Driving with Bio-ethanol

Why you need a VB-Nummer to register a car

FahrzeugscheinI’ve talked before about how the process of buying and registering a car in Germany.

Since I recorded that podcast there has been a change in the way that the insurance works, as I found out when I changed my car last year.

One of the best things about the German registration system is that you must arrange insurance for the car before you go to the Zulassungsstelle to register it.  If you do not, then you will either not receive any number plates to put on the car, or at the very least they will not have valid stickers on them, making uninsured cars very easy to spot on German roads.

So before you go to register the car, you used to call your insurance company and they would send you a white card called a Doppeldeckungskarte.  Originally this consisted of two identical parts, hence the Doppel in the name.  When you registered ownership of the car, one part stayed with the registration office and the other was used to notify the insurance company that you had been there and completed the process.

The card also had some insurance implications, such as 3rd party cover for the journey to and from the registration office.

The format of the card changed slightly in 2003, when the Doppel part got dropped, and was replaced with an electronic system.  But you still needed the single white card to register the car.

Now (and apparently since 2008) everything is electronic.

> Continue reading at AllThingsGerman.net

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