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First of all, I must say Date Codes are not an absolute way to determine authentcity of Louis Vuitton items. Many
Vintage Louis Vuitton do not have Date Codes at all and nowadays almost all fake bags have date codes. Date code
(DC) is also commonly refered to as "serial numbers" and can be used interchangeably. DC were only widely used after
the 1990's. The DC was meant for the use of Louis Vuitton employees internally to identify their own handbags. Not
for authenticity purposes. Not all handbags with serial numbers are authentic and not all handbags without a serial
number are fake.
Louis Vuitton made in the early 80's had three or four digits only and Louis Vuitton made in the
late 80's had three or four digits followed by two letters. I've also seem some vintage handbags with one letter
followed by 5 digits.
Date codes since the 90's consists of two letters followed by four numbers. The first two letters tell you "the
country where it is made" and the numbers tell you the "month and year it was manufactured".
For defination of letters, refer to the following: (Be aware that this list is not complete and only Louis Vuitton
has the complete list. The following is generated from personal experience):
France: A1, A2, AA, AO, AC, AN, AR, AS, BA, BJ, CT, DU, ET, FL, FR, MB, MI, NO, ND, RA, RI, SD, SL, SN, SP, SR, TH,
USA: FC, FH, FF, LA, OS, SD
Spain: CA, LO, LB, LM, LW
Italy: CE, MA, SA
The following are some examples:
Example I, Serial number "SP0011" means the bag is made in France and it was made on January, 2001. You take the
first and third digit as the month: 01 means January and you take the second and forth digit as the year: 01 means
Example II, Serial number "LA0999" means the bag is made in USA on 09 (means September, take first and third digit),
year 1999 (take second and last digit 99 meaning year 1999, only last 2 digits of the year is displayed for
Now what do you think serial number "CA0917" mean? Yes, your right, it means Made in Spain, January 1997.
Since January 2007, Louis Vuitton has yet adopted another serial number reading system. Instead of first and third
digit being the month, it now means the week of the year the bag was made. For example, VI 2007 translates "Made in
France 20th week of 2007 meaning around the third week of May. This was perhaps changed to combat the counterfeit
Now that you are an expert in reading Date code or Serial Numbers, I will continue to show you more ways to buy 100%
Authentic Louis Vuitton.