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Blue Slips: What you should know

Make sure your unregistered vehicle is ready for inspection with our handy guide to blue slips.

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Whether you've been off the road for a while and your registration has lapsed, or you've found a great deal for an unregistered car, you're probably going to need a blue slip before you can get your vehicle registered. But what is a blue slip? What's involved in an inspection and how much is it going to cost? Read on to find out what's involved in getting a blue slip and how you get your unregistered vehicle roadworthy and rolling again.

What is a blue slip?

A blue slip is a letter from your mechanic stating that an unregistered vehicle is safe, and that it meets design and identity standards. Your vehicle will need to pass various tests before you can receive a blue slip, and you won't be able to register an unregistered vehicle without one.

How much do blue slips cost?

The cost of a blue slip will depend on the type of vehicle and is separate to pink slip and registration fees. We got these costs from the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) website. Costs are for NSW only.

Type of vehicleCost
Light vehicle$67
Motorcycle$41
Trailer without brakes$34
Trailer with brakes$48

*Costs taken from NSW Gov on 30 June 2022

Blue slip requirements

A blue slip involves an inspection of your car's tyres, lights, fluids, suspension, seatbelts, brakes and checks for any leaks. A similar inspection is done for pink slips, but a blue slip inspection is more thorough. It also involves an identity check which ensures that the vehicle or its parts are not stolen. Your vehicle must also be up to its manufacturer's standards. You can find this in your vehicle's guide, or if none was provided, by a simple search of your vehicle's make and model on the Internet.

Blue slip checklist

If you're taking your unregistered vehicle in for a blue slip inspection, you'll need to take along a few things.

  • You will need proof of your identity, such as a driver's licence
  • Proof that you have bought the car. This can be a document such as a Certificate of Registration completed and signed on the back by the previous owner, a bill of sale from an auction house or motor dealer, or a completed Notice of Disposal signed by the last owner of the car.

    You will also need to make sure your vehicle is in a roadworthy condition and make any necessary repairs before it can pass inspection.

    When do you need a blue slip?

    You will need to get a blue slip if your vehicle's registration has been expired for more than three months, or if it was brought into New South Wales from interstate or overseas. While these are the most common reasons, you will also need a blue slip if your vehicle:

    • Has no number plates
    • Was previously written off
    • Requires adjustments in its registration records because something about the vehicle has changed significantly, such as a new engine
    • Needs defect notices cleared

    How long does a blue slip last?

    Once your vehicle has passed inspection and you have been issued a blue slip, you have 42 days to use it to register your vehicle. If you don't get your vehicle registered during this time you will need to take your car in for another blue slip inspection.

    How hard is it to get a blue slip?

    Compared to a pink slip, blue slip inspections are far more rigorous and come at a higher cost (pink slips are generally around $30). Blue slips require more thorough safety and operation checks, and check identification numbers on the vehicle and its parts, such as the engine number, to make sure that nothing has been reported stolen. If a check comes back with evidence of stolen parts, the police may investigate and you will need to supply proof that you bought the vehicle or its stolen part/s legally.

    How to get a blue slip for a motorcycle

    Getting a blue slip for a motorcycle is similar to getting one for a car. A thorough check is conducted by your mechanic, though it is a simpler inspection as a bike has fewer features to check than a car. Make sure you have completed all necessary repairs to make your motorcycle roadworthy and have your paperwork ready for inspection and registration.

    How to get a blue slip for a trailer

    Like a motorcycle, trailers are slightly easier to get passed for blue slip inspections. During an inspection, your mechanic will check your wheel bearings, winch and tyres, so be sure they are all in good working order before going in.

    FAQs about blue slips

    Blue slips won't protect your car, but comprehensive car insurance can

    Name Product Roadside Assistance Accidental Damage Storm Choice of Repairer Agreed or Market Value
    Budget Direct Comprehensive
    Optional
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: Awarded the 2021 Finder Award for Car Insurance - Value in QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA and Car Insurance - Features in NSW, VIC, WA, this policy offers solid coverage at a low cost. Budget Direct's claims service has received a 4.2/5 based on nearly 5,000 customer reviews.

    ⭐ Current offer: Get 15% discount on first year's premium when you take out a policy online. T&Cs apply.

    Who it might be good for: People who want a comprehensive policy without breaking the bank.
    Youi Comprehensive Car Insurance
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: Youi Comprehensive Car Insurance is one of the few providers to include roadside assistance in its policy. You'll also get access to YouiRewards which gives you discounts on furniture, parking and more. Youi also has a live chat feature on its site to talk through any questions.

    Who it might be good for: People over 25 who want comprehensive cover with a focus on customer service.
    Coles Comprehensive
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: With Coles comprehensive car insurance, you could earn double flybuys points at Coles supermarkets and you can get $10 off your Coles grocery bill every time you redeem 2,000 Flybuys points. If your car is damaged, you could benefit from a one-week turnaround on repairs.

    ⭐ Current offer: Get 10% off your first year's premium when you take out a policy online. T&Cs apply.

    Who it might be good for: Coles customers and Flybuys collectors.
    QBE Comprehensive
    Green Company
    QBE Comprehensive
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: QBE is a sustainable insurance company and also Finder's Green Insurer of the Year 2021 award winner. This policy offers the highest level of protection available from QBE including three-year new car replacement.

    ⭐ Current offer: Save $75 when you purchase a new comprehensive policy online. T&Cs apply.

    Who it might be good for: Those that are looking for a more environmentally friendly insurance choice.
    Bendigo Bank Comprehensive
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: Bendigo Bank’s comprehensive policy offers up to $30 million in liability insurance, cover for your personal items and the option of a replacement car if your vehicle is being repaired after an accident.

    Who it might be good for: Those who seek the peace of mind that comes with high legal liability and a range of cover benefits.
    Qantas Comprehensive
    Optional
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: You'll be able to choose how comprehensive you want your cover to be with optional extras like choice of repairer and the option of agreed or market value.

    ⭐ Current offer: Earn Qantas Points for joining and paying your premium. Sign up today and earn up to 20,000 Qantas Points (points awarded will be based on your premium). T&Cs and eligibility apply.

    Who it might be good for: People who'd like to earn Qantas Points.
    Australia Post Comprehensive
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: Australia Post car insurance offers comprehensive cover for things like theft, fire, new for old replacement and emergency accommodation and transport. Cover also extends to anyone who uses your car, not just you.

    ⭐ Current offer: Get $75 off your first year’s premium when you buy online. T&Cs apply.

    Who it might be good for: If multiple people use the one car and you don’t want to worry about listing all drivers.
    Woolworths Comprehensive
    Optional
    Agreed or Market
    Finder's summary: Woolworths has some unique perks like a price-beat guarantee where it'll beat any current comparable comprehensive renewal notice if you're over 25. You can also get 10% off your grocery shop once a month and can add roadside assistance onto your policy for just $7.33 per month.

    ⭐ Current offer: Save up to 15% when you buy online. T&Cs apply.

    Who it might be good for: Woolworths shoppers and those that want to take advantage of its price-beat guarantee.
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