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License Plate Gallery

License Plate Sticker Colours, Part 2: 1979-1998

Over half the jurisdictions in the U.S. and Canada were issuing multi-year baseplates and plate stickers by 1970. By 1982, all states and provinces were following suit...aside from New York and New Jersey, which used windshield stickers instead.

Colorado and Arizona began issuing distinctive stickers to vehicles requiring emissions tests in 1982 and 1988, respectively. Another trend that exploded in this era was the perpetuation of registration systems with expirations staggered throughout the year, described in more depth here. Stickers indicating years of issue and primary use (as opposed to dates of expiration) are noted in italics.

Canada
< British Columbia Cars/Trucks - 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96a 97 98 >
Motorcycles
Alberta 79 80 81 82 83 84b 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Saskatchewan 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Manitoba 79 80 81 82 - 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Ontario Jan-Mar 79 80 81 82 - 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< Apr-Jun 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Jul-Sep 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Oct-Dec 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Quebec - 80c 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 Discontinued
New Brunswick 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 - 88 89 90d 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Nova Scotia 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86e 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< Prince Edward Island 79 80 - 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Newfoundland 79 80 81 82f 83f 84f 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Yukon Territory - 81 82 - 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Northwest Territories - 80 - 82 - 84 85 86 - 88 89 90g 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98

a Later examples of British Columbia '96 stickers were pink on white:

96

b Three different colours of Alberta '84 stickers were issued, depending on the expiration and use:

All registrations (exp. Mar) 84
Extended registrations (exp. Jun) 84
Staggered registrations (exp. Oct-Dec) 84

c Quebec '80 stickers used on motorcycles were red on white:

80

d New Brunswick '90 stickers beyond 03/90 were white on green:

90

e Nova Scotia '86 stickers expiring in December for pre-1979 and non-passenger plates had reversed colours.

f Newfoundland's '82-'84 stickers were bi-Coloured, with different colours for expiration months:

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

g Northwest Territories '90 stickers beyond March were pink on white:

90

United States
< Alabama Cars 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Trucks 79
Alaska 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Arizona Emission 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Non-emission 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
ArkansasCars 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< Motorcycles - 80 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 >
California 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Colorado Emission 79a 80a 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Non-emission 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Connecticut 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97b 98
Delaware Combined month-year stickers in various colours.
< District of Columbia 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Florida 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Georgia 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 - 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Hawaii 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
IdahoCars 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Motorcycles 79 80 81
< Illinois 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Indiana Annual plates 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 - 92 93 - 95 96 97 98
Iowa - 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97c 98
KansasCars 79 80 - 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Trucks/MCs 79 - 81 82 83
Kentucky Cars/Trucks 79 80 81d 82d 83e 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< Motorcycles Annual plates 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 91 92 93 94 95 96 >
LouisianaCars 79 80 81 Colours vary. 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Trucks/MCs 97 98
Maine Cars/Trucks Colours vary. 87f 88f 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Motorcycles 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88
Maryland 79 80 - 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
86g 91h 92h 93h 94h 95h
< Massachusetts 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91i 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Michigan - 80 81 82 83 - 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Minnesota 79 80 81 82 83j 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Mississippi 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Missouri Annual plates 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 -
MontanaCars/Trucks 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87k 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< Motorcycles 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 - 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Nebraska 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Nevada 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
New HampshireCars/Trucks 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Motorcycles 80
New Jersey (motorcycles) 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92l 93 94 95 96 97 98
< New Mexico 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
New York (motorcycles) 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
North Carolina 79 80 81 82 83 84m 85m 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
North DakotaJan-Nov 79 - 81 82 83 - 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Dec 84 85 86 87 89 90n 91n 92n 93
OhioApr (78-79) 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< May (78-79) 79 89g >
OklahomaCars - 80 - 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Trucks/MCs 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87
Special - 83 84 85 86 87 88 ? 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Oregon 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Pennsylvania 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Rhode Island 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< South Carolina 79 80 - 82 83 84 85 - 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
South Dakota Regular 79 80 - 82 83 84 85 86 - 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Special 81o 91 92 93 94 95 97 98
TennesseeCars 79 80 81 82 83 - 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Motorcycles Annual plates through 1983. 85 86 87 88 - 91 92 93 94 -
Texas 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95p 96p 97p 98p
< Utah 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91q 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Vermont 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Virginia 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
WashingtonCars/Trucks 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Motorcycles Colours vary.
West Virginia 78r 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
< WisconsinCars 79 - 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 >
Trucks 79s 80 - 82 83 84t 85 86 87 -
Motorcycles - 82 - 84 85 86 87 88 - - 92 - -
Wyoming 79 80 81 82 - 84 85 86 87 - 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98

a Colorado '79 and '80 stickers expiring in December had different colour schemes:

79 80

b Some examples of Connecticut '97 stickers were white on magenta:

97

c Some examples of these stickers were white on black.

d Kentucky '81 and '82 stickers issued to trucks had different colour schemes:

81 82

e Kentucky '83 stickers issued to trucks or used on the 1983 baseplate were white on green:

83

f Used on the graphic "lobster" baseplate only.

g Later examples only.

h Used on the optional "Treasure the Chesapeake" baseplate.

i Later examples of Massachusetts '91 stickers issued to trucks and other non-passenger vehicles were black on red:

91

j Some examples of Minnesota '83 stickers were blue on white:

83

k Some Montana '87 stickers used on the optional Centennial plate were blue on white:

87

l Later examples of New Jersey '92 stickers were black on blue:

92

m Some North Carolina '84-'85 stickers were created by covering obsolete stickers with a black on white strip overlay.

n Some North Dakota stickers expiring in December of these years had different colour schemes. The reason for this is unknown:

90 91 92

o Issued to trailers only.

p Issued to motorcycles only. Passenger cars issued windshield stickers instead.

q Later examples of Utah '91 stickers were white on green:

91

r Dated with year of issue, not expiration.

s Wisconsin '79 stickers were actually issued to light trucks in three colour schemes:

Initial registrations, up to 5000 lb: 79
Initial registrations, 5001-8000 lb: 79
Late new registrations, all weights: 79

t Later examples of Wisconsin '84 stickers issued to trucks were black on yellow:

84
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Last update 5 December 2018.