Vehicle registration plates of the Philippines

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Vehicle license plates in the Philippines is issued and regulated by the Land Transportation Office, a government agency under the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).


2014 series (Plate standardization project)[edit]

Proposed plate standardization project for 2013 series; Plate for private and light vehicles (Top) and for Public Utility vehicles (Bottom)

In January 2013, a Land Transportation Office ventures the plate standardization project with safety features that would have bar codes, and 1981 series could become unavailable. LTO would issue new format for light motor vehicles LLL-DDDD and for motorcycles LL-DDDDD. The alphanumeric symbols for private cars will be black on a white background, while those for public utility vehicles (PUVs) would continue on black on yellow with the authorized route also to be indicated. Motorcycle plates would also be black on white, as would those for tricycles used for personal purposes. Tricycles used as PUVs would also continue with the black on yellow scheme. Government plates, meanwhile, would have sport red symbols on a white background, with the name of the agency/office to be indicated. Diplomatic plates would continue carry blue symbols on a white background, while Other Exempt Vehicles (OEV) would have black symbols on a light blue background. The new plate format series and design was originally to be scheduled on September or October 2013. [1][2][3][4] However, it has been delayed several times due to funds for releasing new plates and newly buying cars place with temporary license plates from conduction stickers. It has confirmed on February 2014, that the new plates were released on May 2014.[5]

Automobile vehicle[edit]

Pattern Class Notes
ABC-1234 Private
Private vehicle not for commercial uses (Light cars, SUV, Light truck)
PUV-1234 Public utility
Public utility vehicle (AUV, Jeepneys, Taxicabs and School Bus)
GOV-1234 Government
Cars for government official uses (Police car and Fire truck).


Pattern Class Notes
MC-12345 Private Private motorcycles
PV-12345 Public utility Public utility use for Tricycles
GV-12345 Government
Motorcycles for government official uses (Police motorcycles).

Special vehicle[edit]

Pattern Class Notes
00000 Diplomatic
Other exempted vehicles
ABC-1234 Electric Electric vehicles

1981 series[edit]

Automobile vehicle[edit]

Pattern Class Notes
ABC-123 (rear only)
Private cars or light trucks not for commercial uses.
PUV-123 (rear only)
Public utility
Public utility cars (AUV, Jeepneys, Taxicabs and School Bus)
GOV-123 (rear only)
Cars for government official uses.


Pattern Class Notes
Private Private motorcycles
Public utility Public utility use for Tricycles
Motorcycles for government official uses (Police motorcycles).

Special vehicle[edit]

Pattern Class Notes
00000 (rear only)
Other exempted vehicles
Electric Electric vehicles

Current specifications[edit]

Dimensions and medium[edit]

The current series of Philippine registration plates (Tagalog: plaka) measure 390 x 140 mm. The characters are stamped on an aluminium plate which is then applied with reflectorised paint. Previously, numerous watermarks of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) logo as well as a small logo of the plate manufacturer were stamped on the plate. This was replaced in 2003 with a reflectorised, printed colour sticker of the statue to José Rizal. As of 2008, all plates issued by the LTO are produced by a sole, privately funded manufacturer in Manila.

The slogan on the bottom of the licence plate usually reflects the goals campaign of the incumbent President. The practice began under President Fidel V. Ramos' "Philippines 2000" campaign in 1995. Until 2004, plates also bore the word "Pilipinas" at the bottom; it was replaced with the Arroyo government's slogan "Matatag Na Republika" ("Strong Republic").

  • PILIPINAS (the most common inscription; 1981–1995, 2001, 2002–2003, 2004–present)
  • PHILIPPINES 2000 (1995–2000)
  • ANGAT PINOY 2004 ("Raise Pinoy 2004"; 2000–2001)
  • PERLAS NG SILANGAN ("Pearl of the Orient";2001–2002)
  • MATATAG NA REPUBLIKA (2003-2014)


There were numerous typefaces for Philippine registration plates. The current typeface used for Philippine registration plates was first implemented in 1981. It is loosely based on the Australian license plate system. There have been slight variations on the font design since then.

Protocol/High-ranking government plates[edit]

These plates are blue D or DD plates reserved for the top government officials of the Republic of the Philippines.

Regular government plates[edit]

Red characters on a white background, LLL-DDD plates that start with the letter "S".

Government plate.
Temporary diplomatic plate, perhaps unofficial.

