Newfoundland & Labrador License Plates 1969-present

NL 69 #26-008
Newfoundland and Labrador 1969 passenger issue. The 1969 issue celebrates the Churchill River in Labrador, which supplies power to much of the province. The lightning bolts at the bottom of the plate signify hydroelectric power. Newfoundland plates of this era were issued in an all numeric format. This was the last yearly issue for Newfoundland and Labrador.
NL 72 #118-696
Newfoundland and Labrador 1972 passenger issue (1970 base). This new base was introduced at the end of 1969 and was valid through 1970 without stickers. The plates were then validated through the end of 1972 with stickers. Plates were again issued in an all-numeric format, with this being one of the higher numbered plates.
NL 75 #161-935
Newfoundland and Labrador 1975 passenger issue (1973 base). These new plates were issued at the end of 1972 and used without stickers in 1973, then with stickers through the end of 1975. Sticker boxes were added at the bottom corners. Again, this was a later period plate on this base and has a relatively high serial for the time period (the province averaged around 100,000 passenger vehicles during this period, and still has a fairly low number of registrations.)
NL 77 #3-992
Newfoundland and Labrador 1977 passenger issue (1976 base). These blue on orange plates were used from 1976 through the end of 1981. They followed the same format as the 1973 issue aside from the colors. This was the last issue for the province to use an all-numeric serial.
NL 83 #AAQ-076
Newfoundland and Labrador 1983 passenger issue. This new baseplate was introduced in 1982. It is a complex plate in that it uses two different colors on embossed characters, so the manufacturing process was more difficult than traditional one-color plates. This base started an ABC-123 format that is still in use in the province today. These plates were issued through 1993 and remain valid today with proper stickers. Several die variations exist on this base, with this initial style produced by Waldale, Ltd. in Nova Scotia, from the AAA series through the end of the AKC series.
NL 87 #AKH-942
Newfoundland and Labrador 1987 passenger issue. Plates in the AKD-AKO series were produced in Newfoundland by a different vendor, using serial dies that are similar to the earlier ones on this base, but slightly taller and perhaps a little more rounded. The "W" in Newfoundland is a good way of telling the earlier plates from these issues if you don't have a ruler handy to measure the serial dies.
NL 88 #AKT 508
Newfoundland and Labrador 1988 passenger issue. This plate came from a series produced in Quebec using the same dies found on late-1970s era Quebec plates. Quebec-made plates ran from around the AKP series to the end of the ALB series. Early plates of this run, AKP 001 through AKV 400, were erroneously produced without the dash separator between the letters and numbers. This plate also features the yellow "Dealer Temp" sticker, which allows motorists to operate the vehicle between the time that it is purchased and the time that they are able to register it. The stickers were undated at this time, allowing for potential fraudulent "extended" use. Current Dealer Temp stickers are dated to discourage this.
NL 88 #ALB 163
Newfoundland and Labrador 1988 passenger issue. Another of the Quebec-made variety, this plate is an example of the corrected version with the dash placed between the letters and numbers. Plates of this type were issued from the plate number AKV-401 through the end of this ALB series.
NL 89 #ALR-239
Newfoundland and Labrador 1989 passenger issue. Following the Quebec-made varieties, plate production was shifted back into Newfoundland for the remainder of the ALx series (starting at ALD-001) through at least the end of the AMB series. These plates are identical to the ones issued in the AKD-AKO series prior to the Quebec-made plates.
NL 89 #AMH-887
Newfoundland and Labrador 1989 passenger issue. Likely starting with plate number AMC-251 (based on ordering information from the province), the contract to produce Newfoundland plates was once again awarded to Waldale, Ltd. in Nova Scotia. This resulted in a plate design using the same dies as earlier Waldale-made issues but more squared-off on the edges and slightly larger than 12" by 6". This style ran through the end of the ANZ series.
NL 90 #AOA-469
Newfoundland and Labrador 1990 passenger issue. Another die set on this base. Plates starting in the AOA series were still produced by Waldale, but this time using the same dies found on the Nova Scotia Bluenose baseplate, introduced at around the same time. This variety lasted through the end of the APC series, at which point the contract for plates was apparently given to another supplier.
