Why Do Car Number Plates Change Every Year in the UK?

If you live in the UK, you know that car number plates change every year between March 1 and September 1. So, for example, the September 22 AB22 EFG will now be AB72 EFG. But why is this? Keep reading to find out!

In the UK, it is a law that all vehicles must display a valid registration plate. The current system for number plates was introduced in 2001 and featured a combination of letters and numbers. The format for number plates is two letters, two numbers, and another three letters. The first two letters indicate where the vehicle was registered, while the last three letters are randomly assigned.

The current system replaced an older system that was simply a sequence of numbers. However, this system led to a lot of duplicate registrations, which confused the roads. In order to combat this issue, the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) came up with the new system that we have today.

While the current system is more efficient than the old one, it still has its fair share of problems. For one, it can be difficult to remember your number plate if you don’t see it every day. This is especially true for those who use their vehicles occasionally or have more than one vehicle. In addition, the DVLA issues new number plates twice a year (in March and September), which can be expensive for those who need to replace their plates on a regular basis.


While the current system for car number plates in the UK is an improvement over the old one, it still has its drawbacks. If you forget your number plate often or need to replace your plates frequently, you may want to consider investing in a personalized number plate. This way, you’ll always know your plate and won’t have to worry about replacing it every few years!

Related: Are young Brits pushing the limits too far?

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