What’s the Psychology Behind Buying a Private Number Plate

(STL.News) – A vehicle is likely to become a prized possession of the owner.  Many people seem to have an attachment to their car; whether it’s a new car straight off the lot or an old beater, the family car becomes like family themselves.  They share all our memories, good and bad.

We attach our emotions to them, so we spend a ludicrous amount of money on them.  Servicing, performance-boosting, valeting, coloring, and for this article buying custom number plates.

It’s fashionable to get customer number plates on your bike or car, but it has a different reputation than it did years ago.  They’re cheaper and more accessible than they used to be and can be found on sites like https://absolutereg.co.uk.  Before, custom number plates were seen on expensive cars like Limos and Ferraris, but now can be viewed on average priced Nissans and Fords.

Psychological studies suggest that personal number plates along with furry dice and rear window and stickers are associated with aggressive drivers inclined to road rage.  An exception is the ‘Baby on Board’ sign, which does not correlate with aggression and is used to caution other drivers from veering too close.

This same study stated that motorists who name their cars generally do this as a way to mark their territory and to warn of the readiness to safeguard against their road space being invaded.  This also applies to small family drivers as well as expensive cars.  The more of these markers on display, the more aggressive they are likely to be.  Those sporting multiple stickers are 16% more likely to be victims of road rage.

Private number plates are either loved or hated by general consumers, but they make a fair chunk of change for the government at about $250,000 each day and over 1.47 billion since they were implemented.  Still, polls suggest that custom plates are what other drivers dislike the most when they see others on the road.

Driver anger expert Dr. Mark Sullman of Hertfordshire University depicted that drivers who are more territorial and aggressive in their personal lives bring this out when they’re personalizing themselves (clothing) and with their vehicles.  They’re likely to take poor driving maneuvers more seriously, which triggers road rage.

There is an exception in the data, however, as senior citizens who personalize their cars are not any more or less likely to be aggressive on the road, as stated by Dr. Nick Reed of Transport Research Laboratory.

Of course, taking every single driver with a customer plate as a road rager would be incorrect; it’s just more likely that they’ll act this way as per data.  Swiftcover, motor insurer, suggests staying away from personalized cars just to be safe or to reduce personalization as much as possible.  This not only saves you money, but it could also keep you from the potential incident.

However, if you’re going to personalize your vehicle, it might be best to stay away from a personalized plate in general, as stickers and fuzzy dice do not have the same negativity attached to them by the general public as the plates.