US Licence Plates

US Licence Plates

This is a discussion on US Licence Plates within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Can you guys settle a "discussion?" Having just been stopped and fined 60 ($100) for a slightly mis-placed number on my car's licence plate (yes ...

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Thread: US Licence Plates

  1. #1
    Member Array Tint Bob's Avatar
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    US Licence Plates

    Can you guys settle a "discussion?"

    Having just been stopped and fined 60 ($100) for a slightly mis-placed number on my car's licence plate (yes I know...don't go there)

    Can you tell me do all US States allow vanity plates?
    What do they cost?
    Where do you buy them?
    Is there a re-sale market for them?

    Look forward to hearing your replies

    Tint Bob (UK)


  2. #2
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    Here's my new one...I had to pay a little more because the 'life' of my old plate was still good and I wanted this new one that just came out...
    Specialty License Plate - In God We Trust

    The speciality plate is $25 dollars more than a normal plate...so figure around $90 total.
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    In Michigan, and I assume most states, the plates are only available from Secretary of State office. The last time I checked, Michigan has something like 20 alternate plate styles. Most run $5-$20 over the normal fee, which depends on the particular vehicle.

    As for "vanity" plates, I have never been interested enough to check pricing.
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  4. #4
    Member Array Blue Jacket's Avatar
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    This is the special license plate I display. Other selections are listed as well, plus costs, etc.

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    VIP Member Array joker1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99 View Post
    Here's my new one...I had to pay a little more because the 'life' of my old plate was still good and I wanted this new one that just came out...
    Specialty License Plate - In God We Trust

    The speciality plate is $25 dollars more than a normal plate...so figure around $90 total.
    I am really surprised and happy to see that you can display that license plate on your vehicle. I wonder if the PC gangs have tried to put a top to it yet? I hope they do not. Congrats and display it proudly.

    Upon further review, I've seen one in town, but Kansas has a similar plate available along with others.

    Kansas Department of Revenue - Kansas In God We Trust License Plate

    Kansas Department of Revenue - Your Vehicle - Educational Institution Distinctive License Plates

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  6. #6
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    Most, if not all, states now have vanity plates available. Cost varies from state to state. Where you obtain them will depend on the specific state, in Virginia they are purchased through the DMV.
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    Member Array Major G's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by archer51 View Post
    Most, if not all, states now have vanity plates available. Cost varies from state to state. Where you obtain them will depend on the specific state, in Virginia they are purchased through the DMV.
    Additionally, some states it is a one time fee for a vanity plate, some states have a yearly fee.

  8. #8
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    In god we trust,everyone else keep your hands where we can see them and don't move
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    I just checked. You can buy license plates on Ebay, including vanity plates.

    I guess with the lack of crime in the UK, the police finally have time to straighten out the license plate situation?

  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array Chooie's Avatar
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    Here in the US (unlike the UK) every state has their own pool of number and letter combinations - so there may be 50 instances, and all the variations of them, of a given vanity plate. We are limited (for the most part) to a maximum of 6 or 7 characters depending on the state or style. The state issuing the plate also produces the plate - sometimes through prison labor - ensuring uniformity and legibility. IIRC from my visit to the UK (and my love of all things Top Gear) your "generic" registrations are based on a letter prefix. What does this denote? Is it the insurance class, year of manufacture, something like that? I've seen used car lots with a registration already on every car. Here in the US, a car is not registered until the new owner signs the ownership paperwork - the dealer has special plates they can put on any vehicle in their inventory for test drives and such. As such, there is no secondary market here in the US for personalized registrations - when you trade a car into a dealership and purchase a new one you may transfer the existing plate to the new car or cancel it and get a new one for the new car.

    Here in Virginia we have over 350 different images or background to choose from for our license plates, and the personalization fee is nominal (I think $10). We have an online tool to check for availability of a plate, and can also put a hold on that plate for up to 90 days - within that time, we have to go to the DMV (state version of your MOT), fill out a form with our desired plate and pay the fee, simple as that. No auction, no private sales, no people speculating wildly on the popularity of a given plate, buying them up at 2000 just to re-list them at 10000... oh, and because of that, nobody can take your tag from you if you forget to pay the maintenance fee on it.

