The government has spent £344,183.53 on paper tax discs over the past three years.

This figure includes the costs for procurement of and printing of discs, enveloping and postage.

This was revealed in a freedom of information response.

The response said that the figure does not include staff costs for time spent processing and packaging which can vary, but equates to approximately £37,500 over the three years.

It also does not account for the back end computer systems and other overheads.

A tax disc is a circular certificate that vehicle owners have to place on the front windscreen of road vehicles, as visual proof that vehicle tax has been paid.

The usage of paper tax discs were removed in late 2014 in the UK.

In the UK the Vehicle Excise Duty System was streamlined and is now tracked electronically.

Yet, three years after the abolition of the paper tax discs, the BBC reported that the number of unlicensed vehicles on the roads had tripled since the paper tax discs were abolished.

This meant that at the time, the government potentially lost out on £107 million from 755,000 unlicensed vehicles.

In 2020 in the Isle of Man, the at the time infrastructure minister, Tim Baker, said that a six month vehicle tax would be introduced later that year, along with a ‘suite of online services for driver and vehicle licensing’.

He added that while paper tax discs would be kept for the time being, the routine use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition technology meant they could be phased out in future if that was seen to offer an overall benefit.

Whilst this did not happen that year, in February this year, it was announced that Tynwald was to consider changes to vehicle duty, whereby motorist would be able to pay for six months road tax.

Whilst the Vehicle Duty Order is still pending approval, it does not mention a shift from paper tax discs to an electronic system.