NL 94 #ASG-971
Newfoundland and Labrador 1994 passenger issue. Another contract, another die variety. I believe these plates starting with APD and running through the ASx series were produced in Newfoundland, using these narrow dies and blocky, tightly-spaced characters for the province name. These plates use the same dies as earlier Newfoundland-made plates in the AKx and ALx-AMx series in the late 1980s, but with more squared off corners. Picky, eh?
NL 95 #ATT 239
Newfoundland and Labrador 1995 passenger issue. These new graphic plates featuring a Viking ship and the slogan "A World of Difference" were first issued in 1993. The serial continued from where the 1982 base left off at ATA-001. Since it took over 12 years to get from AAA to ATA, you can see how few registrations there are in the province. This remained the current base (through several manufacturer changes and die varieties) through late 2001. This original variety of plate (ATA through AWG series) was produced by Waldale using the "Bluenose" dies again.
NL 97 #AWP 378
Newfoundland and Labrador 1997 passenger issue. Continuation of the "World of Difference" plate. The contract for producing these plates was awarded to HiSigns in Alberta in 1996, resulting in plates from approximately the "AWH" series through the AZF or AZG series carrying these different dies. This same die set is found on many Alberta "Wild Rose Country" plates, also produced by HiSigns.
NL 96/97 #HAF 001
Newfoundland and Labrador 1996/97 passenger issue. This special issue plate was released in September, 1996 and issued for a limited run of 15,000 plates. The series started with HAB 001 to avoid conllicts with other vehicle class categories ("H" was the next available unused letter in the series). These plates were made by Astrographics Industries of British Columbia, and the dies used on the plates are the same as found on BC plates of the same timeframe. These plates commemorate explorer John Cabot's 1497 voyage to what is now Newfoundland, thought to be the first European contact with the area (Cabot was Italian but sailing for England at the time of the voyage). I expect that this is the earliest event to ever be commemorated on a license plate. This particular plate is odd in that the initial expiration is in October 1996. This means that the owner must have liked the new plate so much that they went in and turned in their existing October 1996 plates in September 1996, received a new plate that was good until the next month, then re-validated it in October 1996 with a 1997 sticker. Kind of strange, but sounds like something I'd probably do myself.
NL 97 #HAF 889
Newfoundland and Labrador 1997 passenger issue. Another Cabot issue, this plate used the other prevalent set of BC-style dies. Both this die set and the shorter dies seen above were used by Astrographics when producing these plates. There doesn't seem to be a pattern for the die changes, as there are many cases such as these two "HAF" plates where the different die sets were used within the same letter series.
NL 98 #AZH 699
Newfoundland and Labrador 1998 passenger issue. The Viking ship plate was put on hold for about a year while the Cabot plate was being issued, but in late 1997, the province reverted back to this plate. Plates from the AZG series through the end of the A series (AZZ-999) were once again produced by Waldale and went back to these Nova Scotia-style dies. These plates were made of steel rather than aluminum as the previous Waldale variety was, making it hard to find one that hasn't been eaten by rust by now.
NL 99 #HBK 606
Newfoundland and Labrador 1999 passenger issue. A short run of Viking plates was produced by Astrographics in British Columbia, again using the BC dies of the timeframe. This series started at plate number HBD 001, where the Cabot base had left off. This die style did not last long on the plate, as the manufacturer was changed once again by the end of the HBN series.
NL 00 #HBS 050
Newfoundland and Labrador 2000 passenger issue. Yet another manufacturer change and die variety, Waldale was once again contracted to produce plates from the HBO series on ("HBO series" as in plate number HBO-001 and up, not "The Sopranos"). This new run of plates featured a new set of Waldale dies, also seen on plates from Manitoba, New Brunswick and others. This series lasted through the end of the HCM series.