    British (well, European in general) tags just confused the hell out of me anyway - how do you tell where everyone is from?!

  11. #11
    Member Array Tint Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chooie View Post
    IIRC from my visit to the UK (and my love of all things Top Gear) your "generic" registrations are based on a letter prefix. What does this denote? Is it the insurance class, year of manufacture, something like that? I've seen used car lots with a registration already on every car. Here in the US, a car is not registered until the new owner signs the ownership paperwork - the dealer has special plates they can put on any vehicle in their inventory for test drives and such.
    British (well, European in general) tags just confused the hell out of me anyway - how do you tell where everyone is from?!
    Ok I think I have started an interesting thread.............

    We started out with A1 (its still on a vehicle and I think its worth well over $500,000 )
    Our numbers stay with the vehicle unless you want to transfer it at a cost of around $150, no point unless you have a good number.

    From 1983 our numbers started with A ie A123ABC

    The A is the year, August 1st 1983 to July 31st 1984)
    The figures (anywhere from 1 digit to 3) are unique to the vehicle.
    The ABC is the area the vehicle came from.......

    Around about 2000 we ran out of numbers, so the format was changed, we also had changed the new numbers from once a year to twice (1st March and 1st Sept)
    The new numbers are something like this GY51AKK

    GY is the area (Brighton East Sussex) the 51 is sept 1st 2001, in march 2002 the centre number changed to 02.....and so on.

    With new vehicles, its really similar to the US
    The new vehicle has its number allocated when a customer buys (as per my first part above) it, if a dealer needs to "move" the vehicle or demo it before its sold, we have Trade Plates.
    These are temp plates that the dealer will put on to use the vehicle on the road, it shows the dealer has paid road tax and insurance.

    Trade plates are also used on used vehicles, in the UK we pay a road tax (we call it a tax disc and its a round disc attached to the windscreen of a vehicle, brought in 6 month or 12 month amounts, costing upto 400 ($700) for 12 months)

    Its illegal to use a car on the UK roads without a valid tax disc, our trade plates allow us to drive an un-licenced vehicle to demo or service

    The plates do not show if the driver or vehicle has insurance, there is an insurance database that the police can access where every vehicle is registered (or should be)

    Have a look at this web site, its the DVLA (driver vehicle licencing Authority) DVLA Personalised Registrations - Search and buy personalised registrations direct from DVLA. From 250 fully inclusive.
    This is the gov dept that issues driver licence and new registration numbers, they also have smaller regional offices

    As to European vehicles, well your guess is as good as mine

    The should have an oval 1or 2 letter sticker on the rear of the vehicle, ie F for France SP Spain PL Poland GB Great Britain etc etc

  12. #12
    Member Array Tint Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joker1 View Post
    I am really surprised and happy to see that you can display that license plate on your vehicle. I wonder if the PC gangs have tried to put a top to it yet? I hope they do not. Congrats and display it proudly.

    Upon further review, I've seen one in town, but Kansas has a similar plate available along with others.

    Kansas Department of Revenue - Kansas In God We Trust License Plate

    Kansas Department of Revenue - Your Vehicle - Educational Institution Distinctive License Plates

    Joker1

    My number is K90LAR

    I had "moved it like this K 90LAR

    My business is Solar Screen - glass tinting
    My first name is really Kevin so it says K SOLAR!!!!!!

    The number plate reading cameras cannot see the altered numbers, hence my "fine"

  13. #13
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    Luckily, here in Indiana, we can get "In God We Trust" license plates for no extra fee.

  14. #14
    Member Array steve a.'s Avatar
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    US Licence Plates

    Below is the In God we Trust currently on my Dakota. Also below are some of my 'bank related' vanities. The last vanity I purchased in Indiana about 4-5 years ago was $45.00 in addition to the regular plate fee and vanities are only good for one year.




  15. #15
    Member Array Tint Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve a. View Post
    Below is the In God we Trust currently on my Dakota. Also below are some of my 'bank related' vanities. The last vanity I purchased in Indiana about 4-5 years ago was $45.00 in addition to the regular plate fee and vanities are only good for one year.

    Ha...Really like!!!!
    Our vanity plates are for the life of the vehicle

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