Arizona HOV Lane and Freeway Driving

The Arizona Valley is continuously growing and flooding in with new residents. This enormous increase in population has created very dense traffic for daily commutes. To combat this, Arizona has facilitated carpool lanes on the freeways. These carpool lanes are for individuals who choose to carpool together to help decrease the amount of traffic on the highway. Many states use these carpool lanes, and each state has its own set of different laws and regulations. Knowing these rules is essential to prevent you from getting a very heavy ticket fine this holiday season.

How Does the HOV Lane Work?

Using this carpool lane can help you commute much faster. The HOV lane is on most of Arizona’s highways and loops. It runs with the freeways but can have its own exits and moves much easier during heavy traffic hours of the day. There are several rules which can allow you to use the carpool lane:

  1. Having a vehicle with two or more people in it will enable you to use the carpool lane.
  2. Motorcycles with only one individual can use the lane since their vehicle is at max capacity.
  3. Armor Fighting Vehicles (AFVs) such as military tanks and armored vehicles can also use this lane.
  4. Firetrucks, police cars, ambulances, and any emergency response vehicle.
  5. Arizona has an Energy Efficient Plate Program. These hybrid vehicles can apply to be issued an Energy Efficient license plate – only so many are allotted a year.
  6. Arizona Valley Metro buses.

HOV Lane Times and Exceptions

The HOV lane has restricted hours. These hours are Monday-Friday 6:00 am to 9:00 am and 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm – this is during prime rush hour times. If you are an individual without a passenger in your vehicle, you cannot use these lanes during this time. There are no holiday exceptions nor can you use the lane to pass other vehicles during restricted hours.


Currently, Arizona’s HOV lanes are free. In some states, the HOV and carpool lanes can cost. They have been considered adding a toll booth to these lanes, yet they have not added them to date. However, if you use the HOV lane and do not have a passenger or an accepted vehicle, you may be fined a hefty toll. Arizona’s penalty for using the HOV lane can be a minimum of $400. This fine will also affect your driver’s license with points as a moving vehicle violation. 

Be safe while traveling this holiday season and from your friends at Fulton Homes, we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.