NL 01 #HCN 641
Newfoundland and Labrador 2001 passenger issue. HiSigns once again won the contract to produce Newfoundland plates from the start of the HCN series through the end of the HDZ series. These plates once again used the Alberta dies seen on the 1997 plate above.
NL 02 #HEA 676
Newfoundland and Labrador 2002 passenger issue. Plate production shifted back to Waldale for the HEA series through the end of this base at HEP-999. These plates were identical to the ones in the HBO through HCM series, as shown above.
NL 02 #HES 954
Newfoundland and Labrador 2002 passenger issue. This new issue was introduced in October, 2001 at the beginning of the "HER" series of plates. The design features a small graphic of the provincial flag at the bottom and the text "Newfoundland & Labrador Canada" with no slogan. Production of these plates was again done by Waldale, using the dies seen on the "HBT" and "HEA" series plates shown above. These plates were only issued to new registrants, with motorists able to re-validate their older 1982-present plates or switch to this new plate as their registrations expire.
NL 03 #HFR 870
Newfoundland and Labrador 2003 passenger issue. Newfoundland is currently contracting out their plate production one year at a time, with the above plate only issued through Summer 2002 before the province's production contract was changed once again, this time back to Astrographics in B.C. Along with a die change, the plate itself was modified slightly, with the province name shifted to the top of the plate to make it easier to see. This change appeared at the HFP series and ran through the end of the HGZ series before the contract was awarded to another vendor and the plate changed once again.
NL 04 #HGT 221
Newfoundland and Labrador 2004 passenger issue. Hey, what would a Newfoundland issue be without a trivial base variation thrown in for fun? This time around, Astrographics provided said variation by producing the first part of their Flag plates with blue bars in each of the bottom corners (as on the 2003 plate above) which were later removed, as on this plate. 2004 seems to be the first year that the provincial abbreviation was changed from the old "NF" to the current "NL" on the validation stickers.
NL 04 #HJS 096
Newfoundland and Labrador 2004 passenger issue. Newfoundland's current plate contract, as of Fall 2003, has been awarded to Irwin-Hodson of Oregon. With this switch also (of course) came a design change to the plate. The province name is now written in larger type on a single line at the top of the plate, similar to the older Viking plates. The flag graphic continues to appear at the bottom, although larger, and the word "Canada" has been removed. These plates also feature a new, distinctive die set, which is supposedly a variant of the Mississippi die set also used by Irwin-Hodson. This series started with the HHA series, although oddities in the way the plate orders were made resulted in plates in the mid- to late- HJx series being issued first, with numbers then backfilling into the HHx and earlier HJx series.
NL 05 #HJC 064
Newfoundland and Labrador 2005 passenger issue. Example of how the sequence of plates backfilled from the late HJx (HJS was supposedly one of the earliest issues) back into the earlier HJx series, with this "HJC" being issued several months after the "HJS" above. The province name and flag graphic on this plate appear slightly different, as they were screened on with paint on the earlier issued plates (as above), then embedded in the reflective material on later ones like this. Probably doesn't show in the scan, though.
NL 07 #HLN 559
Newfoundland and Labrador 2007 passenger issue. In 2006, Irwin-Hodson and Waldale apparently merged, at which point some of the existing contracts held by the companies underwent a "geographic correction." Oregon plates that had been made by Waldale in Nova Scotia returned to production at Irwin-Hodson in Oregon, and Newfoundland plates that were being made in Oregon were shifted back to Nova Scotia. As a result, the standard Waldale die set was reintroduced on this version of the flag plate.
NL 08 #HMV 845
Newfoundland and Labrador 2008 passenger issue. In 2006, Newfoundland and Labrador adopted a new provincial "brand" logo featuring a stylized province name and the image of a pitcher plant. Starting in 2007, this new logo was added to the license plate, with a change from red to blue lettering for the serial as well. This new issue made its debut in the HMV series in April, 2007.

Additional Newfoundland & Labrador information provided by: Andrew Osborne, Dave Fraser

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© Copyright 1998-2017 David Nicholson. All Rights Reserved.

Last Modified 3/19/2008 (added 2007 and 2008 plates).