Using the 495 and 95 Express Lanes is easy and provides you with a predictable trip on the Capital Beltway and on I-95 in Northern Virginia. Whether you travel by car, carpool, motorcycle or bus, the Express Lanes give you the freedom to control how and when you arrive at your destination.
The Express Lanes operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Drivers can use the lanes anytime and tolling is always in effect. All drivers need an E-ZPass and carpoolers need an E-ZPass Flex. Dynamic tolls are used to manage traffic and keep traffic moving at highway speeds. Vehicles with more than two axles and towing trailers are prohibited on the Lanes. The 495 and 95 Express Lanes are connected so you can enjoy a predictable trip for over 40 miles.
The 95 Express Lanes are 29 miles long and located in the center of I-95. The Lanes are reversible. They flow northbound toward Washington, D.C. during the workday morning commute and southbound toward Fredericksburg for the afternoon commute.
The 495 Express Lanes include two lanes on both the inner and outer loop of the Capital Beltway in Northern Virginia. The Lanes span approximately 14 miles on the Beltway and are also located in the center of the highway. They are separated from the regular lanes by white posts which drivers should never attempt to pass through.
If you plan to travel on the Express Lanes with fewer than three people in your car, you will pay your toll with an E-ZPass®. The Express Lanes will use all-electronic tolling to securely charge your E-ZPass account and keep you moving – there are no toll booths to slow you down and no options to pay cash.
Carpools can use the lanes without paying a toll. If you carpool on the Express Lanes, you need three people in the car and an E-ZPass® FlexSM set to HOV mode. The E-ZPass Flex is your way to tell the Express Lanes operator that you are carpooling to ensure you are not charged a toll.
You will see pricing and regulatory signage in advance of all Express Lanes entrances. These signs guide you to the lanes, explain the rules of the road and provide you with information on current toll pricing. Once you see the price and determine you want to take the Express Lanes, you will enter the lanes on a ramp that will bring you directly into the Express Lanes. It's that easy.
Once you are on the 95 Express Lanes, you will use dedicated Express Lanes ramps to exit directly onto major roadways or back to the regular lanes on I-95. On the Beltway, you can only exit from the 495 Express Lanes onto the regular Beltway lanes at the beginning and end of the 495 Express Lanes – in the area just south of Braddock Road, or north of the Dulles Toll Road.
Check out the new Express Lanes signage so you'll know what to look for on the road
Fast Facts about Using the Express Lanes
Driving Reversible Lanes
The 95 Express Lanes are reversible. Gate transition time on the I-395 HOV and 95 Express Lanes facilities will temporarily increase during the nighttime hours due to remaining construction activity. Ultimately, the gate transition period will return to standard times.
Please note the schedule is approximate and will vary based on real-time traffic conditions. Some entry points close or open before others. Here's what you need to know:
|CLOSED**||OPEN Southbound||OPEN Northbound|
|Midnight to 2:30 a.m.||Midnight to 2 p.m.||Midnight to midnight|
|2:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.||2 p.m. to 4 p.m.|
|11 a.m. to 1 p.m.||4 p.m. to midnight|
|1 p.m. to midnight||*Subject to change
**Except on Monday