Private hire driver licences are issued for 1 year on first application. After you've been a private hire driver for 1 year, you have the option to apply to renew your licence for either 1 year or 3 years.
To be a private hire driver you must either hold a private operator's licence or, work or a licensed private hire operator.
How to apply
Before applying for a private hire driver licence you'll need to make sure that you can meet the conditions of our hackney carriage and private hire licensing policy.
You'll then need to telephone us to make an appointment to come into the office for an interview with a licensing officer.
What you'll need to bring with you
You'll need to bring these documents with you to the interview:
- A completed and signed private hire driver application form
- Documents that demonstrate your right to work in the UK. The Immigration Act 2016 now means that we have to check that all applicants for a private hire driver's licence have the right to work in the UK. The list of documents that are acceptable can be found at the back of the application form.
- Your original photocard driving licence.
- A DVLA check code which will let us view your driving licence history online. The check code is very case sensitive so we'll need you to tell us which characters are upper case and which are lower case. The check code only lasts 21 days before it expires.
- A recent passport sized photograph that is a true likeness of yourself.
- A criminal records check reference number. We have to carry out an enhanced criminal record check known as a DBS check for each of our private hire drivers. We use a company called uCheck to provide these checks. When you complete the DBS application online you'll be given a reference number which you'll need to tell us.
- There is a fee of £67 payable if you want to go ahead with the DBS check. This must be paid in advance before we can countersign your application.
- You'll need to bring in 2 forms of identification so that we can countersign your DBS check. Documents which are acceptable for this include either your passport or original full birth certificate and a bank statement or utility bill which is less than 3 months old
You'll need to allow around 40 minutes for the interview. This will include watching a 20 minute video called This Time Every Time which is based on the Disability Discrimination Act.
What you'll need to do next
At your interview, the licensing officer will talk to you about the next stage of the application process. This includes:
- A medical report. Your GP will need to complete a medical report form to assess your health and certify you as fit to drive a taxi. You'll be given this form at your interview. Your GP will charge you for this.
- A taxi assessment. You'll need to pass a driving assessment and test. This assessment is provided by Red One Ltd who are based at Westpoint in Clyst St Mary and you can book this by telephoning 01392 444773. The fee for this test is £118.80
- A knowledge test. You'll need to pass our knowledge test and the licensing officer will tell you at your interview how you can book this.
- If you've ever lived outside of the UK for more than 3 months at a time, you'll need to provide us with a criminal convictions certificate or character certificate from each country you've lived in.
Any fees you have to pay to complete these requirements are non refundable and are paid at your own risk. We can't consider your application until all of the requirements have been completed.
You'll need to pay a fee to us for your private hire driver's licence. Please make sure you are aware of how much this will cost.
Start the journey
More info about the journey
Before we can consider your application, we'll need to have:
- your signed and completed application form
- The application fee. This can be paid by cheque, cash or card.
- Your original photocard driving licence
- A passport photo
- A document demonstrating your right to work in the UK
- Two further forms of identification
- A DVLA check code
- A criminal records check reference number
- A medical report
- A taxi assessment pass certificate
- A knowledge test pass certificate
- A criminal convictions certificate or character certificate from any country you've lived in outside of the UK
We can't consider your application until we have all of the documentation we need. The licensing officer looking after your case will let you know if there is information we are waiting for.
Once we have all of the information we need, your driver's licence will either be granted by a licensing officer or it may need to be considered by the licensing sub committee. If your application needs to be considered by the licensing sub committee we will let you know and you'll be sent notice of hearing documentation so that you can attend the hearing.
If you would like to come into the office and speak to us about your application then please telephone us to make an appointment.