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Your Guide to Private Number Plates

My wife bought me a private number plate for my 21st birthday which was 4 years ago now. I have always said that I’d like my own number plate so it honestly was one of the best presents I’ve received!

My number plate reads – R14 TPW. R stands for Rebeka (my wife’s name), 14 is the year we got married (2014) and TPW is my initials (Thomas Paul Williams). So to many people this doesn’t mean anything but to me it’s very special and it’s nice to know that I can take this plate with me every time a get a new car!

Having private plates does bring with it a few things you need to think about. I hope this post will act as a mini guide for any of you that have your own number plate or ever do in the future.

Where do you buy a Private Number Plate From?

The first step is knowing where to buy a private number plate from. There are a couple of ways in which you can do this.

The first way is to visit the DVLA where you can purchase directly or via an auction. They hold around 6 auctions every year.

Another way is to visit a private dealer such as NewReg.co.uk. This particular company has really good reviews on their website with people saying just how easy the process of buying a plate is!

Different Types of Plates

There are various different types of number plates that you can purchase.

These are as follows:

  • Current Style Number Plates
  • Prefix Number Plates
  • Suffix Number Plates
  • Dateless Style Number Plates

Current Style number plates are made up of 2 letters, a 2 figure age identifier and then 3 letters to finish off.

Prefix number plates start with the age identifier, such as – S73 VEN.

Suffix number plates have the age identifier at the end, for example – JEN 11E.

Dateless or cherished number plates don’t have an age identifier present. They contain a number combination and then a letter combination. These are generally the more expensive plates that you come across. You can also opt for 4D plates for your special number.

How Expensive are Private Number Plates

Private number plates can be very expensive. The most expensive plate ever purchased was – 25 0.

This plate was bought by a Ferrari dealer in 2014, costing a massive £518,000!

The next one on the list is – F 1. This was bought back in 2008 for £440,000 by a business man from Bradford. He assigned the plate to his McLaren Mercedes SLR.

These plates may be well out of your price range but there are much cheaper options out there with prices generally starting at around £250 for a private plate.

A private number plate would go down as a brilliant gift for any proud car owner so if you have a family member with a big birthday coming up, maybe it’s worth looking into this further! I’m sure the would be thrilled to have their own number plate.

Registering Your New Number Plate

Once you’ve purchased your private number plate, the next step is to register the plate and assign it to a car.

You should receive a V750 (Certificate Of Entitlement) within the post roughly 2-4 weeks after you’ve bought your number plate.

This is what you will need to assign the plate to a car. This has to be done via the DVLA which can easily be done online or by phone.

Once this has been done, you will need to wait for the V5C registration certificate before having your new plates fitted.

Don’t forget that you will need to notify your insurance providers of the change to your number plate!

What Happens when Changing Cars?

The good thing about a private number plate is that when you get a new car, you can place it on your new car as well!

There is a process that needs to be followed in order to do this though.

To do this, you will need the following documents for both your old car and new car:

  1. V5 registration documents.
  2. Valid MOT certificates both cars are over 3 years old.
  3. A cheque for £80 made payable to DVLA for the transfer fee. 
  4. A completed V317 transfer form.

The V317 form can be downloaded from the DVLA website and looks like this:

Fill in the details of your old car on the left and the new car on the right. This will need to then be sent to DVLA, Swansea. SA99 1DS, along with the £80 fee.

This is option A but there is also another option. If you’d like to keep the number plate but not place it onto a car, you can put the plate onto a retention document which can be done via post or online. This will allow you to keep the plate for 10 years, giving you plenty of time to assign it to another car in the future!

I hope this post has proven useful for anyone looking to purchase a private number plate or for anyone who’s recently purchased one!