Number Plate Registration Transfers


The process of transferring a number plate from one vehicle to another can be overwhelming if you’re doing so for the first time. Luckily, Absolute Reg has outlined the entire process in a comprehensive, easy-to-follow way.

What is a Registration Transfer?

A number plate transfer, or 'reg transfer' is the process of changing the registration plate on a vehicle in the United Kingdom. A transfer is completed through the DVLA and usually happens when:

  • You already own a private number plate and need to perform a DVLA number plate change

  • You have sold your personalised number plate and need to legally transfer its registration to its new owner

  • You would like to retain your private number even though you no longer want to use it for the time being

How Do Number Plate Transfers Work?

A number plate transfer is a process that you, the vehicle owner, apply for through the DVLA. This can be done either through the DVLA’s website for a fee of £80, or if you purchase your private number plate through Absolute Reg you can transfer your new plate for free.

The Reg Transfer Process

Whether you choose to transfer your registration plate through the DVLA or through us, you will need to have your documentation ready. Here’s a summary of what documentation you’ll need depending on your circumstances: 

  • To start the reg transfer process you will need to submit a V317 Form. If you are transferring a number plate to another person’s vehicle, you will both need to fill out this form.

  • The V5C vehicle logbook for the vehicle you’re assigning the new plate to.

  • If you want to use the private number at a later date, a V778 (also known as a retention document) and a new log book will be issued to you.

  • If you are transferring a private number plate you will also need the V778 if you choose to surrender the number or have it registered to a new person.

If you are retaining your registration plate but assigning it to a new vehicle, a retention reference number will be supplied immediately on completion and can then be used to assign the private number and personalised number plates to your new vehicle through the DVLA’s online service.

Registration Plate Transfer Rules

When you’re transferring a private reg plate there are a few rules laid out by the UK Government that you must abide by.

Here are the rules to follow when transferring your registration plate:

  • You cannot assign a number plate that starts with ‘Q’ or ‘NIQ’

  • You cannot put a private number plate on a ‘Q’ registered vehicle

  • You cannot put a private plate that makes a vehicle look newer than it is

  • The vehicle must be registered with the DVLA

  • The vehicle must be able to move under its own power

  • The vehicle must have a valid MOT, or HGV certificate and be available for inspection

  • The vehicle must have been taxed or had a SORN for the past 5 years

Number Plate Transfer FAQs

Can you transfer a number plate from one car to another?

Yes, you can transfer a private registration number from one car to another. If you sell your car and want to keep your private number plate, you can transfer it from the car to keep for later.

How long does it take to transfer a number plate?

The whole process of transferring your number plate from one vehicle to another only takes a few minutes when completed on the DVLA website. 

Once you’ve filled out the correct forms, you’ll get a reference number to show that your private plate is removed from the vehicle. 

After that, you can then use this reference number to transfer the number plates to a different vehicle, which can also be done immediately on the DVLA website.

Do I need to tell my insurance if I change my number plate? 

If you transfer a new private registration plate to your vehicle you will have to inform your insurance provider. 

This is so they can keep your records up to date and ensure that your insurance policy is covering the correct vehicle.

What is a V750 Certificate of Entitlement?

A V750 Certificate of Entitlement is a piece of documentation that is used to issue brand-new registration numbers that are being used for the first time. The V750, alongside a valid MOT certificate if your vehicle is older than 3 years old  (or 1 year if it’s a heavy goods vehicle) and V5C vehicle log book.

What is a V778 Retention Document?

A V778 Retention Document allows you to retain the ownership of a private number plate and assign it to a vehicle for up to 10 years. 

All vehicles must be roadworthy, need an MOT, and taxed to have a private plate assigned.