What You Need to Know about Irish Number Plates

Irish Number PlatesUnless you shop for a registration number for your car, you won't realize the importance of number plates. Outwardly, giving your car a number plate is only a legal formality that you need to fulfill. But there're so many other things in it that legal lenses cannot find.

Beauty, stylistic appeal and above all else, getting your car a new persona are some of the aspects that are beyond the legal purview. Maybe you are a hard-headed person, who dismisses all these, but many car owners in the UK look for them at the time of buying a new number plate.

The process of buying a number plate is easy; you can either buy from a DVLA auction yourself or hire a dealer, who'd get you one. I am not about to discuss the process in this article; I'll rather discuss something else, that all number plate buyers in the UK need to know.

It's the Irish Number Plate System.

What is it?

The vehicle registration law in Ireland is different from the law, which is at work in the rest of the UK. The Irish number plate format must be different from the number plate format that rest of the UK follows.

The existing specifications for Irish number plates demand those plates to have the following format:


The first sequence in the format represents a year. All the Ys are to be replaced by digits. The first two digits stand for the year and the last digit for a particular half of a year. So 101 stands for the first quarter of 2010, and 122 indicates the second half of 2012.

The format that was at work from 1987 to 2012 was different. During this time, YY was used instead of YYY. So 96 happened to indicate the year 1996 and 08 to indicate the year 2008. The next two letters CC indicates city or county code. As for the six Ss, they indicate a sequence from the first digit to six digits. They all are identifiers.

The do's and don'ts

There are so many do's and don'ts when it comes to Irish number plates. For example, an owner cannot transfer a registration number that begins with ‘Q' or ‘NIQ' to another vehicle, registered according to the Northern Ireland vehicle registration law. Similarly, a vehicle owner cannot transfer a Northern Ireland registration number to a vehicle, registered at the DVLA.

The benefits

The new Irish number plate system comes with a few benefits. It allows for people to buy a plate in the middle of a year. They won't have to wait for a new year to begin.

How is it so?

When there were two Ys instead of three, digits happened to indicate only the year, not the half. But now, they indicate the year as well as the half, which means the registration number would inform the onlooker which half of a particular year the owner purchased the vehicle.

This in turn, will make the employment graph in the automobile sector more stable. Automobile sale in the UK has been steadily increasing. The demand of new cars as well as the employment drive will both see a drastic increase.

The new number system provides the sellers with a golden opportunity to make profits. All they need to do is purchase a car in the second half of the year. This would give them the opportunity to bag more cash because the valuation of the cars brought in the 2nd half of a year will be more than cars brought in the 1st half.

Letter combinations

Two letters that Irish number plates use and other UK registration numbers don't are ‘I' and ‘Z'. You can call this a privilege that only Irish number plates have Think of those car owners, whose names start with ‘I' or ‘Z.' How delighted would they feel when they'd see their cars would bear their ancestral legacy?

An Irish number plate may cost as high as £95. But that's only when the plate bears certain appealing combinations such as GAZ, BIG, BIZ, TIZ, etc. BIG is a meaningful word, and BIZ is a web extension for business sites.

Before you buy

It's necessary for you to have an idea of Irish number plates, then you'd make a more informed decision before buying. And this article can help you in that.

Contributed by Plates4Less

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