You can apply to take a private (personalised) number off a vehicle to:

  • transfer it to another vehicle
  • hold on to it until you want to use it again

You can use this service if your vehicle:

  • is registered with DVLA
  • can move under its own power
  • has been taxed for the last 5 years without any gaps (or a SORN has been in place for that time)
  • is a type that needs an MOT or heavy goods vehicle (HGV) test certificate

You might need to take your vehicle to DVLA for an inspection. You’ll be told if you need to do this.

Your private number will be removed straight away if you apply online.

It costs £80.

This service is available from 7am to 7pm.

This service is also available in Welsh (Cymraeg).

Start now

You’ll need:

‘Q’ registration numbers

You cannot retain a registration number starting with ‘Q’ or ‘NIQ’.

After you apply

The private number will be retained in the name of the registered keeper. You’ll need to remove the number before you sell or destroy the vehicle, or you’ll lose the right to use it.

The original registration number will usually be reassigned to the vehicle when you remove the private number.

Send the following documents to the DVLA:

If you need to tax your vehicle at the same time, send:

The address to send all your documents is on the V317.

What happens next

DVLA will contact you to arrange an appointment if your vehicle needs to be inspected. Otherwise, your application will be approved in 2 weeks.

You’ll be sent:

  • a V778 retention document showing you as the ‘grantee’
  • a registration certificate showing the replacement registration number

You’ll lose the right to use the number if you sell or destroy your vehicle before you get the V778.

These should arrive within 4 weeks of getting the confirmation letter. It can take up to 6 weeks if you use a V62 application to support your application.

If you retain the registration number in someone else’s name, the retention document will be sent to them, as they are recorded as the grantee.

More information

Contact DVLA for more information about taking a personalised registration number off a vehicle.