Private Number Plates: What You Need to Know

Number plates, also known as license plates, are an important part of the vehicle licensing system, but they aren't typically associated with creativity or personality. Once you are assigned a number, you aren't allowed to rearrange or otherwise modify your plate according to your whims.

What Are Private Number Plates?

Private (or personalized) number plates are custom plates that are tailored to your desires, allowing you to choose your own combination of characters. These can generally be purchased from your local vehicle authority, as well as from certain authorized private dealers.

Depending on your jurisdiction, you may also be permitted to include graphics, logos, or other non-alphanumeric symbols. That way, you could represent a favorite sports team, organization, or business on your plate. Take  a look at this link for more information. 

Why Have a Private Number Plate?

Personalized plates have become seen as almost an art form in themselves. Before instant-access social media came around, they were an efficient way to express an opinion or get a message out. You could communicate a short point in a powerful way that could reach many people without too much effort on your part. Since you'll be paying a premium to be able to customize your license number, you want to put some thought into it. Don't make a silly decision on a whim that could embarrass you every time you're out in traffic.

That said, you can't put absolutely anything you want on a private plate. Some examples of forbidden content would include anything that intends to deceive viewers about the registration or status of your vehicle, as well as material that could be judged as crude or offensive. Don't promote illegal activities such as street racing on your plate.

What Will I Need?

You'll need a few things to get started. Some are obvious, such as your driver's license and vehicle registration. Beyond those, you may also need to pay any outstanding tickets or fines before you are allowed to proceed with a private license.

The exact requirements will also vary according to whether you purchase your plate from your government's vehicle authority or a private company. Generally, a local government office will be able to process your identification more efficiently, but may not be able to provide the same level of customization as a company that specializes in this area.

Overall, personalized number plates are an often-overlooked way to spruce up your vehicle and add a little personality to an otherwise boring item.