Thanks to initiatives taken by a few license plate afficionados, State Secretary for Mobility Melchior Wathelet has decided to allow a nearly total freedom in the choice of a vanity plate.
Golden rule: any combination consisting of 1 to 8 characters is allowed. Every letter, digit and dash counts as 1 character; between each (group of) letter(s) and (group of) digit(s) comes a dash.
Every vanity plate shall start with the DIV's official seal ('CV' for 'circulation' and 'verkeer'), just to the right of the Belgian Euroband. The personalized combination will be centered on the remaining white space, as examplified by the following renderings:
Furthermore, it will be possible to add a dash between two digits, or between two letters to create words, e.g.
– Every personalized combination shall include at least 1 letter, because license plates ranging from 1 to 999 are reserved for the Royal Household. An exception exists for pre-1954 vehicles that were equipped with red-on-white enamel plates with a number ranging between 1000 and 999999: their owners can reclaim the right to use the original registration number on the condition that they prove that the vehicle was once registered under the said number.
– The following combinations are forbidden in order to avoid confusion with plates that could be issued in the future:
- 4 letters followed by 3 digits (e.g. GLAD-001: this combination is already used by tractors [dashes are not taken into consideration in the database])
- 3 digits followed by 4 letters (e.g. 123-AIDA: someday, there could be a 123-AID-A plate [index letter A and inversion of the combination])
- 4 digits followed by 3 letters (e.g. 2107-BEL: someday, there could be a 2-107-BEL plate [ordinary license plate with index digit 2 and inversion of the combination])
- 3 letters followed by 4 digits (e.g. USA-0407: someday, there could be a USA-040-7 plate [ordinary license plate with index digit 7])
– Combinations starting with the isolated letters CD (e.g. CD-001, CD-1-US) are forbidden in order to avoid the confusion with diplomatic license plates
– The following combinations are forbidden in order to avoid confusion with plates used by ministers and members of the different Belgian parliaments:
- A-0 to A-999999 [federal ministers, state ministers, high-ranked judges, province governors, heads of ministries and cabinets]
- E-0 to E-999999 [regional and community ministers, directors of staff]
- P-0 to P-999999 [members of the Senate, Chamber of Representatives, Flemish Parliament, Walloon Parliament, Brussels Parliament, European Parliament]
Special case (1): the 'semi-personalisation' (cases where the choice of the registration is not actually free):
– people who still own a pre-European license plate (e.g. 631-BSU) will be able to keep their registration number for a 1000 euro fee (perhaps for a 500 euro fee in the future)
– [NOT POSSIBLE AS OF 31 MARCH 2014] people who wish to re-use a registration number that belonged to them or to a member of their family can pay a 500 euro fee to be allowed to use that number again. Let us imagine that you would like to pay a tribute to your grandfather whose license plate number was 32-B-32; if you have evidence of this and you pay 500 euros, you can get the right to drive around with the same registration. [NOT POSSIBLE AS OF 31 MARCH 2014]
– [NOT POSSIBLE AS OF 31 MARCH 2014] people who wish to re-use a registration number that used to be on a given car (as evidenced by an official document) can pay a 500 euro fee to be allowed to use that number again. Let us imagine that you have proof that your 1955 Corvette was first equipped with 1.D.873, you can get the right to drive around with the same registration. [NOT POSSIBLE AS OF 31 MARCH 2014]
Special case (2): vanity plates for oldtimers
– so far, owners of vehicles aged 25 or more who wanted a vanity plate had to chose a combination whose group of letters started with an O (e.g. ONE-001, 911-OOO, 9-OXK-140 or 9-009-OOO).
– since oldtimers are subject to a series of rules (e.g. no commercial use), the police wanted to be able to identify them easily via their plates. Instead of once again imposing a combination starting with an O, it was decided to add a red 'OLDTIMER' sticker below the DIV's official seal.
Special case (3): owners of pre-31 March 2014 vanity plates
– if you own a license plate issued between 1995 and 15 November 2010, you can pay 30 euro to get a European duplicate of your registration number (original proof of payment might be needed)
– if you own a license plate issued between between 16 November 2010 and 30 March 2014, you can pay 30 euro to get a duplicate of your registration number without index digit 9
Changing a registration completely (e.g. changing 004-FUN or 9-004-FUN to 4-FUN) will not be possible unless you pay a 1000 euro fee. However, it is not excluded that this option could become available in the future.
– Ordinary vanity plates (1000 euros):
– Oldtimer vanity plates (with red sticker):
– Vanity plate based on a disused number (the dash in the middle should not be there):
– Ordinary vanity plates; square format (340mm x 210mm):
– Ordinary vanity plates; small format (210mm x 140mm)
– A set of vanity plates: