Trajectory information reported by certain vehicles (Floating Car Data or FCD) can be applied to monitor the road network. Policy makers face difficulties when deciding to invest in the expansion of their infrastructure based on inductive loops and cameras, or to invest in a FCD system. This paper targets this decision. The provided FCD functionality is investigated, minimum requirements are determined and reliability issues are researched. The communication cost is derived and combined with other elements to assess the total costs for different scenarios. The outcome is to target a penetration rate of 1%, a sample interval of 10 seconds and a transmission interval of 30 seconds. Such a deployment can accurately determine the locations of incidents and traffic jams. It can also estimate travel times accurately for highways, for urban roads this is limited to a binary categorization into normal or congested traffic. No reliability issues are expected. The most cost efficient scenario when deploying a new FCD system is to launch a smartphone application. For Belgium, this costs 13 million EUR for 10 years. However, it is estimated that purchasing data from companies already acquiring FCD data through their own product could reduce costs with a factor 10.