Is the M6 Toll free at weekends and in the evening


For many drivers travelling from north to south and vice-versa, the M6 Toll road could help cut a significant chunk of time off their trips - but is the road free to use in the evening or at weekends?

Running from J3a south of Birmingham to Junction 11a to the north of the city, the toll road is designed to both cut journey times and ease congestion on the public motorway system around Birmingham. 

Here motoring journalist and expert Pete Barden looks at how to use the paid section of motorway and if it will be free to use at weekends, evenings and bank holidays such as Christmas Day.

Is the M6 Toll Road free to use at the weekend?

No. The toll stretch of the motorway is not free to use at the weekend - either on Saturday or Sunday. The M6 Toll was previously cheaper to use at the weekend, but the prices were changed in October 23.

Is the road free to use at night?

Again, the M6 Toll road is not free to use at night. 

What is the M6 Toll Road and where is it?

The road, also known as the Midland Expressway, is 27 miles long and bypasses Birmingham and surrounding cities in the Midlands. It also allows drivers travelling from the south east to bypass the busy intersection with the M5.

Is the M6 Toll Road free on Christmas Day, New Year's Day and other bank holidays in England?

No. The toll road section of the M6 will not be free for users over Christmas and on New Year's Day 2023/24. 
Payment is not waived on any other English bank holidays. 

Is the M6 Toll road free at Easter?

Unfortunately not. Motorists heading up and down the country over the Easter period will not be able to trim some time off their journey for free, as the toll charges will be applied as standard.
And remember, there are no longer any discount prices for weekends or evenings - so make sure you have means to pay if using the road over the Easter holiday period. 

How much is the toll? 

Here are the prices you will need to pay for driving the entire toll road, or if you leave at an earlier junction. These are new prices from October 2023.



Mainline price (Full M6 Toll)

Junction price

Class 1: Motorbikes



Class 2: Cars



Class 3: Cars with trailers



Class 4: Vans and Motorhomes



Class 5: HGVs and coaches



How much time does it save?
The M6 Toll Road is mainly of benefit for drivers heading from the south east of England to areas in the north west and vice versa. Anyone heading to the south west may not benefit because there is no direct connection to the M5. 
The owners have said that journey time is cut by 25 minutes during normal travel conditions, but Christmas and other bank holidays could see greater time-saving as abnormal congestion clogs the roads around Birmingham. 

Do I pay the toll both ways?

Yes. The charge is payable in both directions. 

Do Blue Badge holders have to pay?

Drivers with Blue Badges must apply and register before using the toll road if they are to avoid charges. 
There is a £7.00 yearly charge to register as exempt from paying the charge.

What if I can't pay the toll?

It has been said that the carriageway layout makes it easy for drivers to inadvertently enter the paid-for section. If you do this and have no method of payment, pull up at the plaza as you exit and press the assistance button. You will then be able to give your details and a payment notice will be issued to pay online later. Failure to pay this notice will result in a penalty of up to £70.

Can I pay with cash?

No - the option of paying with cash was removed during the pandemic, it has now been decided to make this a permanent policy. 

How do I pay for using the toll road?

There are three options open to drivers using the paid-for stretch of motorway when it comes to paying the charge:
  • TAG
  • Card - debit or credit and fuel cars.
  • Contactless cards

Find out more information about paying to use the road here

Author: Pete Barden:

Twitter: @pete_barden

Pete Barden is a qualified journalist who has written and produced for publications including The Sun (, New Statesman Media Group, Whatcar? ( Stuff Magazine (, Fastcar Magazine (, Maxim Magazine and UK broadcast stations within the Heart network (Formerly GCAP). Pete specialises in motoring and travel content, along with news and production roles. You can find out more about Pete Barden on LinkedIn.

 About us: Pete Barden Motoring and Travel News

See our privacy page here