Why U-Haul vans all have Arizona license plates

Why U-Haul trucks all have Arizona license plates


An esoteric agreement between the 48 continental US states, Washington DC and all 10 Canadian provinces determining how big-rigs and other commercial vehicles that travel across state lines divvy up billions of dollars of license plate registration fees.

The issue of U-Haul’s license plates took on greater significance last week, after investigators in New York City said they were looking for information about a U-Haul van with Arizona plates in connection with a subway shooting that left more than 20 people injured.

When you register your passenger car, you usually pay a small license plate fee to your state DMV that goes to funding roads, bridges and other public infrastructure projects.

But commercial trucking, rental and leasing companies that use big rigs to transport goods through multiple states operate under a completely different system. These vehicles need special permission to travel across state lines and have to pay higher license fees, often upwards of $1,000 a year.