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Read This Guide Before Getting Your Car's Number Plates

By Juhi Walia
26 September 2022, 12:55 PM

People looking to customise the number plates of their cars should know that the styling comes with regulations. The number plate that is not clearly visible invites heavy fines from police officials. Sometimes these cars will be captured in the RTO cameras and will be fined for not complying with the guidelines laid down by the RTO for number plates.

This type of crime is punishable, and there is no way you can get out of it. So, if you want fancy plates, you need to follow some regulations and choose the number plate that meets design requirements and makes you comply with rules.

We have compiled all the information about number plates, fines, and car insurance policies that offer some claims against liability that could come in handy. Check out this guide suggesting the necessary steps for new car buyers interested in getting fancy number plates.

What is a Fancy Number Plate?

Before diving in too deep, it is necessary to understand the meaning of a fancy number plate. Simply put, the number plate with non-readable fonts or design that covers the numbers or both is considered a fancy number plate.

Such number plates include everything from designs and pictures to characters or names. As such, number plates that are not readable from a distance are fined by the police.

What is Not a Fancy Number Plate?

A fancy number for your car is not considered a fancy number plate. Getting a number of your choice for your vehicle is perfectly legal. 

You can register with the Ministry of Road and Transport as a public user and select the number of your choice. Once you pay the registration fees and the number plate cost, you are legally eligible to get such a number plate if you are willing to pay a hefty price.

What is the Fine for Fancy Number Plates?

As per the Central Motor Vehicles Rules of India, Sections 51 and 177, car owners with number plates not according to the government guidelines will be fined INR 1000. This charge may change according to the region. No type of insurance can protect your car from such fines. So, follow all the legal guidelines and get a simple and visible number plate for your vehicle. 

What are the Government Guidelines on Number Plates?

The government has prescribed number-plate specific guidelines on various usages of a car. Conforming to the guidelines mentioned below protects you from fines:

  • For private vehicles, it should have a white background and black font.
  • It should have a yellow background and red font for temporarily registered cars.
  • Any commercial vehicle should have a yellow background and black fonts.
  • For rental cars, it should have a yellow background with black font.

You should choose the correct number plates depending on your vehicle usage. 

How to Get a Number Plate for Your Car?

The following steps outline the process for obtaining a number plate: 

  • When you purchase a new car, the car dealer will take it for the initial registration. This will be a temporary registration and will be eligible for a month.
  • You will receive a permanent registration number towards the end of the month of registration or at the beginning of next month.
  • After this, you can go to the RTO and purchase a number plate with your permanent registration number. Get two number plates, one for the front and the back. While getting a number plate, check the background colour and font of the number plate, as mentioned above.

If you are looking to customise your number plate, you need to ensure that it will still be visible from a distance.

Is Car Insurance Available on Number Plates?

Car insurance can assist when your old number plate has been damaged in an accident. It can also help cancel your vehicle registration number in case of theft, so your number plate is not misused. But car insurance cannot insure a fancy number plate as it goes against the land law.

Expert's Advice on the Matter

Getting a fancy number plate is not ideal as it gives you more liability than benefits. This means that if you are just getting a fancy number plate added for trend or fashion, a police officer is bound to stop you at the traffic signal.

This will then cost you a huge that could have been otherwise saved. 


You cannot get a fancy number plate without getting fined. The only way is to choose minimalistic designs that make the numbers visible. There is no car insurance for this. So, each time you are in the line of sight of the police, you will be fined. Instead of committing a felony, choose the right number plate for your car.

Make sure that if you make any changes to your number plate, they are for a genuine reason, not for trends. This will be a regret later, and meanwhile, you will be charged a hefty amount because it is illegal to have unclear, decorative, numbered designs, or any such graphically fancy number plates. 

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1. Can I get a fancy number for my car?

Yes. A fancy number plate and a fancy number are two different things. You can get a fancy number for your car as it is not a fine-worthy offence, as per the Government of India. 

2. Are names or pictures on number plates against the law?

Yes, they are illegal. You cannot add names or pictures on a number plate. Anything that does not allow a straightforward reading of your vehicle's number is considered illegal as per Government rules, and it is advisable not to do it. 

3. Can one car have two number plates?

No. It is illegal for one car to have two number plates. It is considered a fraudulent act and is regarded as a punishable offence. This is because many fraudulent and illegal activities are carried out under illegal or lost number plates. You will be considered fraud if you use two number plates for one vehicle. You will then need to pay a hefty fine or punishment. 

4. Is using 3D number plates illegal?

Yes. The government has banned using 3D/4D number plates on vehicles. 

5. Can I use gel number plates on my car?

Gel number plates adhere to the Motor Vehicles Act of India. It is, therefore, perfectly legal to use gel number plates.

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