In Idaho, you have 30 days to register a new vehicle and 90 days to register an out-of-state vehicle.
Every resident in Idaho must register their vehicles with the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
If you’re new to the state, you have 90 days to find a DMV and change your out-of-state plates to a new set of Idaho license plates.
If you are purchasing a new vehicle, you have 30 days to register it. Buying from a car dealership performs the registration process on your behalf. Buying from a private seller, however, requires temporary plates to drive legally after the sale.
You can contact the DMV for temporary plates if you are considering a car from a private sale.
You will register your vehicle at the DMV and submit the appropriate paperwork and payment.
Please bring the following with you to register your vehicle:
When you’re applying for your license plates, you’ll have the choice of standard, personalized, or specialized license plates.
You might be familiar with the red, white, and blue background of the standard plates, with “Scenic Idaho” and “Famous Potatoes” written across them.
This is the type of license plate you will receive when registering your vehicle in Idaho.
You will be required to place this license plate on the rear of your vehicle, and the registration sticker must be visible in the bottom right corner. You may also require an additional license plate for the front, depending on the vehicle (i.e., cars, vans, and trucks).
Personalizing your license plates allows you to add a custom phrase or set of characters to the plate. You can use 4 to 7 characters for your custom plates, and you can use any combination of letters, numbers, and spaces—with a few exceptions:
You must create a unique plate number in order for your application to be accepted and processed.
You can order personalized plates online, by mail, or by visiting a DMV office in person.
There are many clever and beautifully designed license plates representing organizations, charities, and other causes. These license plates may have eligibility criteria or require a special donation before you can receive them for your car.
The following is a brief list of custom license plates available in Idaho:
You do not have to pay for these specialized plates until your application has been approved. If approved, you have to pay the fees associated with that plate as well as the additional renewal rates.
When you make a payment for your license plates or vehicle’s registration, you can make payments to or at the DMV using:
When you register your vehicle, you can get the basic package, which keeps your vehicle valid for 1 year. Here is an overview of the fees for your first year with a registered Idaho vehicle:
Note: You may also be responsible to pay service fees, local taxes, and other fees related to your registration and renewal.
In Idaho, you are not required to contact the police if you suspect that your license plates have been stolen.
If this happens to you, you can apply for replacements at the DMV office nearest you.
If you no longer need your license plates, you can surrender them to a DMV office in Idaho. If you can’t go to the office in person, you can also mail them in.
When you register your vehicle, the license plates assigned to you become your property. If you sell, donate, or trade your vehicle, your plates can be transferred to your next vehicle.
If you own a classic car with an antique license plate, you may be required to transfer this license plate along to the new owner.
Here you can search for any license plate in Idaho or other states across America. You can use this search tool to find available license plates to personalize yours.
FindByPlate also lets you look up reports for different vehicles. Try it—all you need is the license plate number and the state it comes from to obtain results.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to look up Idaho License Plates and report bad drivers: