Iowans Can Now Get Special License Plates Online

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Specialized license plates are hard to miss, especially as football season approaches.

Plates can have a personalized message on a background with the Hawkeyes, Cyclones, Panthers, or a number of other schools. There are also causes like nature, education, fire fighters, ems, to name a few.

People wanting to get one of these special plates will find it easier to obtain as the process is now online.

Iowa DOT Director Paul Trombino joined Governor Terry Branstad to introduce the new online application process. 

During the application process, a reason for the letters or words must be given.   A panel then reviews each letter combination to assure there is not some hidden meaning which some would find offensive, according to Trombino.

"These plate designs allow our customers to show their connection to an Iowa college or university, or support a cause," said Trombino.

There are 70 different plates available.  About two percent of Iowa's license plates are specialty or personalized plates. The cost is $90 for a personalized message, and $50 for a special plate.

"I won't put a number on it," said Trombino, " but I expect our specialty plate numbers to go up, now that it's so easy," he added. He also said they get many requests about the time the football season starts.  People seeking a regular plate still need to do so at their local county courthouse.