Mike’s trip to the BMV: not bad at all!


Column and photos by WNLP’s Mike Kellems

I recently purchased a new vehicle and with that goes the customary trip to the (cue loud scary music) Bureau of Motor Vehicles. While planning my trip to the BMV, I thought that it would be a good opportunity to write about and share my experience because, as we all know in the past, going to the BMV could be quite an adventure. I’m happy to report that whatever it was in the past that made people dread this visit, it has remained in the past. This is also taking into consideration the backlog of work needing to be done due to the COVID-19 shutdown.

I had Friday off so that was my target day. I made sure to have all necessary paperwork and headed to the La Porte branch at 1301 Pine Lake Rd. As I pulled into the parking lot I counted 14 vehicles. There were six people in a line, standing outside the front door; a front door and wall that had at least 15 pages of instructions posted.

I got a queasy feeling in pit of my stomach. I took my place at the end of the line and a few minutes later, a BMV employee named Kandace popped outside and handed me a ticket with the number 46 printed on it. It was 9:50 AM; they open at 8:30 AM and I was #46. Things were looking up!

I was only outside standing in line for about ten minutes when Kandace opened the door and gave me my seat assignment inside, seat #4, and a few minutes later I was sitting in front of Sandra. I explained what I wanted to accomplish and handed over all of my paperwork. Sandra was pleasant and efficient as she sorted through the paperwork, punched data into the computer and completed my transaction, all in about 10 minutes.

Since the first license plates were made and the first driver’s licenses were issued, the BMV has been the target of jokes by comedians across the USA. I’m guessing that the rep was deserved at one time; however that has changed and changed for the good! I was in and out in about 30 minutes. There was a constant flow of customers and Kandance, like a military general, shuffled folks in and out of the door, disinfected every seat and work station after each customer’s visit — and she did it all with a smile and a pleasant attitude. I’ve heard from other recent customers that they too have experienced the same efficiency on their visits and I hope you do, too. Like death and taxes, everyone must visit the BMV in their lifetime. Whoever is pushing the buttons downstate, they’ve hit on a winning formula. I’ll trust them not to change a thing — at least not until I have to renew my driver’s license next year!



2 Responses to “Mike’s trip to the BMV: not bad at all!”

  1. Walter Brath

    Jul 27. 2020

    I too got another vehicle and dreaded the trip to the BMV. I got my appointment online and on the date went to our LaPorte branch. I was thinking it was going to be like buying a new car. Well my experience was much like Mike’s It was fast, efficient, and all the employees were smiling and working like ants. I had a wonderful experience there and walked out feeling like I just got the best service anywhere. All the employees deserve a big “atta boy” Your doing a great job.

    Walter Brath

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  2. Cary

    Jul 27. 2020

    I too headed to the local BMV in June. Dreaded long line. So I left, not having time that morning. We were heading out of town that afternoon. Decided to try Plymouth BMV as a we drove by. Walked right in and got out in minutes with 7 updated registrations.

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