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09. 11. 2023
Moving to Germany and planning to bring your vehicle with you? Understanding the intricacies of the German car registration system is essential. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through each step of registering your car in Germany, from scheduling an appointment to acquiring German number plates.
Before delving into the specifics, let’s begin with a brief overview of how the German car registration system works.
The German car registration process begins with reserving an appointment at a vehicle registration center in your district.
Before you head to the registration center, ensure you have all the necessary documents in order. These include:
For those who might need to import or export a vehicle, here’s what you need to know:
Once your vehicle is successfully registered, you can proceed to an Autokennzeichen branch or contact an online specialist to print your German license plates. After obtaining the plates, it’s imperative to return to the registration office to receive the official seal of your German district. This seal is not just a formality; it signifies the completion of the registration process.
Let’s break down the expenses involved in registering your vehicle in Germany:
German license plates follow a specific format and design. They are white with black characters, usually made from aluminum. The standard dimensions for car license plates in Germany, as in most of Europe, are 520 mm x 110 mm (20.5 inches x 4.3 inches). This standard size also applies to trucks, buses, and trailers.
To signify its membership in the European Union, German registration plates display the EU flag on the left side. This blue strip is adorned with 12 yellow stars forming a circle. Alongside the EU flag, you’ll find the letter ‘D,’ signifying Germany’s international vehicle registration code.
The registration number on German plates follows the format ‘AAA BBCCCC,’ where ‘AA’ represents the area code indicating the German district of registration. This code can consist of one, two, or three characters, depending on the district. The ‘BBCCCC’ section is a serial code comprising one or two letters (‘BB’) and one, two, three, or four numbers (‘CCCC’). This code ranges from A1 to ZZ9999, providing a vast array of combinations.
German license plates feature a pair of stickers: a registration sticker that validates the plate and a safety test sticker indicating the vehicle’s roadworthiness. Front plates have the registration sticker, while rear plates have both stickers. The safety sticker is placed above the registration sticker, between the Area code and the serial code.
Special German license plates are reserved for specific categories, including government officials, military vehicles, ambulances, and diplomatic vehicles. For instance, the President and Chancellor have license plate numbers ‘0-1’ and ‘0-2,’ respectively. Additionally, cars belonging to car dealers sport red characters instead of the standard black.
While customization options are limited, you can modify the 6-digit serial code of your German license plate for a personal touch. Keep in mind that reservations for custom numbers may incur an additional fee of €10 to €15. This allows you to add a unique touch to your vehicle while adhering to German regulations.
Registering your car in Germany might seem like a complex process, but with the right information and preparation, it can be a manageable task. This comprehensive guide has covered every aspect of the German car registration system, from the initial appointment to the acquisition of your German number plates. Armed with this knowledge, you can confidently navigate the German car registration process and enjoy a smooth transition to life on German roads.
Ready to make your car registration in Germany hassle-free? Order your Certificate of Conformity (COC) through EUROCOC now and experience a seamless journey to getting your German number plates. Take the first step toward stress-free driving – place your order today!