ST. IGNACE (WJRT) (3/18/2020) - Travelers on the Mackinac Bridge will have to remember their credit or debit cards beginning this weekend.
The Mackinac Bridge Authority announced Wednesday it will no longer accept cash payments for fares beginning Saturday and lasting through the coronavirus pandemic.
Payment options include cards, a MacPass card or a windshield sticker.
Mackinac Bridge Authority Executive Secretary Kim Nowack said the switch away from cash will limit the spread of COVID-19, the illness caused by coronavirus, from motorists.
"We realize this change may be an inconvenience for many of our customers, but eliminating the handling of cash between drivers and our employees is one more way we can help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus," she said.
Toll collectors will hold credit card devices out the window of the collection booths so drivers don't have to hand a card to the employees.
Nowack said 64% of travelers have paid their bridge fare in cash so far this month and only 7% used cards.
The Mackinac Bridge already suspended its driver assistance program and other programs for snowmobiles, passengers and bicyclists to limit the spread of COVID-19.