On Dec. 5, Virginia’s HOV Rules Will Change on I-66. Here’s What to Know

A big warning for drivers in Northern Virginia: Changes are coming to Interstate 66, both inside and outside the Capital Beltway.

HOV requirements along the entire length of I-66, from Rosslyn to Gainesville, will go from HOV-2 to HOV-3 starting Dec. 5. All other drivers will have to pay to use the toll lanes.

Drivers should make sure they have the right E-ZPass transponder for their vehicles, the Virginia Department of Transportation said.

“So you do need to have an E-ZPass Flex to be able to push it into that HOV mode to get the full 100% discount” when you’ve got the right number of people in your car, a VDOT official said.

For the stretch of I-66 inside the Beltway, this only applies to rush-hour periods eastbound in the morning and westbound in the afternoon. The simplest way to remember all of this changing information: If you want to ride the toll lanes all around Northern Virginia for free, you need three or more people in your car.

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