LTO special plates are back

During the tenure of former president, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, the Land Transportation Office (LTO), has allowed motorists to “buy” specialized plate numbers from the agency at a premium cost.

For example, a new car owner may opt, if not yet taken by another motorist, a special plate number bearing his initials JDC 88 (Juan Dela Cruz 88) from the LTO.

Now, the policy is back.

Back in June, shortly before stepping down as agency chief, LTO Assistant Secretary Edgar Galvante signed Memorandum Circular 2022-2335 or the Revised Guidelines in the Acquisition of Optional Motor Vehicle Special Plates (OMVSP).

Under the memo, owners of brand-new private vehicles may apply for a specialized plate number from the LTO upon the vehicle’s initial registration.


The cost of OMVSP is not cheap, and under the program, a 3-letter with a 3-numeric plate number will set back a motorist PHP 15,000, while a 3-letter with a 2-numeric plate number costs PHP 25,000. Finally, a 3-letter with 4-numeric OMVSP will cost PHP 35,000.

You can read the full text of Memorandum Circular 2022-2335 here.

Motorcycles excluded

For motorcycle owners who can afford the hefty price tag of OMVSP, unfortunately, the memo left out motorcycles completely. Under A II of the said memo, only cars, SUVs, AUVs, pickups, vans, and imported vehicles that fall under those previously mentioned are allowed to get an OMVSP.

Public utility vehicles, cargo trucks, service vehicles, and vintage vehicles are likewise not included in the program.

If you’re planning on getting a new car or SUV/pickup and want a special plate, you may want to tell the sales rep to register under the OMVSP program.