What to Do with Old License Plates Arizona

You searched “what to do with old license plates Arizona” or a similar term about whether to keep your plates or not. The simple answer is that you can keep your old Arizona license plate. However, some exceptions apply. Keep reading to learn even more, including how you can utilize your AZ license plate valuably.

what to do with old license plates Arizona

If you just gifted, traded in, sold your vehicle, or upgraded to a personalized or specialty plate in Arizona, you want to get rid of or handle your registration plate properly to avoid becoming responsible for fines you know nothing about. For instance, the new owner of the car can rack parking tickets in your name with the license plate traceable to you. You don’t want this happening, do you?


Do you have to return license plates in AZ?

No, you don’t have to return old license plates in AZ according to Arizona MVD. If your license Arizona license plate is somehow considered collectible or personalized, you can still keep it. The only exception when you have to return your AZ license plate is if it is mutilated or illegible while your vehicle is still road-active, and AZ law requires you to obtain a replacement license plate.

AZ does not take back plain old plates with letters and numbers that only show your registration while you still actively used your car. Your old plate is now expired, and means nothing to AZ—you can use it for other purposes.


You can do a lot with your old Arizona plate, including putting it in your Will. Perhaps, your heirs will welcome the idea to a point where your child contests the Will if excluded. However, it’s quite unrealistic that you would want to do such a thing because your heirs may think you lost it all at your old age to Will them an AZ plate.

It is smarter to save your gasoline and time from going to the AZ DMV, except you feel it’s entertaining to queue up with others who have better reasons for being on the queue. Even Arizona MVD advises you not to return your nearly useless plate.

What to Do with Old License Plates Arizona

Your Arizona license plate could be lovely and not needed by the state again, but that does not make it entirely useless. Instead of inconveniencing AZ MVD who already have new plates looking for owners, below is what to do with your old license plate in Arizona:

  1. Abandon It in Your Recycling Bin

how to dispose of license plates arizona

It is understandable how much love you have for your license plate, but it’s time to toss it in the recycling bin.


AZ MVD urges you to put your license plate in their recycling bin instead of leaving it in the trash. Make sure to cut the plate into pieces to prevent another person from illegally using it.

  1. Transfer the Plate to Your New Car

What do you do with old license plates in Arizona

You can transfer your current license plate when you buy a different vehicle. If it is the standard plate, you may not bother keeping it since you won’t like it anyway.

  1. Sell Your AZ Plates

Can you use old license plates in Arizona

There is a market for your Arizona plate on eBay, Craigslist, Etsy, etc. The value of your license plate could go up if it’s antique.

  1. Garage Decor

What do I do with my old license plate Arizona

You can hang your old AZ plates on your garage wall. It makes a beautiful sight and reminds you of the old memory of driving around in that registration number on your vehicle.

  1. Souvenir

can i use my old license plate on my new car in az

Your AZ license plate makes a decent souvenir instead of wasting your time and energy in the AZ MVD queue just to bore the official. If it does not make a souvenir enough for you, you can Will it to your loved one.

  1. Give it to the Antique for Cash

what to do with old az license plates

No need to surrender your Arizona plate. Make money with your plate by selling it to the antique shop.

  1. Gift It

Do license plates stay with the car in Arizona

Gifting your AZ plate can be remarkable depending on the recipient or occasion of the gift. The average vehicle enthusiast would be pleased to have an AZ license plate hanging on their garage wall.


When can you surrender your license plate in Arizona?

You can surrender your Arizona license plate if it is mutilated or illegible. Get it off your car and request a new license plate.

Why does AZ not take back old license plates?

Arizona MVD does not take back old license plates so that you can save your time out of a busy day and not bore the officials with unnecessary crowd.

Can I use my old license plate on my new car in AZ?

Yes, you can transfer your current Arizona plate to your new car.

What if you return your old plate to the AZ MVD?

If you return your old Arizona plate to the AZ MVD, they will still take it from you, but will only recycle it. AZ MVD would welcome your visit but it is better to avoid waiting in line over something you can complete from your home.

Final Thoughts

When you sell your motor vehicle, do not give your license plates to the buyer. Advise them to obtain the temporary tag and drive/ride home the used motorcycle or vehicle.

Never give your old CA plates to anyone once you no longer possess a motor vehicle. They can pack tickets and parking citations in your name. Some might try to make your number plate invisible to ticket camera to get away with being fined in your name. Moreover, if they were involved in an accident, you would be dragged into the cost, except you prove with your bill of sale and old title that you sold the car.

Meanwhile, do you keep your license plate in California?

Yes, your AZ license plate is still valuable but meaningless in the eyes of the AZ MVD, except it is still active and is mutilated.

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