If you own a Louis Vuitton handbag and are worried about its authenticity, you have come to the right place. Nothing hurts more than buying a designer handbag for thousands of dollars and finding out that it’s a cheap knockoff. So, let’s take a look at how to find a Louis Vuitton date code.
The question that most women are plagued with is, “How did I not find out sooner that the handbag I was buying was a fake?”
Well, that’s because there are tiny details hidden in plain sight that fool you into believing you are buying an original. Don’t fret, because this happens to everyone. Unlike other designer handbags, a fake Louis Vuitton is harder to spot. Its logo is pretty simple, and with so many collections in the inventory, the design of this canvas handbag is easy to replicate. The one thing that does set this brand’s handbag apart is the trim’s material, which is made of Vachetta leather. Next is the date code, because a Louis Vuitton does not have a certificate of authenticity. Yes, you read that right. So, don’t let sellers convince you otherwise.
What is a Louis Vuitton Date Code?
The first thing you need to know about the date code is that it does not indicate a handbag’s authenticity. It simply tells you where it was made and when. There’s no online system where you can type in the code and find out if your handbag is an original or a fake. A real Louis Vuitton can only be identified by its stitching, the material’s quality and the logo’s placement.
Moving on to the date code, it consists of 2 alphabets and 4 numbers.
For example, “AR1128”
The 1st and 3rd number together tell the week and the 2nd and 4th number tell the year. Based on this date code, the handbag was made in France in the 12th week and in 2018.
Keep in mind that Louis Vuitton handbags did not have a date code before the 80s. This system was introduced in the early 80s when counterfeits starting popping up all over the world. Since then, the date codes have been updated. Here’s a list of all the date codes for Louis Vuitton handbags:
- Before 1982:No date codes.
- From 1982 to the Mid-1980s:3 to 4-digit codes that indicated the month and year the handbag was made in. The first two numbers were the year and the rest showed the month.
- From the Mid-1980s to Late-1980s:: 3 to 4-digit codes with alphabets that indicated the month and year and the country the handbag was made in in the same order.
- From 1990 to 2006:The position of the date code was changed. The alphabets indicating the country the handbag was made in was moved to the front and alternative numbers combined together represented the month and year.
- From 2007 to Present:This time, instead of the position of the code, what the numbers represented was changed. The alternative numbers now represent the week and year the handbag was made in.
2020 Date Code List
USA: FC, FH, LA, OS, SD, TX, FL.
Switzerland: DI, FA.
Germany: OL, LP.
Spain: BC (2015 Onwards and for Italy Too), CA, JJ (Mostly Straps Category), LO, LB, LM, LW, GI, UB
Italy: BC (For Spain Too), BO, CE, FO, FH (For USA Too), MA, PL, NZ, OB, RC, RE, SA (For France Too), TB, TD, NZ.
France: A0, A1, A2, AA, AAS (Special Order), AH, AN, AR, AS, BA, BE, BJ, BU, DR, DU, DT, CO, CX, CT, ET, FL (For USA Too), LM (2019 Onwards and for USA Too), LA (2019 onwards) LW, MB, MI, MM, ML, NO, RA, RI, SA (For Italy Too), SD (For USA Too), SF, SL, SK, SP, SR, SN, TJ, TH, TR TA, TS, TY, VX, VI.
Where to Find the Date Code on Your Louis Vuitton Purse
As mentioned earlier, a Louis Vuitton handbag with a date code does not prove its authenticity. Date codes too can be replicated. The good news is that there will be some factors that won’t match a real Louis Vuitton handbag. To know more about this, check out our blog post “How to Tell If a Louis Vuitton Purse Is Real.”
Now, if you don’t find a date code in your handbag, don’t panic. There are two reasons behind this: either you’re not looking in the right place or the date code has faded. The latter happens but seldom. Usually, older Louis Vuitton handbags had the date code written on an alcantara fabric. This was a micro suede-type material, which was used in the lining. Anything written or stamped on it is susceptible to fading.
Nowadays, the date code is embossed on a leather tab that’s located in a secure place so that when the lining is cleaned, none of the solutions rubs on it. Below are the places where you can look for the date code:
- In the interior pocket
- Behind the lining
- Stamped on the inside of the opening tab
- Older models had the date coded embossed near the handles
- The leather tab that’s sewn into the exterior pocket
*The date code will always be stamped or embossed on a small leather tab, which will be sewn into the pocket.
The location of the date code tab differs based on the collection. Here are a few popular Louis Vuitton handbags and their date code locations:
- Speedy:Inside the internal pocket.
- Neverfull:Inside the zipped pocket.
- Pochette Metis:Inside the metis of the zipped pocket in the back.
- Artsy:Located on the lining’s fabric.
- Toiletry Pouch:Embossed on the leather lining.
Our Final Thoughts on How to Find a Louis Vuitton Date Code
The best thing about owning a designer handbag is the satisfaction of owning something so expensive and luxurious. This feeling can be quickly dashed if your handbag is fake.
One thing this short guide on how to find a Louis Vuitton date code will teach you is how to spot a real handbag from a fake. Simply match the code with a list provided above, check for any curves in logos, zig-zag signs in stitching and you will have your answer.