Get your car registered in Alberta.

All vehicles operating on Alberta roads must be registered and have current insurance. You can only register a vehicle in Alberta where it will be kept.

Motor vehicles, like cars and trucks, and non-motor vehicles, like trailers, are both examples of vehicles.

You cannot register a vehicle if you have any unpaid fines. It takes a few days for an online fine payment to process before the corresponding online renewal is available.

Specifics from the Vehicle Registration Certificate

The following are components of a Certificate of Title:

  • owner's name as it appears on the title
  • the vehicle's description
  • a unique identifier for a motor vehicle.
  • License Plate Designation
  • identification number


A vehicle can be registered to a single owner if that person is 18 or older. When registering a vehicle for the first time, a person under the age of 18 who is not financially independent or married must have permission from a parent or legal guardian. The consent document will be signed by the consent giver at the office of the registry agent.

Vehicle registration is not required for visitors staying in Alberta for less than 183 days whose vehicles are already registered in another province or territory.

Within 90 days of establishing residency in Alberta, new residents are required to switch to an Alberta registration.

Putting someone else's name on a car registration

A proxy may submit an application for your behalf for a vehicle registration, renewal, cancellation, or transfer if you are physically unable to visit a registry office. The person acting on your behalf who submits the service request must include:

Put your car on the books.

You'll need to bring the following to a registry agent in order to get your car registered:

  • legal documentation establishing ownership, such as a lease, bill of sale, probated will, or letters of administration
  • insurance documentation detailing the requester's involvement with the vehicle.
  • legitimate forms of identification
  • a commercial, salvage, or out-of-state inspection.
    • First-time Alberta car registrants may be subject to an inspection if their pre-owned ride wasn't purchased in the province.

Time to sign up

Registrations for automobiles, motorcycles, and off-road vehicles are valid for between one and two years.

Commercial vehicle registration

Commercial vehicles must comply with stricter registration regulations.

A commercial vehicle is one that transports more than just the driver and passengers.

In Alberta, commercial vehicles must obtain one of three different types of license plates. You won't find anything similar to them on private vehicles. A commercial license plate designates the permitted activities for which a carrier may use its vehicle.

Standard Issue Identifier Plates

Used for:

  • Moving someone else's or one's own property from one place to another in exchange for payment.
  • Transportation of passengers, such as school buses, chartered tours, and cab services

Level-2 plates

Used for:

  • Delivery of goods within a radius of 10 kilometers of the listed address
  • Providing specialized services to various industries across multiple provinces

Level 3 plates

Used for:

  • Vehicles used in the public sector, such as those owned and operated by states, counties, cities, towns, school districts, and First Nation communities

You can't use a Class 3 plate to haul someone else's stuff for cash.

Time for Signing Up

Registration for a commercial vehicle is valid for a period of three months up to a year.

Acquiring a Business Vehicle Registration

Read the Commercial vehicle registration requirements for details on how to register a commercial vehicle and any other prerequisites.

Vehicles that don't need special permission

Some vehicles are exempt from the province of Alberta's vehicle registration requirements.

Autos that are illegal to operate on public thoroughfares

Vehicle registration certificates cannot be issued for miniature vehicles, and such vehicles may not be driven on public roads. Only on privately owned property are these vehicles permitted to be driven.

Some instances are:

  • powered scooters
  • mini-bikes
  • tiny motorcycles
  • a small, all-terrain vehicle with three or four wheels
  • segways
  • golf carts

A vehicle purchased solely for its parts counts as well.

Automobiles legal for use on public streets

There are some vehicles that can be driven on public roads without being registered. Several instances include:

  • Tractors, backhoes, graders, and street sweepers are all examples of heavy machinery.
  • trailers that have tools like air compressors, welders, tar buckets, concrete mixers, converter dollies, crushing equipment, jeeps, and boosters permanently attached to them when they aren't being used to transport cargo.
  • machinery used in agriculture or livestock farming
  • houses on wheels

Autos Bought Outside of Alberta

Getting a Canadian-purchased car registered

One of the following must be done if the vehicle was purchased from somewhere else in Canada other than Alberta:

  • inspection from outside the province
  • exam for salvageability
  • Auditing a Business

The type and condition of your vehicle will determine which inspection you must perform.

An Inspection Request is required prior to visiting an inspection station and can be obtained from a registrar.

Evaluations in other jurisdictions

In order to be registered in Alberta, a vehicle purchased from outside of the province but still within Canada must first pass an Alberta Out of Province Vehicle Inspection.

Depending on the vehicle's purchase date, its mileage, and its location, a new vehicle may not need an out-of-province inspection. Make sure your new car is eligible by consulting with a registrar.

Trailers, prorate commercial vehicles, and off-road vehicles (like ATVs and snowmobiles), do not require an out-of-province inspection.

Getting a car purchased abroad registered in Canada

You'll need an official inspection and import paperwork if you bought the car from someone outside of Canada.

To obtain an Inspection Request, you must present your proof of ownership and a completed Transport Canada Vehicle Import Form - Form 1 to a registry agent.

You'll need the following documents in order to get your imported car registered:

  • ownership documentation for the car
  • foreign, commercial, or salvage inspection
  • New Vehicle Information Statement (NVIS) or Electronic New Vehicle Information Statement (E-NVIS) or Certificate of Origin
  • a letter from an authorized pre-clearance importer or a completed Transport Canada Vehicle Import Form 1, Vehicle Import Form RIV, or Vehicle Import Form RIV exempt.

You must also submit the usual registration paperwork, which includes:

  • vehicle registration or proof of ownership documents
  • Alberta insurance documentation
  • a postal code in Alberta
  • Identifying Information

Alberta vehicles shipped overseas

Vehicle registration confirmation letters are available from the Alberta Registrar of Motor Vehicles and can be requested by drivers who are leaving the province and planning to register their vehicles in their new jurisdiction.

Learn about the background of an Alberta vehicle registration.

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