Tags – London Taxi Driver Requirements
So, how do you become a member of the elite gang of London ‘cabbies’?
Famous for their chirpy, cockney manner and occasional aggressive driving, there’s something intrinsically British about a London Black Cab driver.
However, love them or hate them, they are adept drivers and all incredibly knowledgeable about the layout of London.
As such, they are incredibly skilful in getting from one location to another in the most efficient way.
In order to become a licensed London taxi driver, there are certain criteria you need to consider.
It is by no means an easy or speedy process.
Moreover, there are very specific requirements you must meet if you decide you want to drive a public hire vehicle in the capital.
For instance, first and foremost, you need to be legally entitled to live and work in the UK.
Additionally, a full DVLA, Northern Ireland or other European Economic Area driving licence is essential.
However, whilst you must be over 21 to be licensed, you can apply as young as 18 years old.
Private Hire and Public Hire
Different categories of London taxi services require different licences, both issued by Transport for London.
For example, a Green Badge allows you to carry passengers anywhere in London but you can only carry passengers in the suburbs as a Yellow Badge driver.
Similarly, there are two different types of hire too.
Whilst a London minicab driver works under Private Hire rules, a London Black Cab Driver needs to fulfil Public Hire criteria.
Licensed London taxi drivers must prove a wide and detailed knowledge of points of interest and roads in London.
This is called the Knowledge and includes 320 standard routes through Central London.
As such, any Green Badge drivers need to have an in-depth knowledge of London within a six mile radius of Charing Cross.
Furthermore, it can take up to four years to get to the point of passing the Knowledge!
In addition to the world-famous Knowledge, to be a London taxi driver, you must also satisfy other rules and regulations.
For example, it’s a requirement to take and pass a medical examination.
Equally, a criminal record check via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) will also be needed.
Furthermore, if a Hackney Carriage (the traditional black cab synonymous with London taxis) is your preferred vehicle as a would-be London cabbie, you must also apply for a hackney carriage driving licence too.
Complex, Lengthy and Costly
In all, it’s not an easy process to become a London Taxi Driver, particularly a Public Hire cabbie.
Moreover, it takes serious commitment and dedication to jump through the necessary hoops.
Not only is the application process complex and lengthy, there is the financial commitment of various licences and tests as well as insurances to consider too.
To learn more, get in touch with us today.
In the meantime, check our Oxford Taxis service.
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