Personalised number plates

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Things You Need To Know About Getting A DVLA Personalized Number Plate

Many people considering getting a DVLA personalised number are discouraged by the fact there are more than 45 million registrations available and so getting the most suitable number plate might seem a daunting exercise. However, knowing how to navigate the search process will help you find the ideal number plate faster than you could imagine. The search process takes some creativity to get what you need and mostly if you are using the official DVLA site, you could search using the yellow super search box available on the top of the homepage. 

You only need to enter your initials or name or something you fancy that you would like added to your number plate and you will be given a selection of choices. Once you spot a number plate that impresses you, just click on the “View Results” link and you will be redirected to see a wider selection in the style. 

Can I take over a previously used number plate?

Unfortunately, you are not allowed to resurrect a personalized number plate that was used previously, and it does not matter if the vehicle no longer exists. This is the position on the official website of registrations and unless the status of the process is updated, you cannot be assured of such an offer. 

Things to note before buying

Before you make a purchase, there are important things you should know. One of the things you might want explained is the issue about the age of your vehicle. You might come across restrictions due to the age of your vehicle, so those with very old vehicles might face challenges while trying to buy a personalized number plate. If the registration number comes with an age identifier, you are only allowed to use it on a vehicle whose age is equal to what is indicated or newer. 

Vehicle requirements to be met
Your vehicle also has to meet certain requirements so as to qualify to be assigned a personalized number plate. One condition you must ensure is met is that the vehicle should be of the appropriate age to get the registration number. The vehicle must also be registered in the United Kingdom and its registration information should be under your name or bear the name of the nominee. You also must ensure the vehicle has an MoT certificate. 

Buying on behalf of someone else as a gift
If you are buying the personalized number plate for someone as a gift, you will be required to provide details of the person so the records can be updated showing the purchaser (you) and the recipient. When adding a nominee, check that the name provided matches with that of the registered keeper. 

Steps for buying a personalised number plate

The steps involved in buying a personalised number plate are simple and straightforward. You will not need to worry a lot about complex processes because all this can be done online with no requirement for physical documentation. 

Head to the official DVLA registrations website and search for the number you like. After you have spotted the number of your choice, you only need to click on “Buy Now” and your order will be processed. You will need to follow a few on-screen instructions to complete the purchase, and these are simple processes you will not need to worry about as they are well explained. If you don’t have an account, make sure to create one as this process requires that you log in to your account so the information is saved in the database. 

DVLA auctions

Besides buying directly, you could apply to be included in the several actions held per year. These auctions offer approximately 1500 registration numbers. You can get highly sought registrations here, most specifically during the ‘Traditional’ auctions. 

You could also take part in ‘Timed’ auctions, which are held up to four times each year, and on this you will get registrations that were requested by the public. To register for the auctions, log on to the DVLA site and download a catalogue of the upcoming auction from the “Auctions” and register as a bidder. The site also gives you answers to many questions you might have about joining a DVLA auction. 

Things you should know after buying your personalized number plate

You need to understand a few things after you have purchased a number plate from the DVLA site. After your online purchase, you will be sent a confirmation of sale, which should take not more than 24 hours. You should also get the Certificate of Entitlement (V750), which is posted to your address (should be received in a maximum of two weeks). 

Assigning the new plates on your vehicle
There is no restriction on when you should assign the new number plate on your vehicle. What you need is to simply apply to assign it. For a vehicle that is not registered (brand new), you should talk to the dealer to have it registered with the new personalized plate. 

If this is agreed upon, you will need to fill the Certificate of Entitlement (V750) and choose “unregistered vehicle” then sign and add the date in this section. This certificate should be handed to the dealer before the vehicle is registered. 

In case the vehicle is registered, you need to apply to be allowed to use a new number plate. Attach the Registration Certificate (V5C) of the vehicle along the Certificate of Entitlement (V750). 

What happens if I changed address recently?

If you changed your address and you are yet to apply to put the number plate on your vehicle and you have at least 5 days before the offer expires, there is room for you to apply for a change of address through your DVLA online account. A new certificate will be delivered within two weeks. 

Note that you must only get your plates made by a registered plate supplier. This will help to ensure your plates are designed and made following the right legal standards. See more about this on the official DVLA website.

How can I check when my Driver’s Licence expires with the DVLA?

UK Drivers Licence

Unlike the old paper licences, UK photocard Driving Licences need to be renewed every ten years to keep the photograph current. According to the DVLA, this is to help identify people using licences fraudulently. Driving with an out-of-date licence can lead to a £1000 fine, so it is important to renew on time. Paper licences issued before 1998 do not expire until the owner’s seventieth birthday, although they can be upgraded to a photocard licence for £20 at any time. All drivers over the age of seventy need to renew their licence every three years, regardless of whether they have a paper or photocard licence.

