As of the new year, you’ll no longer have to worry about putting an expiry sticker on your license plate, but the province will be issuing new plates.
The Alberta government announced it will no longer use the stickers as it moves toward adopting reflective license plates.
“By moving to reflective licence plates, expiry stickers become redundant and outdated. This common-sense change cuts red tape, aligns Alberta with other Canadian provinces, and saves taxpayers money,” said Minister of Service Alberta Nate Glubish.
The province expects to work through the stock of existing plates by the fall of 2021, when the new reflective plates will be gradually phased in. The new plates will also be easier to read for automated scanners and assist police with validating registration at the side of the road.
You are not required to change out your existing plate, as the updated ones will be given out when a driver requires a new plate or if you choose to buy a new one.
“We already use reflective plates in Alberta,” said Glubish. “For the tens of thousands of specialty plates, our Support our Troops plates for example, so we know how to do this and we haven’t had any issues.”
Glubish added that Alberta is the only jurisdiction in the continent without the widespread use of reflective plates, and this is a bottleneck preventing police from adopting new technology that can automatically read plates.
The new plates also have enhanced security features to cut down on fraud, and the elimination of stickers will also end instances where criminals would steal stickers off of other plates or try to produce fake stickers.
“Registry agents support this next step to modernizing the delivery of registry services,” said Rikki McBride with the Association of Alberta Registry Agents. “We applaud Minister Glubish for taking the initiative to make changes that will benefit Albertans and cut red tape.”
Glubish added that the province spoke with police organizations and he is confident this is the right move to modernize the system.
Vehicle owners will still be responsible for renewing their registration on time and will require a valid certificate of vehicle registration.
Albertans can sign up to receive an electronic renewal notice through a registry agent, the Alberta Motor Association, or MyAlberta eServices. The changes will not change anything around how an Albertan renews the registration on their vehicle, apart from not being required to affix the sticker on the plate.
It will also cost the same to get one of the new plates, and it will look exactly the same as the older versions.
The government currently spends about $1.2 million per year to print, ship and store expiry stickers for licence plates.
Stickers will still be required for farm vehicles and prorated commercial vehicles participating in the International Registration Plan.