File image of toll booths on a motorway in Spain. Pedro Luis Merino
These are the 11 stretches of toll roads in Spain that you can use for free, but there is a catch

These are the 11 stretches of toll roads in Spain that you can use for free, but there is a catch

Most of them are around the country's capital, but there is one in Malaga province included on the list

Jaume Lita

Wednesday, 19 June 2024, 17:40

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It is true that in recent years the total number of kilometres of toll roads in Spain has dropped. The Government liberalised some sections, but despite this the sum of the current sections reaches 1,435 kilometres across the entire national highway network.

Every time you arrive at a toll booth you have to pay directly for part of the journey and the price has not stopped rising, but there is still the option of not paying anything to drive on a toll section. What the following 11 roads in Spain have in common is that they offer a few hours every day when you do not have to pay anything at all. The decision is not global though, it depends on each operating company

Of these 11 routes, six are in the Madrid region and cover the stretch between the capital and medium and long-distance towns. It is possible to travel between Madrid and Guadalajara or Toledo, for example, without paying anything. The same applies to the toll road between Madrid and Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport. However, all stretches have the same free hours which are from midnight to 6am.

In order to take advantage of the toll-free route, the time of departure from the road will be counted, so it will not depend on passing through the first toll gate, but on the one where the paid route is completed. There are 11 roads in Spain which, despite being toll roads, are free of charge during the early hours of the morning.

The hours with free tolls are the hours when traffic intensity is at its lowest, so it is a measure of each management company to increase the use of these specific stretches. Between midnight and 6am there is no charge for driving on the R-2 between Madrid and Guadalajara, as well as on the R-3 between the Spanish capital and Arganda del Rey, the R-4 between Madrid and Toledo and the R-5 between Madrid and Navalcarnero.

Before leaving the capital, there are two other roads that are completely free during the early hours of the morning: the M-12 between Madrid and Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport and the AP-41 between Madrid and Toledo.

The other five Spanish roads without tolls are: the AP-36 between Ocaña and La Roda, the AP-8 between Bilbao and Santurtzi and the AP-46 between Malaga and Alto de las Pedrizas.

The last two sections are on the same road: the AP-7. Until not so many years ago this stretch was strictly toll, and it they are still maintained at most points, although it is free during the early morning hours between Cartagena and Murcia and on the Alicante ring road.

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