When does my licence expire?

The simplest way to check when your Driving Licence is due to expire is to look at the photocard itself. Section 4b to the right of the photograph gives the ‘valid to’ date. If you do not have the licence to hand, you can check the expiry date and other details using this service from the DVLA. You will need to provide some further details including your date of birth, national insurance number and home address. 

All drivers should receive a D798 Renewal Notification through the post two months before the expiry date of their licence.

How to renew a photocard licence

You can renew your licence online, by post or in person at selected Post Offices. At £14, renewing online on the DVLA website is the cheapest method. You will need to be a resident of Great Britain, have a valid UK passport, provide your addresses over the last three years, and enter your national insurance number if known. Payment is by credit or debit card.

Renewing by post costs £17 pounds using form D1. You can pick this form up from a Post Office or order it online at this DVLA web page

If you want to renew in person, you can go to a Post Office which does DVLA photocard renewals. The branch finder web page will help to find the nearest one. The Post Office service costs £21.50, including taking a photograph to DVLA standards and checking that the form is filled in correctly. You will need a D798 Renewal Notification or your old photocard licence.

Residents of Northern Ireland can only renew their Driving Licence by post, following the instructions on the nidirect website.

UK Driving Licences can be renewed for free when the driver is over seventy, or has a short period licence due to a medical condition. You can also renew a licence free of charge to change your name, address or gender, provided that the photograph is not changed at the same time. You can update these details as many times as you want, but this does not affect the expiry date of the licence.

More information

The DVLA and the Post Office provide useful information about how to renew your licence on the pages below.

Renewal information from the DVLA website

Frequently Asked Questions from the Post Office

DVLA provisional licence application

DVLA provisional licence application

Driver and Vehicle licensing agency is the executive agency Department for Transport that is located in Swansea. This agency is responsible for vehicle and driver registration, issuance of driving licenses, acting on tax evaders, and working with police and intelligence to deal with crime. One of the license that this agency issue is the provisional DVLA license. The following is some information regarding this type of license. 

How to download the provisional license application form

The provisional license can be applied online or you can apply via post. If you choose the latter, then you are supposed to get the application the D1 form from the DVLA form ordering service. On this form ordering service, you will select D1 pack. This pack includes an application for the driving license for a car, motorcycle or moped. After downloading, you print and will fill it and then include an identity document, a color passport-style photograph, and a cheque or Postal order of £43 that is payable to DVLA. 

Can you track your provisional license application?

After you have applied for the DVLA provisional license, you should wait for about 3 weeks for it to arrive. If it takes longer than this, you can contact DVLA through email, Post, and telephone and check on the progress of the application. In order to track your application, you will use your Government Gateway ID and password especially if you applied online. If you have a Northern Ireland driving license, you should then contact Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA). 
DVLA provisional license application contact number
During the application of the provisional license, DVLA has provided contact addresses that the applicant can use in case they need any help. You can call 0300 790 6801 from Monday to Friday between 8 am and 7 pm. On Saturday, this telephone line is open from 8 am to 2 pm. The charges depend on the service providers. 

What’s the DVLA address for provisional license applications?

After you complete filling the downloaded form from the DVLA form ordering service. You are supposed to send it together with payment to:
DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AD
This should only be used only if all your documents are from the UK. If at all you have any document that is from outside the UK, then you should use the following address
DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AF
However when you want to track your provisional license application, then you use the address: 
Drivers Customer Services, Correspondence Team, DVLA, Swansea, SA6 7JL. 

Where and how to find the DVLA class 2 provisional application 

DVLA class 2 license is a type of driving license that authorizes drivers to drive large Goods Vehicle (LGV). This adds higher entitlements to your license and it requires that you have a full car license. This application requires you to obtain D2 and D4 forms from the DVLA forms ordering service. The D4 form is usually posted to you. These forms can be broken into 2; medical paperwork and entitlement application. 

Class 2 Licence

The medical paperwork is filled by a physician after carrying out the mandatory medical examination. After filling this form, it is sent to DVLA as an evidence of driver meeting the minimum requirements on health and safety. Entitlement Application form is filled by the driver and also sent to DVLA. It is good to note that you are not required to pay anything for this application. 

What is a provisional driving license D1?

This is an entitlement that allows you to drive a minibus on a public Highway. A minibus can be described as a vehicle that can carry between 9 – 16 passengers. You will be given this license after applying successfully on DVLA using form D2 and D4. The provisional D1 is added to your license meaning you must first have a car license. 

Does an application form for provisional license expire?