Diplomatic/other exempted vehicle plates[edit]

Blue characters on a white background plates reserved for diplomats, embassy and consulate officials, country ambassadors and some expatriates such as scientists and researchers at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), in the form of DDDD or DDDDD. Ambassadors' plates are always "1000" and have the country they represent at the bottom of the plate. These plates have a small decal on the bottom left part with a "CM".

1001 - 9999: a small decal on the bottom left part, displayed as "DC" for "diplomatic corps"
10000 - 25999: embassy vehicles - a small decal on the bottom left part displayed as "OEV" for "other exempted vehicle"

Public utility vehicles[edit]

Public utility plate.

Yellow plates (black characters on a yellow background) are in the form LLL DDD and usually begin with either the letter "N" or "P" or "T" or "U" in NCR. Since the current series created in 1981, they always have either "V", "W", "X", or "Y" in the middle of the letter block. Older license plates starting with "N" and "P" may have other letters in the middle of the block, although the "V" "W" "X" "Y" letters are also present (from 1981 NVA-101 to early 1995 NYZ-999).

Private vehicles[edit]

For private vehicles, the plate contains green-colored symbols on a white background with the number format as "LLL-DDD".

On newer vehicles, the first letter usually indicates the region where the vehicle is registered. For example, if the plate begins with the letter "N", the vehicle is registered in the National Capitol Region.


Yellow or green plates that mostly have either "U" (Private) or "Z" (For Hire) in the middle of the letter block.

Electric vehicles[edit]

For electric vehicles, orange plates are used (white symbols on orange background).



Private motorcycle plate.

Green characters on a white background with the letters "MC" stamped on the upper left-hand corner next to the registration sticker. Usually in the format NK 9081, but with the rise in the number of motorcycles on the road, the 9081 NK format has also come into use.

Public utility[edit]

Yellow characters on a black background. Same format as in private motorcycles. This plate is very rarely seen.



Green characters on a white background with the letters "MC" stamped on the upper left-hand corner next to the registration sticker. This is also rare because when a tricycle is purchased, its immediate use is to be a public transport vehicle and will be registered with black on yellow plates.

Public utility[edit]

Black characters on a yellow background with the letters "TC" stamped on the upper right-hand corner next to the registration sticker.

Department of Tourism accredited vehicles[edit]

Vehicles accredited by the Department of Tourism (usually tour buses and airport taxis) are issued plates that look similar to those of private vehicles, but have yellow highlights mixed with the green color and share the same first letter of current public utility vehicle plates. These vehicles must also have special stickers placed on the rear windows indicating that they are DOT-accredited.

Coding scheme[edit]

Geographical designation[edit]

  • "A" - Region I (Ilocos Region) and CAR (Cordillera Administrative Region)
  • "B" - Region II (Cagayan Valley Region)
  • "C" - Region III (Central Luzon Region), Superseded by "R" in 2003
  • "D, - Regions IV-A (CALABARZON) and IV-B (MIMAROPA), Superseded by "V" in 2000
  • "E" - Region V (Bicol Region)
  • "F" - Region VI (Western Visayas Region
  • "G" - Region VII (Central Visayas Region), Superseded by "Y" in 2004
  • "H" - Region VIII (Eastern Visayas Region)
  • "J" - Region IX (Zamboanga Peninsula) and ARMM
  • "K" - Regions X and XIII (Northern Mindanao and Caraga)
  • "L" - Region XI (Davao Region)
  • "M" - Region XII (SOCCSKSARGEN)
  • "N" - National Capital Region, 1981–1982, 2009–2010 (with increments of "I", "O", and "Q")
  • "P" - National Capital Region, 1982–1991, 2010–2011 (with increments of "I", "O", and "Q")
  • "R" - Region III (Central Luzon Region), overflow Series for Private since 2003
  • "S" - Government-owned (Red Plate) Vehicles
  • "T" - National Capital Region, 1991–1995, 2011–2012 (with increments of "I", "O", and "Q")
  • "U" - National Capital Region, 1995–1997, 2012-2013 (with increments of "I", "O", and "Q")
  • "V" - Regions IV-A (CALABARZON) and IV-B (MIMAROPA), overflow Series for Private since 2000
  • "W" - National Capital Region, 1997–2001, 2013–2014 (with increments of "I", "O", and "Q")
  • "X" - National Capital Region, 2001–2005, 2014 (with increment of "I" before the release of 2014 series; see above)
  • "Y" - Region VII (Central Visayas Region), overflow series for Private since 2004
  • "Z" - National Capital Region, 2005–2009

New Geographical designation[edit]

Year 2014 and onwards plate number letters are all the same throughout the Philippines in a series and combination, since the region where it is registered is now displayed in the new license plates at the bottom part.

