Editor's Note: This article was originally published December, 2020, by the Directorate of Emergency Services


GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — Here are the Top 4 mistakes you want to avoid during your vehicle registration appointment.

1. Missing USAREUR Driver License/Insurance/Documents

The most common mistakes are not having a USAREUR driver license, not having insurance within the system or not having other related documents. To avoid these mishaps, we suggest all personnel review our checklists on the vehicle registration webpage for the most common transactions and review the new flow chart. We encourage personnel to e-mail us (usarmy.bavaria.id-europe.mbx.vehicle-registration@mail.mil) if there are further questions or clarifications. Prior to submitting questions, we do ask that personnel first review the checklists to allow us to serve other customers.

Furthermore, there are only two U.S. insurance companies which interface with the USAREUR database (USAA and Mirascon). Personnel often fail to contact (via phone or e-mail) their insurance companies until the day of their appointment. On average, it takes 24 hours for the information to sync with our database. Prior to scheduling an appointment, personnel may e-mail our vehicle registration team and request verification of insurance. Please scroll to the checklists section of the Vehicle Registration website and review Checklist #14: Insurance.

2. Waiting until the Last Minute

Prior to PCS, we see an extremely high rate of personnel waiting until the last minute to de-register vehicles and obtain shipping plates. Upon receiving orders for PCS, personnel should immediately start the process to de-register and ship their vehicle(s).

We also see personnel waiting until the last minute to obtain a vehicle inspection, while they have their 30 day temporary plates. Personnel should immediately have their vehicle inspected after receiving their temporary plates, which will allow them time to correct deficiencies (if any), and schedule a new vehicle registration appointment to receive their permanent registration and plates.

USAREUR mails out letters to personnel — reminding them that their registration is due for renewal — 75 days in advance. We receive several e-mails where individuals state their registration expires soon (within two weeks) and they need an appointment. Since everyone receives the same notification in the mail, our division does not accept this as a valid excuse for skipping ahead in the appointment schedule.

3. Using a Different Name

Vehicle Registration also has personnel scheduling appointments under a different last name than what is on their ID card (i.e. a spouse using their maiden name). On arrival, we ask for their ID card, and we are unable to locate an appointment. Only later do we learn that the appointment was scheduled under a different name.

4. Several Vehicles that are Not Properly Registered

Another common mistake is having several vehicles that are not properly registered. All vehicles owned must be current on registration in order to complete any type of transaction within the USAREUR system.

Important Note: Temporary Plates

We often hear the question, “Why do I need temporary plates to drive my vehicle across the parking lot to get an inspection?”

The Army Europe Regulation was designed for all of Europe — not just Grafenwoehr. Some areas, such as Garmisch, requires personnel to pick their vehicle up in Boeblingen. The temporary plates allow the vehicle to be legally operated for the drive to the inspection point. The second reason for temporary plates is not all vehicles pass the safety inspection, having temporary plates will allow you to operate the vehicle and make the necessary repairs.