A total of 90 VIP plates fetched Dhs19.751 million…

The 103rd public auction for the emirate’s most prestigious number plates was held on Saturday December 21 at Intercontinental, Dubai Festival City, and saw a total of around 90 VIP plates fetch Dhs19.751 million.

According to the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), special Dubai number plate S70 was the highest selling, with the new owner paying almost Dhs2 million (Dhs1,900,00 to be exact) for the premium Dubai number plate. A bidding war also took place over plate number AA90, which finished with the final bid set at Dhs1.82 million and H333, which went for Dhs970,000.

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License plates in Dubai offer a sense of prestige for their owners, with owners in some cases spending up to 10 times more on the plate than the car itself. The world’s most expensive plate sold at auction went for Dhs52.2 million in Abu Dhabi to a proud owner of the sought-after ‘1’ plate. In Dubai, Raj Sahni spent Dhs33 million on the plate D5 for one of his Rolls Royces.

How plates are valued comes down to specific factors, the emirate, the letter and the number. Earlier letters and smaller numbers are generally more desired, with Dubai and Abu Dhabi plates ranking the most expensive out of the seven emirates.

Special number patterns are also coveted, such as ‘123’, ‘212’, ‘888’ and so on. Many drivers will bid higher for numbers with sentimental value, for example their birthday and you can request to be notified when your favourite plate comes up on Emirates Auction.

All proceeds taken at the RTA auctions are given to charity and the organisation encourages ‘healthy competition’ amongst the millionaire bidders.