One of the first things I noticed when I moved to North Dakota more than 3 years ago is how many people are driving around without this one particular thing.

It was so bizarre to me, because where I'm from everyone has them. I'm talking about front license plates. There are tons of people in the state of North Dakota driving around without license plates on both ends of their cars.


I was so shocked to see this. There are even some very lucky and brave individuals who only have a front plate on and drive around without a back one (Yes, I've seen this many times).


What Is The Law?

I was thinking about this on my drive to work the other day, so I looked it up. What are the license plate laws in the state of North Dakota?

Here's what I found:

According to, there is a ND Century Code 39-04-11 that explicitly states you are required, by law, to have a license plate on both the back AND front of your car.

While this may be true, it doesn't seem like many of us are following it, nor is the law being strictly enforced.

How Many States Require This?

According to, there are 30 states that require a front license plate.

States That Require License Plates (According to

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • South Dakota
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

All the remaining states do not require two license plates to be displayed.

Get Going

If you don't have two license plates, why? -- They give you two at the DMV. Also, you might want to remedy that situation, before you get caught.


6 Things North Dakotans Do While Driving

Here are some things we do that annoy people.

Gallery Credit: Andi Ahne



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To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.

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