How to Find Cheap Number Plates
By: Laura Solloway
Last updated: 17 January 2019
You’ve decided you want to buy a personalised number plate – great! The wealth of designs to choose from and the ability to customise it yourself will feel freeing. The only problem, however, is the price. Of course everyone wants to save money, but not at the expense of a rubbish design that you don’t really like. So, how about a cheap number plate that you do like? We’ll guide you through how to find cheap number plates that tick all the boxes.
The contents of this article include the following:
Several main styles. Tens of legal rules. Thousands of letter combinations. Millions of individual number plate possibilities. And while it makes sense for older plates to be more expensive, there are still many combinations that amount to inexpensive plates. Here are some of the combinations to look out for:
Most of the current or new style (e.g. GE54 YTR) are the cheapest type of license plates due to their widespread availability. Boring as they may be however, at a slightly higher price you could personalise them. Get creative and register M321 UTD for example. Perfect for a gift, or to add some character to your own car (other than naming it, or sticking on those *interesting* car eyelashes).
Plates that spell rare names, in one way or another, will also be advertised at a lower price. It sounds odd, but there is a much smaller demand for an unusual name as opposed to commonly spelt out names like John, Sarah, or Rachel – letters required for these names will be sought after much more in a number plate- and therefore more expensive. So, if your name is uncommon, chances are you’ll be able to get a personalised plate for less!
Less distinguishable names
You could even save a little bit more by replacing some of the numbers or letters used in spelling the intended name. It will be slightly less distinguishable which could make it cheaper, but it will still be meaningful to you/the recipient. For more information on how number plates are valued, read our blog post: How much is my personalised number plate worth?
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Type ‘cheap personalised number plates’ into Google, and hundreds of results will appear. So how do you choose the right seller to buy from? You could manually compare the prices, but who has the time? Plus, there are pros and cons to all methods of purchasing which can affect the price of plates for any person. We cover these pros and cons below to help you choose the seller that will provide you with the cheapest reg plates.
Buying at an auction is a possible option. If you are interested in a plate few other people are, you could get a bargain. However, be warned: whatever appears on the day is all you can bet on, and high interest in a plate you desire may lead you to pay much more than the price of a similar plate online!
Pros: Potential for a really good deal
Cons: High demand could drastically increase the asking price; limited availability (only whatever is available on the day)
The DVLA’s authority is a compelling factor. Prices listed are what you will pay, and don’t include any hidden fees that could increase the overall price. However, their selection may not be to your liking, and unfortunately, they do not allow monthly payments towards a plate.
Pros: No misleading prices
Cons: Sometimes limited choice; no option for payment through instalments
Our personal recommendation would be to purchase from a licensed/registered DVLA plate seller. They have a variety of number plate combinations to choose from, and usually provide the most economical plates out there. Plus, some have the option for paying in instalments, making monthly expenditures cheaper for you.
Pros: Variety of cheap plates; monthly payment options
Cons: Sometimes limited choice
Supply and demand causes the price of a product to fluctuate dramatically. This is no different when it comes to number plates. Here are some examples of plates that will change in price around certain times:
- Wedding plates – weddings are generally more popular around the summer time, so if you’re planning to buy a number plate as a wedding gift, steer clear of buying around this time of the year.
- Valentines/engagement plates – the 14th February, the day of love, has long been a popular day for proposals. Beware of prise hikes for proposal plates around this time.
- New plate releases – new number plates are released in March and September of every year, so it’s possible to bag yourself a bargain around this time when there are more plates available.
- Bank holidays and UK sales – keep an eye out for sale days, where dealers could reduce their prices for a limited time.
Finding the cheapest number plates possible depends on the individual circumstances, including the type you require, the seller you’re buying from, and the time you intend to purchase. However, considering the points we discussed will help you dramatically in finding the plate of the best possible value to you. Take this guide with you whenever you search for a number plate!
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