To say that the subject of private number plates in the UK has changed over recent years would be something of an understatement to say the very least. Quite simply, the whole premise is largely unrecognisable to that of just a couple of decades ago, changing the way the British motorist looks at the idea of private plate ownership once and for all.

Of course, those that were driving on UK roads back in the 80s and 90s are maybe under the impression that things are still the same as they were back then. In the days before the advent of the internet and the recent changes rolled out by the DVLA, buying a private plate meant not only forking out thousands for the plate itself, but also going through a rather painful manual process of getting it registered in your name. And of course, with no web there was no resource to head to in order to find out what plates were on offer, so you could only choose from the few you were actually able to find.

All in all therefore it’s hardly surprising that much of the population still has a rather jaded view of the whole private plate subject, but as soon as you get a grasp of how much things have changed as of late, you might just rethink the idea in a big way.

So, according to the folks selling number plates, what are the biggest changes to happen to private plates over recent years?

1 – Endless Choice

Well, first of all there’s the fact that the multiple changes to license plate lettering by the DVLA have resulted in literally tens of millions of new number combinations becoming available to the UK public. What was once a catalogue of maybe a few thousand plates at best is now quite literally an encyclopaedia of unique plates of which each and every one has its own unique glories. It was generally rather difficult to spell out anything meaningful before – your name for example – for the simple reason that number and letter combinations were so restricted and limited. Right now though, it’s pretty safe to say that anything goes and the sky’s the limit for creativity.

2 – The Lowest Prices

Perhaps even more importantly than the endless choice on offer is the way in which this abundance of plate options has made investing in a private plate more affordable than ever before. What may have once cost any average motorist thousands can now be picked up for less than you’d spend on a decent night on the town. Quite literally, there are plates that are being practically given away left, right and centre despite being 100% unique and incredibly desirable commodities. Generally speaking, if the high price attached to private plates was the primary reason any motorist didn’t give the idea a second thought, now’s the time to take a fresh look at what’s on offer.

3 – Ease of Transfer

It’s also worth factoring in the way in which transfer of the plates to the new buyer is now easier than ever before. And not only is it easier than before, it’s plain and simple easy…full stop. If you buy from a reputable online seller that knows what it is doing, it’s simply a case of going through the standard purchase process and submitting a few personal details in order to have all of the admin stuff done on your behalf. This way, not only is there no effort required on the part of the person buying the plate, but there’s also zero chance of facing a DVLA fine further down the line for not doing things properly. It really is as easy as buying anything else online across the board – a few clicks and the plate is yours!

4 – The Same Uniqueness

Last but not least, the one thing that hasn’t changed over the years is the way in which each and every private plate currently up for sale in the UK is a 100% unique asset that will never be repeated, ever again. Whether looking to give the kind of gift that’s guaranteed to be held onto for life or simply looking to take something home that you’ll be just as proud of in 50 years time as you were the day you bought it, it’s difficult to think of anything that ticks all the right boxes quite like a private plate.

It might be time to take a second look at personalised number plates – things have changed a lot!