I'm planning to drive my UK-registered electric vehicle in the Netherlands and Germany. I may (by design or accident!) drive in a low emissions zone in either country. Do I need to have a sticker on the car, or do these only apply to petrol/diesel cars?

  • Incidentally, in the Netherlands, the restrictions only impact diesel cars. Petrol cars are fine too, no matter how old or inefficient they might be.
    – Relaxed
    Commented Feb 10, 2022 at 17:19
  • Does the car have an E license plate or an E sticker? Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 10:38
  • @MarkJohnson it has the UK "green slash" on the number plate.
    – xorsyst
    Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 13:29
  • Yes, that would be the equivalent of the german plate with an E at the end. The next question is then if any of the local police know what that means. Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 14:08
  • Related: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/5946/…
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 19:23

1 Answer 1


In Germany, the answer is yes: If an area is restricted you need a sticker (“Umweltplakette”) even if your vehicle is electric and obviously qualifies. Comments mentioned the fact that you can order it online and some exceptions for cars with another national sticker or special number plates but you definitely need a marker of some sort. Otherwise, you will have to locate some certification bureau that can issue the sticker. It's been a long time since I did it but as far as I know you get a sticker on the spot for a small fee, based on the car's registration papers. You do have to plan for 15 minutes and check their opening hours (the most annoying thing if you travel on a week-end).

In the Netherlands, there is no sticker and you do not have to do anything in advance. Enforcement is fully automated for Dutch number plates and you can check online if your car qualifies. For foreign number plates, it's up to you to check the rules and enforcement is obviously more difficult but if your car does qualify, you can simply drive in the restricted area without any formalities. Exact restrictions vary depending on the city but for cars, they only impact diesel engines and an electric vehicle obviously qualifies.

  • only with a green sticker could it be determined "at first glance" in a simple way and by personnel with no further training whether a vehicle was allowed to drive in the inner cities twitter.com/alex_avoigt/status/1440356423469199364 Commented Feb 10, 2022 at 20:36
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    Addendum from someone who recently bought a Umweltplakette for Germany: You can order them online and they send it to you in the mail (I'm in Switzerland). Just expect it to take a couple of days.
    – user57106
    Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 7:07
  • @Wolter I added a sentence about that, thanks!
    – Relaxed
    Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 8:35
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    That may not be needed if the car has a foreign E license plate or a foreign E sticker: See: Foreign-registered Vehicles - Berlin.de ... Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 10:33
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    >You do have to plan for 15 minutes Depending on the city/location of that office it could also be 4 hours waiting and only available with a pre-booked appointment (especially during covid)
    – Hobbamok
    Commented Feb 11, 2022 at 13:17

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