Plate Numbers in National Capital Region[edit]

Private (plate series with approximate year issued):

1981 NA, NB, NC, ND, NE, NF, NG, NH, NJ, NK, NL, NM, NN, NP, NR, NS
1982 NT, PA
1983 PB, PC, PD
1984 PE, PF
1985 PG
1986 PH
1987 PJ
1988 PK, PL
1989 PM, PN, PP
1990 PR, PS, PT
1991 TA, TB, TC
1992 TD, TE, TF
1993 TG, TH, TJ, TK, TL
1994 TM, TN, TP, TR, TT
1995 UA(A-B), TS, UA(C-onwards), UB, UC, UD, UE
1996 UF, UG, UH, UJ, UK, UL, UM, UN
1997 UP, UR, US, UT, UU, WA, WB
1998 WC, WD, WE, WF
1999 WG, WH, WJ, WK, WL
2000 WM, WN, WP, WR
2001 WS, WT, XA, XB
2002 XC, XD, XE, XF, XG
2003 XH, XJ, XK, XL, XM
2004 XN, XP, XR, XS
2005 XT, ZA, ZB, ZC
2006 ZD, ZE, ZF, ZG
2007 ZH, ZJ, ZK, ZL
2008 ZM, ZN, ZP, ZR, ZS
2009 ZT, N-(I), N-(O), N-(Q), NI
2010 NO, NQ, P-(I), P-(O), P-(Q), PI
2011 PO, PQ, T-(I), T-(O), T-(Q), TI
2012 TO, TQ, UI, U-(I), UO
2013 UQ, U-(O), U-(Q), W-(I), W-(O), W-(Q)
2014 WI, WO, WQ; AAA, AAI, AAJ, AAK, AAM (new plate series)

I, O and Q are previously not used to avoid confusion with the numbers "1" & "0". But with the exhaustion of the "Z" series in 2009, they are already used by reverting to the old "N" series. A new serial scheme is implemented using these characters, instead of the third letter coming into series (e.g. after ZAA-999 has been reached, ZAB-101) the middle letter is the one being replaced (e.g. after NAI-999 series has been exhausted, NBI-101 will follow). After all the possible combinations with I, O and Q as third letter for the same starting letter have been used, I, O and Q are used as middle letters and the third letter is being replaced (e.g. After NZQ-999 has been used, NIA-101 will follow), if the reverted letter is exhausted (e.g. After PQZ-999 has been used, TAI-101 will follow)
e.g. NUI-205, NOR-686, NIA-101, NQZ-544, PXI-296, PQQ-332, POC-902, PQL-497, TZO-390, TIQ-486, TOL-979, TQH-924, UIP-207, UMI-615, UOG-874, UOS-648, UQF-281, UQO 289, UFO-392, UDQ-800, WAI-365, WOO-911, WEQ-451, WIC-143, WOP-723, WQL-851, AAJ-8557

Provincial Plate Numbers[edit]

Private (plate series with approximate year issued)::

  • "1980's"
Region I/CAR AA, AB, AC(A-N)
Region II BA, BB(A-N)
Region III CA, CB, CC, CD, CE, CF, CG, CH, CJ(A-E)
Region IV DA, DB, DC, DD, DE, DF, DG(A-V)
Region V EA(A-U)
Region VI FA, FB, FC(A-S)
Region VII GA, GB, GC, GD(A-D)
Region VIII HA(A-M)
Region X/XIII KA, KB
Region XI LA, LB, LC(A-E)
Region XII MA(A-W)
  • "1990s"
Region I/CAR AC(P-onwards), AD, AE
Region II BB(P-onwards), BC
Region III CJ(F-onwards), CK, CL, CM, CN, CP, CR(A-E)
Region IV DG(W-Z), DH, DJ, DK, DL, DM, DN, DP, DR, DS, DT
Region V EA(V-Z), EB, EC
Region VI FC(T-onwards), FD, FE
Region VII GD(E-onwards), GE, GF, GG, GH, GJ, GK
Region VIII HA(P-onwards), HB
Region IX/ARMM JA(W-Z), JB
Region X/XIII KB(M-onwards), KC
Region XI LC(F-onwards), LD
Region XII MA(X-Z), MB
  • "2000s"
Region I/CAR AE, AF(A-D)
Region II BC, BD, BE
Region III CR(F-onwards), CS, CT, RA, RB, RC, RD, RE, RF, RG, RH, RJ
Region IV VA, VB, VC, VD, VE(A-E)
Region V EC, ED
Region VI FE, FF, FG(A-M)
Region VII GL, GM, GP, GR, GS, GT, YA, YB, YC, YD, YE, YF, YG, YH
Region VIII HB, HC
Region X/XIII KC, KD, KE
Region XI LD, LE, LF, LG, LH, LJ
Region XII MB, MC, MD, ME
  • "2010 - Present"
Region I/CAR AF(E-onwards)
Region II BE
Region III RK, RL, RM, RN
Region IV VE(F-onwards), VF
Region V ED
Region VI FG(N-onwards), FH, FJ
Region VII YH, YJ, YK, YL, YM
Region VIII HC, HD
Region X/XIII KE, KF, KG
Region XI LJ, LK, LL, LM, LN
Region XII ME, MF, MG

