San Miguel Corporation (SMC) announced it will again waive toll fees at all its expressways on the eves of Christmas and New Year’s Day, an annual tradition the company’s infrastructure unit fulfills in the spirit of the holidays, and to show its appreciation for motorists’ continued patronage.
SMC Infrastructure said it will waive toll fees at the Southern Tagalog Arterial Road (STAR), South Luzon Expressway (SLEX), the Skyway System, NAIA Expressway, and the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX), on December 24, from 10:00 PM to December 25, 6:00 AM, and on December 31, 10:00 PM to January 1, 2024, 6:00 AM.
“This annual tradition is our way of showing the Christmas spirit, especially for those who for some reason will have to travel late and try to get home to their loved ones. Through this, we hope to help spread the Filipino Christmas spirit, and also wish our countrymen well at the start of the new year,” the company said in a statement.
The company is also advising motorists heading in and out of Metro Manila to expect heavy traffic at all expressways as holiday traffic volume is expected to peak this week, especially during the two consecutive weekends.
It encouraged motorists to allot additional travel time especially if they are headed to transport hubs such as airports, sea ports, and bus terminals for their scheduled trips.
“We appeal to our motorists for patience with the anticipated heavy traffic around Metro Manila, and its impact to their scheduled flights or trips. We advise them to plan their trips ahead and allot more time for travel to make sure they come on time for their trips or flights,” the company said in a statement.
The company also sought to provide clarity on the recent advisory from Philippine Airlines that urged air passengers to arrive at Ninoy Aquino International Airport three to four hours early due to a new toll booth setup at NAIAX Skyway exits.
“While we appreciate PAL’s concern for passengers, we need to make sure that our stakeholders are getting accurate information to avoid confusion. There have been no recent modifications to the toll booth setups or operations at both NAIAX and Skyway toll plazas,” the company said.
The company reminds travelers, especially those catching their flights, to allow extra travel time due to the expected increase in traffic on the expressways.
It has deployed enough traffic management personnel to help keep vehicle traffic moving at exit plazas, in coordination with local police and traffic management offices of local government units.
All construction and improvement works at expressways have also been suspended to further help keep traffic flowing.
The toll operator also reminded motorists to ensure they have enough load on their RFID accounts, and to keep their Autosweep RFID cards in their vehicles. These may be scanned in advance by ambulant tellers who are deployed to speed up exiting vehicles at toll plazas.
For motorists who have yet to get Autosweep RFID tags, the company encourages them to get their free Autosweep RFID stickers at any Autosweep customer service centers and Autosweep kiosks along South Luzon Expressway, Skyway System, NAIA Expressway, STAR tollway, and TPLEX.
To further ensure minimal delays, motorists are also asked to make sure their vehicles are roadworthy, to avoid any untoward incidents along the expressways. For road emergencies at expressways, motorists can seek assistance from the following hotline numbers:
-Skyway System and NAIAx (02-53188655 or 0917-5398762);
-SLEX (049-5087539 or 0917-6877539);
-STAR Tollway (043-7567870 or 0917-5117827);