After getting the application form for a provisional license, there is no time limit within which is supposed to be filled. However, the best thing to do is to fill it and send it to DVLA for approval. The faster you send it back means you will not take so long before you are allowed to drive in the UK
Northern Ireland provisional License application
Northern Ireland transport authorities require that you apply for a provisional driving license before you can start learning how to drive. It also required that, if you want to add higher driving categories of vehicles you can drive, then you must also apply for a provisional entitlement driving license for that category. 

The First provisional driving license can only be obtained from Post office branches or MOT test centers. In order to get the first provisional license, you are required to obtain the aDL1 form from the said centers and complete it. You should then send it together with original documentation revealing your identity a passport size photograph and a payment of £62.50 to the following address:

Drivers & Vehicle Agency
Driver Licensing 
Colerain County Hall
Castle Rock Road 

Or you can drop the application at any of the MOT test centers. The payment should be by cheque or postal order payable to DVA
If you are already a holder of full driving license and you would like to add larger entitlement, then you can complete DL2 provisional license application form and DLM1 medical report form both of which can be obtained from the MOT test centers or Post office branches. It good to note that the DLM1 form is supposed to be filled by a physician. The forms should also be sent to the same address as above together with the current driving license, a passport style photograph and a payment of £20
After the submission of the forms, you will wait for 3 weeks before the provisional license arrives and if it tarries, then you a contact DVA inquiries. 

Provisional license renewal application online

If you want to renew your provisional license, you can apply online with DVLA and it requires that you have a valid UK passport. In order to apply, you will use your Government Gateway ID. If you do not have one, then you should re-register and get an ID which will be part of your application. This application is charged £14 and it can be paid using MasterCard, Visa Electron, Maestro or a credit card. You should indicate your current driving license and the address of your residence for the last 3 years. After application, you will have to wait for a week before the license arrives. It good not that the validity of the new provisional license is from the date of your application approval. 

DVLA provisional Application Serial Numbers

DVLA provides a serial number to the provisional licenses that they issue. The first five characters are derived from your first five characters of your surname and if the surname has than five characters, the 9 is added to fill it up. The following 6characters are derived from your date of birth in the YMMDDY. To differentiate between male and female drivers licensee, an additional 0 or 1 is added for male while 5 or 6 is added for female. This gives a unique number for every driver. 
Where to get DVLA provisional License paper application
DVLA distributes provisional License paper application through the certain Post office branch. You can also get these form from the DVLA form ordering service. 

Where do I send my DVLA provisional application? 

After filling the Provisional license application form, you are supposed to send the application by Post to DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AD if all your documents are from the UK and to DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AF if any of your document is not from the UK. 
Will DVLA refund provisional application?
In case you decide to cancel your provisional application, then you can give a call to DVLA support and inform them. Refunds are processed within a few weeks after the cancellation. However, this cancellation can only take place within 14 days after application.

DVLA changes for April 2019

Car Emissions

Vehicle Excise Duty (Car Tax)

Car tax is expected to rise in 1st April in the United Kingdom which marks the third increase in vehicle excise duty in the past three years. It was announced at the beginning of the year 2019 in the autumn budget of 2018. The excise duty is expected to rise by about £65. This rise in tax is smaller to most drivers operating on the roads which will raise their annual cost by £5 and this is affordable to most drivers. On the other hand, motorists will experience an annual increase in the cost of £15. The document reads that rates of cars, vans, and motorcycle will increase in line with RPI.


Motorists with worst Vehicles which produce a high level of CO2 which pollutes the environment will suffer the high-cost increase. This rise in vehicle tax comes again as the third experienced in the past three years after a rise in cost in 2017 and 2018; the rise of diesel car cost was expired in 2018. This was to act against those people who wanted to buy vehicles which use diesel type of fuel due to the introduction of new real World Driving Emissions standard. The cars which could not reach the standard could pay more tax. 

Vehicles Registered between 1st March 2001 and 1st March 2017

The vehicles which were registered between 1st March 2001 and 1st March 2017 will pay up to £15 extra annual car tax. The cars which were registered between the year 2017 up to the present will face paying up to £65 extra annual cost. Besides the rise in excise duty in line with the inflation as stated by treasury spokesman, the motorists across the country will benefit from fuel freeze enabling them to save an average of £1000 since 2011. The tax rates applied to vehicles which lost over £40,000, chargeable from the second year for five years will also hike.

Smoking Car

The premium tax rate of such vehicles will rise from £310 to £320 annually and the standard rate kept in place in 2017 when the system was hauled also increases by £5 each. It will also increase from £140 to £145 for diesel and petrol models and from £130 to £135 for hybrid models. To check how much you need to pay then you need to use the tool on the Vehicle Certification Agency website. As a driver, you can be fined a minimum of £80 for failing to have a valid car tax which can rise if caught by police or presented in the court.