Canadian Territory's Polar Bear-Shaped License Plates Are So Cool They Keep Getting Stolen

Why did the rest of us get stuck with rectangles?
Canadian Territory's Polar Bear-Shaped License Plates Are So Cool They Keep Getting Stolen

We're all generally used to seeing the same old boring license plates on cars, even if they're different colours. However, one place in Canada has said so long to rectangles and gone with something far more interesting. Northwest Territories license plates are in the shape of a polar bear, and they have been since 1970.

The plates were first introduced 50 years ago to celebrate the region's centennial, according to Autotrader.

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Even though North American license plates had been standardized as a 12 inch by six inch size, the polar bear plates actually meet the requirements and have all their bolt holes lined up in the right spots.

While the original design was a simple white-on-blue colour scheme, the most recent update adds a more detailed graphic background to them, and even includes a second polar bear (because you can never have enough).

The plates are popular with collectors. Naples, Florida resident Al Noto has two of them, and he told Naples Daily News that they are his favourites.

There is also an issue with them being stolen. The local RCMP noted that there were 23 reports of licence plate theft in the first two months of 2019, according to Cabin News.

With such uniquely shaped plates, it must be easy to spot a car from outside of the region pretty quickly. Just look for the ones with plates that aren't in a cool shape.

Nunavut also had its own polar bear plates for a period of time after it was formed in 1999, but eventually, they had to revert back to rectangular ones when NWT made the shape a registered trademark.

However, they still include an image of the animal, since northern Canada is pretty well-known for its sheer amount of polar bears.

If you want to get your own polar bear plate, you can actually order a souvenir one on the NWT tourism website for $24.95.