The operating model that empowers the mantra of ‘one device, one contract’

Date: Thursday September 17, 2020

Today’s blog post is the 4th in our series looking at the EETS (European Electronic Tolling Service) Directive and will focus on the operating model that has emerged as the clear favorite. 

The EETS business model that enables European electronic tolling conformity


Simplified scheme of the roaming model (Source: ETC Global Study)

Compared to other business models, roaming can be applied to international schemes and therefore supports the pan-European interoperability between member states.

More precisely, it allows countries having a single toll charger (as it is the current case in Germany) but also having several toll chargers divided into regions or concessions (such as in Belgium).

The EETS certification involves bespoke testing agencies on the country level for each EETS (candidate) provider but is ultimately granted by the toll charger, as stated in my previous post which can be read here.

Consequently, whilst devices and back-office platforms from each service provider must be (rigorously) tested and certified in each tolling domain, each service provider becomes ultimately responsible for the toll payments.

The roaming model places more emphasis on the device and full responsibility in the hands of the service providers.

Investment costs for establishing and operating the roaming model are met solely by the service providers. These costs can be high as they involve device certification in numerous tolling domains as well as (often protracted) contract negotiations. Also, service providers have contractual data sharing agreements with individual toll chargers and are able to recoup costs from the toll charger.

The tolls are collected electronically by an OBU (On-Board Unit) that every driver has installed in its vehicle and solves therefore the problem of device interoperability.

In fact, the new model empowers service providers but enhances new revenue opportunities due to the facilitated extension of their tolling domains.

But how will EETS and the roaming model influence the future ETC market? What changes do we expect in the oncoming years at PTOLEMUS?

Stay tuned for my next blog post where we will discuss possible market evolution scenarios influenced by the adaption of EETS!

Read here my previous EETS insights:

The EETS Directive – an accelerator of a pan-European ETC interoperability

The EETS certification and monitoring process for providers

EETS technologies and the possible adoption of smartphone payments