Electronic Vignette Inspection in Slovenia
Most people know that a vignette is required to use the motorways and expressways in Slovenia. A vignette can be purchased at various sales offices before entering the country and its road network. Nevertheless, some drivers do not have the required proof of payment and end up in a spot check. What happens then should be avoided if possible because, during an inspection, the driver will be issued a penalty, which consists of a fine. To explain why you should follow the country's regulations on road use, we will present an overview of the inspections and fines below. You will certainly not forget to buy the required vignette online during your next trip to or through Slovenia. You can use our site to conveniently buy a Slovenian vignette.
How is the vignette checked?
Drivers who try to drive their car from one place to another in Slovenia without a vignette will quickly learn that any violation does not go unnoticed. Although there are plenty of smaller expressways and motorway slip roads beside the major toll booths where you might think you can get away without being fined, regular checks take place at these locations as well. In Slovenia, vignette checks are carried out in several ways. You've probably noticed when passing through that local police departments monitor the roads on-site. Since it is not possible for officers to immediately identify whether a driver is complying with the toll, the vignette in Slovenia is checked via video surveillance.
Although the digital vignette was introduced at sales offices only a few months ago and the monitoring system had to be revised along with it, video surveillance is already functioning at all points where tolls are charged. To be precise, 600 kilometres of motorway in Slovenia are monitored electronically. Based on this number, it’s obvious that attempts to violate the regulations will probably fail and end in a fine. The penalty notice is then either sent by mail or delivered directly by the police on-site. As soon as one of the cameras records a violation, officers are notified and intercept the driver on motorways, expressways or at borders and rest stops. Here you can find a map with all Slovenian toll toads.
Fines SloveniaThe reason why officers often take action immediately and stop the drivers while they are still on Slovenia’s motorways is that the penalty notices often cannot otherwise be served. For citizens who do not live in the EU, issuing fines is particularly difficult. For example, if a penalty notice is sent abroad from Slovenia, the EU framework decision on the enforcement of financial penalties, also known as RBGeld, comes into effect. The decision applies to all EU countries and therefore also states that penalties initiated abroad can be enforced in those countries.
You can only object to the penalty if you can prove that you were not actually in Slovenia at the time of the violation or that the notice contains an error. So, whether you are checked in Slovenia or the penalty is sent by post is basically irrelevant. You must comply with the request of the Slovenian motorway company, which is Dars in this case.
How high are the fines?It is not possible to say in advance exactly how much your fine will be, as several factors play a role in the calculation. However, according to the official information, the payment typically ranges from 300 to 800 euros. So, compared to the actual cost of the tolls, the penalty is significantly higher. What is also striking about the data is that Slovenia stands out from its neighbouring countries. In Austria, fines start at 120 euros, while in the Czech Republic, they start at 185 euros. Although the upper limits are not specified in these examples either, the amounts are nevertheless significantly lower at first glance compared to those in Slovenia. If you are caught travelling without a vignette, you will have the opportunity to pay a lesser amount if you agree to pay the fine on the spot in Slovenia. The "discount" in such a case can be up to 150 euros.
The most common mistakesSome drivers do not deliberately violate the specifications. As mentioned above, the system was digitised a few months ago. For this reason, some changes have occurred, which in some cases can lead to mistakes. In addition, since different rules and regulations apply in the respective countries, confusion can arise here as well. Below, we will present an overview of the most common mistakes when buying a vignette and explain how you can avoid these missteps when on holiday.
Wrong vignette for SloveniaA wrong number on the car’s license plate can result in the vignette not being assigned correctly during an inspection in Slovenia. When buying a vignette, several details must be stated, which must be correct. Even regarding toll class, with a total weight over 3.5 tons, or the number of axles on the vehicle, errors occur from time to time. All of this results in the fact that when driving through Slovenia, you must expect an inspection and fines if you do not fully comply with the specifications. Since there have been some changes due to the new regulations, some mistakes regarding validity arise from time to time. Many people make the payment at first but only notice afterwards that the vignette was not valid for the correct period and the obligation was disregarded in this way. Another mistake that occasionally occurs is that drivers simply forget to pay the toll for Slovenia because the toll has already been paid for Austria or another country. Since each country has its own toll system, payment must be arranged for each of them.
Wrong route in SloveniaAnother example of common mistakes is drivers trying to avoid the toll routes, but accidentally ending up on toll roads. Admittedly, it is not easy to completely avoid the toll routes in Slovenia. You must study the route in detail before you start driving and have plenty of time to make your plan a success. Otherwise, you must expect to end up on roads that are subject to the toll system in Slovenia.
Another example of common mistakes is drivers trying to avoid the toll routes but accidentally ending up on toll roads. Admittedly, it is not easy to completely avoid the toll routes in Slovenia. You must study your route in detail before you start driving and have plenty of time to make your plan a success. Otherwise, you must expect to end up on roads that are subject to the toll system in Slovenia. Another common mistake is that drivers simply don't know which routes are subject to tolls. Probably the best-known spot where errors occur time and again is the Karawankentunnel, which is located between Austria and Slovenia. Although the tunnel itself is excluded from the payment system, motorways that are subject to tolls are located on both sides of it. So, if you want to use the tunnel, you must pay. Otherwise, if you don’t have appropriate proof of payment, you are likely to be checked and asked to pay before you reach your actual destination.