I have been to almost every state in Malaysia, except, Kelantan and Terengganu. Every states has their own distinctive features, food, culture and language. But the most obvious one will be the vehicles plate number. Every state has their own plate numbers which started with certain correspond alphabetical order. But except one state which is obviously Sarawak (my own home land) does not seems to make any sense or at all. These are my points :-
- Johor = their plate numbers always start with "J" ie: JBH9999 or JFR8888.
- Melaka = their plate numbers always start with "M" ie: MAB1111 or MEF4444.
- Negeri Sembilan = it always starts with "N" ie: NBW777 or NEF1414
- Selangor = obviously starts with "B" ie: BAE3535 or BGW1717
- Perak = even easy to remember. It all started with "A". ie: AEC555 or ADE36
- Penang = well its "P" of course ie: PEH1234 or PAP4321
- Kedah = as always starts with "K" ie: KA333 or KAE909
- Perlis = if am not mistaken started with "R" ie: RC303 or RB790
- Pahang = all starts with "C" ie: CAW345 or CBE543
- Terengganu = all starts with "T" ie: TT999 or TA352
- Kelantan = their plate number starts with "D" ie: DAD222 or DAE976
- KL = even easy this one. Starts with "W" ie.. errr I think you guys can guess!
- Putrajaya = hmmm.. sometimes I saw Putrajaya sometimes I saw started with "W" too.
- Labuan = all starts with "L" ie: LB4994 or LL300
- Sabah = I think all starts with "S" just like Singapore. ie: SB9556B or SAA467A or something like that.
Anyway, every states in Malaysia has their own distinctive alphabet for their plate numbers. But in Sarawak, we have so much variation. I must say "Q" is our alphabetic correspondence here but then, it does not mean it must be the fore letter of the plate number. It can also be the last letter of the plate number. Let me show you some examples :-
- In Sarawak during the old days, our plate numbers normally corresponds to our district where the vehicle first registered. For example in Kuching, it all started with "K" ie: KA434 or in Miri MB788.
- In 90's JPJ had imposed Sarawak vehicle to put alphabet "Q" as its states plate correspondence. So then later, the previous KA434 became KA434Q and MB788 became MB788Q.
- Then after we run out second alphabet for our plate numbers, then the government imposed the Sarawak vehicle to put the letter "Q" as fore-front letter of the plate numbers and continue with the correspondence district alphabet. ie: for Kuching, its QKA1111, for Miri is QMA2222 and so forth.
- During this time too, some of our districts had a similar fore letter for example, Kuching and Kanowit. To differentiate it, the government create another set of plate number that only shows the numbers of the division in the states. ie: for the 7th Division of the states, all vehicles will starts with "7D" continue with the plate number and ends with the letter "Q". For example; 7D 111Q.
So you guys think that Sarawakian's plate numbers are confusing?? Wait till you see our current one. Back in 2003, Kuching's plate number were running out. The last one is QKY9999 and we could not used letter "Z" as its attributed only to the army. So some genius had created that Sarawak should start and adopt KL style. No matter which division we coming from, all must carry the systematic and orderly order of plate numbers. Then in 2003 all Sarawak plate numbers starts with QAA1 and still continue.
As I wrote this entry, we are now currently serving plate number QAP****. As I see it, we are running our "QA" soon and perhaps by next year, we all starts with "QBA". But the funny thing is that the plate number for "QBA" has already exist corresponding to the old style of plate number reflecting the division. I wonder how the government will solve this problem later... and seriously, Sarawak's plate numbers now are redundant and those molding the rules of plate numbers in Sarawak are not making any sense.
Imagine in year 2020, I own a brand new car bearing register plate number QKA999. Back in 90's we already have this number. I foresee that someone will come to me and say:-
"Pakcik! Why are you still driving an old iron scraped!!!"