Posted by: debrakolkka | March 24, 2011

I have a telepass

I have had enough of struggling with the Alt Stazione. Click here to see one of the reasons why. In my quest to get a telepass I started asking friends how to go about it. None of the locals I know have one and don’t know anything about them. I asked another foreigner here in the village and he said first you have to go to the bank and then go to a Punto Blu office beside an Alt Stazione.

I went to the bank and they didn’t want to know about it. In the meantime, I had heard that it was possible to get one at the post office. I lined up for the usual 40 minutes at the post office only to be told that I need a current account at the post office to get one there. I don’t have one of those.

So, off I went to the Alt Stazione at Lucca Est – no Punto Blu. I went to the Alt Stazione at Lucca Ovest – no Punto Blu. I had to come back through Lucca Est to come home so I asked the man at the pay station. He said I would have to go to Pisa Nord or Florence – another day.

Yesterday I went to Pisa Nord, went through the pay booth, located Punto Blu and nervoulsy approached to try my luck. It was surprisingly easy. The man at the counter was friendly, efficient and very helpful. He also had a sense of humour, something quite rare behind a desk in Italy.  When I asked if I could use my new telepass immediately he replied “Certo, siamo in Italia” and had the good grace to laugh.

I took myself off to Marina di Pisa for lunch and when I came back through the Alt Stazione my telepass beeped, the barrier rose and I drove through – wonderful!

So, here is what to do to get a Telepass.

1.  Go to your nearest Punto Blu. You will find them beside some Alt Stazioni, but not all. There is a list on the internet, but it was not correct. It said there was an office at Lucca Ovest and there is not.

2. Take your codice fiscale, carta di identita and your bancomat card with pin.

3.  Hope you get somebody on the other side of the desk who will help you.

Good luck and happy driving.


I suggest you all go back to the previous post and go to comments. Jan has come up with the perfect explanation for the sale of the 2 rooms.


  1. Hysterical and soooo true. I have a similar story about moving a car to Italy, having to change all the glass in it (why?), waiting for certification, having my title translated and notarized in the US, going to driving school, etc. etc. etc. Nightmare. But a funny nightmare.

    • I’m hoping the telepass will be the last of our car issues, but I suspect not. I now have my Italian licence and hopefully all the paperwork I need. We shall see.

  2. Impressed with your determination! Hoped to catch you in Il Monaco today as I had to go to post office (empty! no queue) was there 9.15 but didn’t spot anyone I thought might be you! Will try another time! Caroline

    • We must have just missed each other. The apple sfoglia I had this morning was perfetto!

  3. Oh boy! Your obtaining a pass for the Alt Stazione shows Italian bureaucracy at its worst. I was sweating on your behalf at all the exertion you had to do to purchase a simple pass! I don’t know if I’d have the courage to tackle driving on those Italian roads. When one is a traveller, time is always short, but if one is a resident, those experiences add to the richness of living in Italy.

    • Getting the telepass was quite easy, finding out how to get it was harder, because so much information you are given is incorrect. The man at the desk was one of the nicest and most helpful I have found in Italy.

  4. Yes, it’s those nice, helpful people who make all that your efforts easier at the end. Nothing like a helpful smile and a kind gesture to make someone’s day.

  5. Very interesting post on telepass. I’d love to get a telepass. I have a codice fiscale, uk passport, italian bank account and bancomat card with pin. Would this be sufficient or do I need to become resident in Italy before I can get a telepass? Someone said to me that the toll fees are discounted when you use telepass – is that true? Thanks Debra.

    • You don’t need to be a resident to get a Telepass. What you have should be enough. I think there is a small annual fee to have a Telepass, and I am not sure that there are discounts on the toll fees, but the convenience of not having to scratch for money every time you go through makes any cost worthwhile.

  6. thank you. i’ll let you know how we get on.

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