Government Plate Numbers[edit]

1980s SA, SB, SC
1990s SC, SD, SE, SF (A-D)
2000s SF (F-onwards), SG, SH, SJ (A-E)
2010 - present SJ (E-onwards), SK, SL

Motorcycle plate numbers - MC(NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION)[edit]


  • "1980's" - NA, NB, NC, ND, NE, NF, NG, NH, NJ, NK, NL, NM, NN, NP
  • "early 1990s" - NR, NS, NT, NU, PA, PB, PC, PD, PE, PF, PG, PH, TA, TB, TC,
  • "mid to late 1990s" - PJ, PK, PL, PM, PN, PP, PR, PS, PT, PU, RD, TE, TF, TG, TH, TJ, TK, TL, TM, TN, TP, TR, TS, TT, TU
  • "2000 - 2005" - UA, UB, UC, UD, UE, OF, UG, UH, UI, UJ, UK, UL, UM, UN, UP, UQ, UR, US, UT, UU, WA, WB, WC, WD, WE, WF, WG, WH, WI, WJ, WK, WL, WM, WN, WO, XI, XO, XQ
  • "2006" - ZA, ZB, ZC, ZD, ZE, ZF, ZG, ZH, ZJ, ZK, ZL, ZM, ZN, ZP, ZR, ZS, ZT
  • Inverted plates (Provincial): DA, DB, DC, DD, DE, DF, as same a "C"
  • Metro Manila : NA up to NH
  • "2007" - Inverted motorcycle plates - NI to NU, DG TO DI
  • "2008" - PA to PL, DJ to DR
  • "2009" - PM to PU, DS to DU, WA to WC
  • "2010" - TA to TU, UA to present, WD to present

Motor Tricycle(TC)

  • "1980's" - NV, NW, NX, NY, NZ, DV, DW, DX, DY, DZ, CV, CW, CX, CY, CZ
  • "early 1990s" - PV, PW, TV, VV, VW, VX, VY, VZ
  • "MID 1990s" - PX, TW, TY, TZ, VZ, VU
  • "late 1990s" - PY, PZ, VT, VS, VR, VP, VN, VM, VL, VK
  • "2000 - 2005" - XA, XB, XC, XD, XE, XF, XG, WP, WR, WS, UV, UW, UX, UY, UZ
  • "2006" - WU, XH, XJ, XK, XL, XM, XN
  • "2007" - WV, WW, XP, XR, XS, XT, XU
  • "2008" - WX, WY, WZ, XV, XW, XX, XY, XZ
  • "2009" - QA to QZ (including QI, QO, QQ & QU)

Inverted Motor Tricycle licensed plates(TC)

  • "2010" - DV, CV, CW
  • "2011" - DW, DX, CX, CY, CZ
  • "2012" - DY, NV
  • "2013" - NW

Special designation[edit]

  • "S" - Government
  • "Q" - Public Utility Motorized Tricycles
  • "O", "I" - Private Motorcycles
  • "N", "P", "T", "U" - Public utility vehicles (they usually begin with these letters but not always). They always (since 1995- PVA 101) have "V", "W", "X", or "Y" in the middle of the letter block (LLL).

e.g. PWM 757

  • "AW" has been used for public utility vehicles in the middle of 2014.

e.g. AWD 401

Personalized plates[edit]

A motorist who would like to have personalized plates can have any letter combination he fancies upon three conditions:

  1. It is unique i.e., the plate does not have a registered duplicate anywhere else in the Philippines.
  2. The plate should not have the same format as government vehicles.
  3. The motorist can afford to pay its PHP 25,000 ($500+) price tag.

[6] [7] [8] [9]

Optional motor vehicle special plates (OMVSP)[edit]

A project of the Land Transportation Office since 2004, these plates are in the form of LLL DD. e.g. FPJ-22