

There is an English button at the top of the page but first print out the French table by highlighting,

"Preparez votre voyage" and then "Informations utiles"

The English page is the same layout.

Bon voyage (at the correct charge!)

Pat and Sue
 

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One of the parameters for class is weight, at 6 tons we are class 3 but often are charged as class 2 . Sometimes I can persuade the toll operator to charge us as class 2, I just say ' camping car class 2' , perhaps they go along for the sake of a quiet life . Last year we were staying at Le Touquet & went thru the toll several times in a weekend each time being charged as class2 except for the last time when we were class3. I argued strongly with the operator saying we had been thru several times as class 2. He wouldn't budge & in the end I paid, then a gendarme appeared & told me to park & wait for him, the toll operator had obviously alerted him. After talking to the operator he came over & just said ok go, thought we might be in for close exam of papers etc.
 

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Gillian , as always your post is most informative and we thank you for bringing this to our attention .. my French MAY see me through but may not either after all these years! We will now prepare a diagram with measurments etc! Planning to take only one toll road but you never know! Thanks again! Ana xx
 

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We used toll roads all the way down to Spain and back in a 3 axle burstner and was charged class 2 at all times with only one toll lady looking along the van whether to charge us more until we told her that we had been charged class 2 all through France
She was fine with this and let us through on a class 2

Hugh
 

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Three criteria are used for defining the category of a vehicle or rig:
1 - The overall height of the vehicle or rig
2 - The total permitted gross weight
3 - The number of axles of the vehicle or rig (in contact with the ground)

Classes
Vehicles whose height is ...
Paticularities
Silhouettes
1
Light vehicles Less than or equal to 2 metres : light vehicles Whatever the number of axles including trailer of Ht < or = 2 metres
2
Intermediate vehicles Greater than 2 metres and less than 3 metres and gross weight < or = 3,5T : panel trucks, small vans, caravans and camper vans Whatever the number of axles including trailer fo Ht between 2 and 3 metres
3
Trucks and buses Greater than or equal to 3 metres or gross weight > 3,5T : trucks and buses with 2 axles Vehicles with 2 axles
4
Trucks and buses Greater than or equal to 3 metres or gross weight > à 3,5T :trucks and buses with 3 or more axles Vehicles with 3 or more axles
5
Motorcycles, side-cars, trikes
 
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