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Front license plates are a car owner’s worst nightmare. If you live in a state that requires one, you know what we’re talking about. Unfortunately, there’s no way around using one of these ugly accessories if they’re legally required in your state. However, there’s a company approved to help you avoid damaging your car’s bumper in one state. Check out the best way around front license plates you’ve ever seen, License Plate Wraps.

The best way around front license plates

A front license plate wrap is the perfect way around an ugly front license plate bracket with holes in the bumper.
A Tesla with a front license plate wrap |

Unfortunately, the best way around front license plates is only available in California right now. That means residents of other states will have to keep doing it the usual way. According to CarBuzz, California asked the DMV to find alternatives to a front license plate mount as a cost-cutting measure back in 2014. It took until now for the DMV to come back with a solution.

In short, it’s a wrap of a license plate instead of a real metal one. Only a single company is approved by the State of California to make it for car owners. The car is still embarrassingly ugly with the tag visible, so enthusiasts won’t be too happy. However, it does solve the other issue, which is drilling unnecessary holes into your car’s bumper.

License Plate Wraps passed the California Highway Patrol’s testing, launching a pilot program in 2015. It was for only 28 cars and ended in 2021. However, California just extended the program to 2023. In the legalese on Senate Bill No. 806, it says, “Existing law authorizes the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue license plates for vehicles, as specified, and to issue one or more stickers, tabs, or other suitable devices in lieu of the license plates, as specified.”

Why would you want a license plate wrap?

A Mercedes with a front license late wrap, the best way around a front license plate.
A Mercedes with a front license plate wrap |

A wrap is the best way around front license plates. In California, it costs $50 a year for a standard license plate. However, the wrap is a one-time purchase, meaning it’s a cost-effective measure. Saving money is something no one ever complains about, especially with cars. We’re sure the gas prices in California balance it out right now, though. However, the biggest problem the wrap solves is holes in the bumper.

If you aren’t aware, a standard front license plate requires a bracket. First, the bracket is mounted on the bumper. It’s usually made of plastic and designed specifically for your particular model. That way, it sits perfectly contoured against the shape of the car’s bumper. Unfortunately, it then requires screws to hold it in place. Once screwed into the bumper, the license plate mounts onto the bracket easily. As a result, there are holes in the vehicle’s front bumper. However, if the front tag remains in place until you’re finished owning the car, you’ll never see them.

A front license plate wrap removes the holes in the bumper altogether. However, it doesn’t solve the most significant issue: having an ugly tag on your front bumper. Especially with expensive sports cars, it’s a shame to see such a hideous chunk of metal defacing the bumper.

Other front license plate alternatives

For some makes and models, there are front license plate bracket alternatives. Instead of drilling into the bumper, some allow owners to attach the bracket to the grille or in other slots on the fascia. However, this doesn’t work with every model, and it depends on the design. Be sure to purchase a drill-free bracket specifically for your vehicle’s year, make, and model to ensure it’ll fit properly. The last thing you want is your bumper flying off on the highway.

Californians can buy a front license plate wrap

Purchasing a license plate wrap is easy and solves a huge problem. Most people dislike having to drill into their car’s bumper. Moreover, we hope to see more innovations like this in the future and spread it to other states. Thirty different U.S. states require front license plates. In conclusion, we could drop them altogether, so we don’t have to look at them anymore.


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