Eye on the Bay

4 Ways To Save On Golden Gate’s New $7 Bridge Tolls

By Bill Disbrow
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Cars pass through the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Cars pass through the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The toll to cross the Golden Gate Bridge will go up next week (and every summer for the following four years), meaning it’ll cost $7 for the average Joe to cross the span next Monday, and $8 by 2018. So what are you going to do about it, aside from complaining? Here are some simple cost savers:

  • Get FasTrack
    If you cross Bay Area bridges and don’t think my odds of talking you into it are any better than getting my mom on board, but come on, what’s the hesitation? It saves you a buck of the Golden Gate Bridge Toll and a ton of time watching the drivers in font of you scrounge their glove boxes for the enough change to cross any of the major local bridges.
  • Bike/Walk –
    I realize that this isn’t going to work for everyone, and that the SF – Marin bike culture can be a bit intimidating, but if you are just going to Sausalito for the day you really could save the whole $7 toll by picking a more eco-friendly mode of transportation. Plus, you might feel inspired to do an impromptu street performance for the tourists on the bridge and maybe come out ahead on the whole deal.
  • Carpool
    This option is only for people who have FasTrak and proper tags, but it will save you $ during carpool hours (5-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m – holidays excluded). We usually call those people commuters.
  • Public Transit -
    I know, the thought of riding Muni all the way to Marin sounds awful, but that’s not what we’re talking about here. Golden Gate Transit buses aren’t regularly getting mistaken for the Google fleet, but they are clean, the seats aren’t made of plastic and you won’t ever have to yell ‘step down’ at a clueless rider. Here’s a look at where they pick up. The cost of a round trip ride will be slightly more than the toll, but with gas parking and the hassle of driving it will be worth it. Don’t forget the ferry option the ride from the Ferry Building to Sausalito or Larkspur costs slightly more than the bus, but comes with a killer view and a bar where you can spend that money you are saving on car travel.

Did I just blow your mind? No. All of these options leave you paying more than you would like to travel across the regions top tourist attraction, but they can take the sting out a bit.

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