Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT)

Format of registration plates

General

The format, dimensions and technical specifications of registration plates to be displayed on motor vehicles are detailed in S.I No. 318 of 1992 (as amended).

Generally, the registration plate must consist of:

  • black numbers and letters on a white reflective background
  • the name of the county of registration in Irish at the top of the plate
  • the flag of the European Community comprising twelve gold stars in a circle with the letters IRL in white on the left-hand side of the plate on a blue reflective background.

No other numbers, letters or marks should appear on the plate.

Vehicles registered before 31 December 2012

The format YY - County - sequential number will apply to all vehicles that were first registered before 31 December 2012, either in Ireland or another country.

So, for example, if you import a car from the UK in 2017 and that car was first registered in the UK in 2011, then it will get an 11-xx-xxxx registration number.

Image of acceptable pre 2013 number plate format

Image of acceptable pre 2013 number plate format

Vehicles registered since 1 January 2013

The format YY[1 or 2] - County - sequential number will apply to all vehicles that were first registered since 1 January 2013, either in Ireland or another country: 1 follows the YY for registrations between 1 January and 30 June, and 2 for registrations between 1 July and 31 December.

Image of acceptable post 2012 number plate format

Image of acceptable post 2012 number plate format

Image of acceptable post 2012 number plate format

Image of acceptable post 2012 number plate format

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