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Taxi Driving as a Career

By: Sally Aquire - Updated: 4 Jun 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
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If you have a valid driving licence, you can choose to change your career to full-time taxi driving. Taxi drivers have a responsibility for providing safe and reliable transport for passengers.

Becoming a Taxi Driver

There is no formal qualification to become a taxi driver, but you may need to pass a practical taxi driving test if your local licensing authority requires you to do so. The first stage of this is the eyesight test to check that your vision is up to scratch. As with a car practical test, you need to be able to read a number plate from 20.5 metres away (for an old style number plate) or 20 metres (for a new style number plate).

In the driving part of the practical test, you will be assessed on your driving style, awareness/anticipation skills, using speed correctly, reversing skills, and passenger safety issues. In some cases, you may be asked to perform an emergency stop. If you are taking the practical test for a Black cab, you are also assessed on the 'wheelchair element'. This involves demonstrating your ability to cater for disabled passengers, such as erecting wheelchair ramps, and loading and unloading wheelchairs.

You will also be asked Taxi Safety questions, which you can download examples of from the DSA website. You can book your practical test online on the DSA website's online booking service.

Hackney Cabs

To drive a Hackney cab, you need to have had a driving licence for at least a year, be aged over 21, and have no criminal convictions. As Hackney cabs can be hailed on the street without the driver having an opportunity to plan the route in advance, you need to display a very good working knowledge of the local area. In London, you will have to do 'The Knowledge', which involves knowing London very well. You will usually have to take the DSA practical test too.

Private Hire Taxis

Another alternative is to become a private hire taxi driver. This refers to the taxis that need to be booked in advance, rather than hailed in the street. Many private hire taxi drivers are self-employed (although some do work for a licensed operator), and use their own car to transport passengers to and from their destinations. They have to take care of their own fuel and maintenance costs, as well as dealing with taxes (including those paid to the taxman), MOTs and insurance for the car.

An excellent knowledge of the local area is essential, as taxi drivers must know the quickest route. You will need to fit a radio in your car to take calls from the operator, and a meter to keep track of fares. These types of costs can quickly mount up before you have actually earned any money.

In both cases, you need to have medical fitness that is equivalent to the DVLA group 2 required of LGV, bus and coach drivers. This involves passing a medical test taken with your GP. Health concerns that could result in a failed application include poor eyesight, diabetes and heart problems.

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Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
pradip - Your Question:
Hi my name is pradipkumar banio. I want to be come pravet taxi driver but I dont know how to ready for theaory test. I dont know.i live in leicester. can you help me for thearoy pleaase tell me how to pass my test.yhank you for help me.

Our Response:
The first step is obtain a copy of the highway code, this can be bought as a paperback booklet or you can view it online here. There are many websites and phone apps that allow you to take "practice" theory tests as well. You can find out how to apply for your practical and theory tests here
DrivingExpert - 6-Jun-16 @ 12:57 PM
hi my name is pradipkumar banio. i want to be come pravet taxi driver but i dont know how to ready for theaory test . i dont know.i live in leicester . can you help me for thearoypleaase tell me how to pass my test .yhank you for help me.
pradip - 4-Jun-16 @ 11:03 AM
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